This morning I read an on-line news headline: Miley Cyrus Posts Photo of Herself As Topless Pirate. I thought to myself, "If I die right now at this moment, the last thing I will have ever read was 'Miley Cyrus Posts Photo of Herself As Topless Pirate'."
Miley has 21.1 million followers on Twitter. Here is her most recent tweet...
Fuck yeah VMAs!!!!! #VMAs on @MTV Aug 30 at 9pm- July 20
And after watching last year's telecast, I would add "Fuck you, VMAs!"
Miley is hosting the MTV Video Music Awards show in August. I'm not sure if that warrants five exclamation points, however. Miley is a terrible role model for young, impressionable punctuation.
Miley is only following 362 Twitter accounts, most of those accounts being famous people. Celebrities like to follow each other on Twitter. I suspect that when famous media personalities get together, the conversation rarely centers on their fans. I have no doubt that famous people love their fans... they just don't care what their fans have to say. The same holds true if you replace famous people and fans with "Leonardo DiCaprio" and "whatever model he is currently dating."
Mike Tyson spent time in prison for rape. A number of beloved male celebrities have been arrested for domestic violence. And there's an endless list of well-liked celebrities who have been arrested for driving while intoxicated: Reese Witherspoon, Keifer Sutherland, Tim Allen, the dog from Frasier, John Quincy Adams, etc. Yet there is so much hate directed towards Miley Cyrus because she rubbed her crotch with a giant foam finger on stage one time. Heck, if molesting oneself on stage with a giant foam finger was so horrible, we'd have to impeach half of Congress.
I like Miley Cyrus. You never hear her say or do mean-spirited things. In interviews and performance, she stays positive and fun and friendly. And yet check out the reader comments underneath any Internet article about Miley Cyrus; there's so much anger and venom and slut-shaming and mocking of her talent and her career.
Miley Cyrus found initial fame as a Disney Channel child star. Hence, some people feel that she is obligated to remain publicly non-sexual, so as not to "offend" her fans. This is an unfair double standard between men and women. I mean, nobody expected Justin Bieber to stay young forever; we just wanted him to go away forever.
Like it or not, Miley Cyrus is an adult. She expresses herself sexually as part of the artistic path she chooses to be on right now. Heck, at what point did viewers start tuning into the Mtv Music Awards hoping for less nudity? It's like watching The Real Housewives of New Jersey for the non-trashiness.
The real reason society is angered by Miley's open sexuality is because she's not a guy and she doesn't have a voluptuous porn star body and she looks like a typical girl you might know. She's relatable. And regular, relatable women are not supposed to flaunt it; this contradicts the status quo of traditional gender roles. Nobody is bothered when Adam Levine shows skin... except for the people who are bothered by Adam Levine in general... which, okay, I guess is everyone.
When it comes to all of the sexually inappropriate things your kids see in a typical day, a topless Miley Cyrus isn't even in the top twenty. But, I mean, if you're really adamant about not letting your children view sexual imagery, then simply don't let them or their friends or their friends' friends watch it.
Some people hate Miley Cyrus because they hate her music. But I doubt that most of the people who hate Miley Cyrus' music have heard much of her music. They just assume they hate her music. I'm certainly no connoisseur of the Miley Cyrus musical catalogue. So I have no opinion on this matter. Wrecking Ball is pretty good, though.
My guess is that I probably wouldn't be a big fan of Miley's music. My tastes tend to run closer to Kurt Cobain, Lou Reed, Johnny Cash, and other dead white men. But I'm one-hundred years old and the last concert I went to was an evening of acoustic jams by Whitesnake's bass player. But Miley Cyrus' music was not meant for me. And I'm okay with that.
People over the age of thirty can get a little snobbish when it comes to music. And people over the age of thirty can be just as self-absorbed as millennials. Everything is not about you. I get it- you don't listen to Miley Cyrus. On the other hand, the average 15-year-old girl has no idea who Led Zeppelin is, other than that three of the original band members are Harry Styles' dad. But teenagers aren't angry that you are listening to Kashmir. High school students don't take your love of Cheap Trick personally. So why do you care what they like? Get over yourself.
Miley Cyrus participated in the 2015 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductions, which I watched on HBO. (Right Said Fred was snubbed, yet again) Miley displays an appreciation, interest, and respect for the rock music that came before her. It's an admirable quality for a young performer to possess. I don't think a lot of current musicians pay attention to the history of their craft. One doesn't get the sense that Iggy Azaela listens to a lot of Muddy Waters.
Miley Cyrus has a cool, weirdly deep voice. Her vocal texture falls somewhere between Billy Ray Cyrus and an adult man. I really like the way she sounds, as a matter of fact. And if her career extends beyond her twenties- which, contrary to what the haters are hoping for, I predict it will- it will be due in large part to her unique sound. Having an unconventional voice certainly hasn't hampered the careers of Cher, Stevie Nicks, Queen Elizabeth, Jason Voorhees, etc.
Sometimes Miley tries too hard to "shock". When George Carlin used profanity, the words glided off his tongue. When Miley drops the F-bomb, it feels a little forced. I don't think Miley is a natural swearer; she's just doing it for show. There's another word for fake edginess- "desperation." But Miley isn't desperate and she's young and she'll grow out of it soon... as hopefully Bono will.
Miley Cyrus, you're a positive role model for young women, you refuse to compromise your integrity to appease the cynics, and you make the world a better place. And I'm going to start following you on Twitter. I mean, not literally, or even figuratively, but, well, in spirit.