It's sad that, because Miley, Selena Gomez and Hilary Duff were queens of the Disney Channel, they're held to a higher standard than they could ever live up to. They can't make any mistake or choice without being criticized. I recall a friend telling me that Miley got picked on for using a pole to balance herself during a live performance of "Party in the USA." People saw a pole and automatically called foul... or in her case "Stripper!" I can't imagine what it must be like to grow up on TV then have it come to an end and suddenly be a young adult under a very judgmental microscope. While I don't think for a minute that kids who grow up on TV are very much like "normal" kids, they still go through the same brain development as everyone else. They all have crap at home, perhaps even worse than ours since they were the breadwinners of the family. They all feel pressure from their parents to act a certain way, even more so than normal kids. I can appreciate that Miley has had to find out who she is, and that when you grow up in a Christian conservative family then attain freedom to think and experiment for yourself you can get caught up in bad choices. But it's sad to me that what kids like Miley think is that if they do the things they were told not to, they become someone they're not or become someone no one can respect.
So when Miley decided to represent herself as nothing more than a girl in a rap video I didn't feel annoyed or violated, I felt sad. Sad, that due to recent comments she's made on Twitter about her dad it wouldn't surprise me in the least if last night's performance was to stick it to him. My guess is that, whatever she found out about daddy dearest, it contributed to her current downward spiral unrelated to other choices she's made to get herself away from Disney and her parents now that she's "growing up." But how sad is it that "growing up" (to those in that age period) means experimenting with drugs, and treating your body like it won't suffer consequences from the choices they make. Miley may just be acting like she's been for awhile for no reason at all but as one who has experience growing up in a conservative family like Miley did, makes me know better. It's liberating to discover what you believe about life and yourself away from family and as long as you don't kill yourself or get a disease I'd say it's an inevitable and healthy part of life. But when you take it to the level that Miley did that night (and over the last couple of years) something deeper is going on. I feel sorry for Miley, she's the one that's going to have to live with that performance. She will have to explain to her kids and grandkids why she was acting like a girl in one of those rap videos. People say how gross she was but Miley isn't the only one. And she's getting a lot of flack because she's a public figure. If I'm right and this has something to do with daddy, it's no wonder she didn't pass along any respect to Robin Thicke as a father because she may not be so crazy about her own right now. The problem with giving yourself a license to do whatever you want when you're let down by someone, is that other people have to deal with your choices too... like Robin Thicke's family. If Miley doesn't wise up she will end up hurting more than her image.
Miley's performance brings up another big issue aside from daddy issues: how women portray themselves and how men view women. It makes me sad that a woman disrespecting herself by sending the message that she's exactly what boys today are reducing women to... is happening at all. I've had a number of conversations with friends, classmates, teachers and others about how women are portrayed in rap videos: different body shapes and skantily clad while the rap artist calls them bitches, gropes them and makes it clear that life is all about sex money and in some songs, drugs. People talk about how terrible it is that women are portrayed as sex objects but then think there's nothing wrong with guys looking at porn or going to strip clubs. It's chalked up to boys being boys (but what woman wants a boy?) and women are just going to have to accept and get used to it.
Whatever Miley's motivation was, the thing I know for sure: women are better than what Miley was doing up on that stage. It's performances like Miley's that tell men women aren't anything but sex objects, so while Miley may have stuck it to her dad or felt freedom in exerting her independence, she damaged much more than herself.