Special to WorldTribune.com
Former star of Hannah Montana and Disney sweetheart Miley Cyrus has now joined the long list of “good girls gone bad,” as the colloquialism goes.
Her latest music video, “We Can’t Stop” is soaring to the top of the charts, despite the fact that it is grotesque, promotes promiscuity and celebrates drug use. She is among the wealthiest and most successful teen stars of all-time, yet is now sadly descending into a drug-induced haze of bizarre, self-destructive acts.
The video shows a once-beautiful young woman gyrating in front of the camera like a two-dollar amateur pornographer. There is no sex appeal in her movements, no flirty tantalization as other pop stars regularly indulge in: her movements are plainly gross.
In one scene, she is in a pool licking a doll. In another, a girl is doing a mock skit of cutting her fingers, but the fingers that are truncated turn out to be plastic. A young man smears a piece of bread on his face. This is the kind of so-called “fun” the video promotes: disgusting idiocy.
And the lyrics are the typical anthem of uneducated degenerates. There are lines that promote indiscriminate sex, with either male or female partners, even strangers: “somebody here might get some.” In another instance the same degenerates are “in line in the bathroom trying to get a line in the bathroom.” At least that gives us clarity on why they are behaving so foolishly.
At one point, Ms. Cyrus tells us her girlfriends are shaking their behinds “like we at a strip club” and attempts to sully the name of God in the same verse: “Remember only God can judge ya, forget the haters ‘cause somebody loves ya.” This leads us to wonder what Bible she read during her upbringing as a Christian Baptist.
She insists that she has ultimate supremacy over her house and body: “It’s our party we can do what we want.” This might sound good in theory but in practice it means she has added ugly tattoos on her body, sticks her tongue out repeatedly like she is rocker Ozzy Osbourne and then dons a black hat so she looks like a male rapper. At the same time, she is grabbing the body parts of other girls. But what is she grabbing? Are they voluptuous goddesses? No, she fondles equally unkempt, drug-infested teens. Take a shower, ladies and get out of the sweat pants. Try Dove Moisturizing Body Wash, as it smells good too.
And ingesting a piece of chocolate once in a while to add some meat on those bones is also a step in the right direction.
In short, there is no beauty here. There is nothing sexy here, either.
We might be tempted to pity the poor little rich girl who is now taking a wrong turn.
After all, her fiancée, Liam Hemsworth, allegedly cheated on her; they then delayed the wedding, so she is clearly hurting right now. Has he been hitching his star to hers and is disrespecting her now that he is a famous actor in his own right? Her father, country music singer Billy Ray Cyrus, thinks so. In addition, Ms. Cyrus’ parents are ending their 20-year marriage, and this is also a strain on the girl. Finally, she is very young—in her early twenties, so perhaps we can cut her some slack.
Yet, the problem is that her personal turmoil is spilling into her work now as a form of advocacy for bad behavior. In addition, she and her Dad have both been very influential on our youth and popular culture.
While Ms. Cyrus played Hannah Montana from 2006-2011, her father starred as her goofy and dim-witted father-manager in the series, Robby Stewart. In that role, he was usually the butt of jokes. Of even greater concern is the fact that many of the show themes undermined the natural family order.
The father figure was usually led by his daughter to see the more progressive point the parent had missed. In peddling this recurring theme of Hollywood movies and television comedies, the Cyrus clan both visually and verbally undermined parental authority — the notion that the parent is wiser than the child and his good counsel ought to be followed.
The Cyruses therefore shot a dagger right into the homes of every preteen who was infatuated with Hannah Montana. The message they were sending: don’t listen to your parents because you know better than they do.
Among the most striking themes of contemporary television and films is the concept that children have a unique progressive vision, a bold insight into the truth that their parents do not possess. It is the children who have moral authority and the parents who are hopelessly misguided until they see that their children are right.
This theme is even targeted at pre-school and elementary school children. In the recent Dream Works Animation film, The Croods, a fictional prehistoric family is presented as deeply flawed because it follows the advice of the father who is keeping them safe. Only when a teenage genius emerges who demonstrates the value of ingenuity is family harmony ultimately restored. In a nutshell, the father is a buffoon and the children are brilliant. Father doesn’t know best; the teenagers do. In fact, the father is a laughingstock.
Yet, Mr. Cyrus is not laughing now. For several years he has been terrified that his daughter will be irretrievable. In March 2011, he gave a candid interview to GQ titled “Mr. Hannah Montana’s Broken Heart” in which he admitted to having made grave errors as a parent. He fears Ms. Cyrus might be going down the same road as Kurt Cobain, Michael Jackson and Anna Nicole Smith.
He regretted having taken his family from the joyous shelter of the Tennessee countryside to Los Angeles to shoot Hannah Montana. “It destroyed my family,” he said. “I’ll tell you right now—the damn show destroyed my family.”
“I’d take it back in a second,” he said, referring to the decision to enlist his then-teenage girl in the show. “For my family to be here and just be everybody okay, safe and sound and happy and normal, would have been fantastic. Heck, yeah. I’d erase it all in a second if I could.” …
Mr. Cyrus also confessed, from an unabashed Christian viewpoint, that the family had been baptized prior to going to LA and feared the evil lurking within the entertainment industry. Yet, both daughter and father strayed from their Christian principles.
“Somewhere along this journey, both mine and Miley’s faith has been shaken,” he said. “That saddens me the most.” He declared there is “no doubt” that his family is being ruined by Satan.
Truer words are rarely spoken. When the Hollywood elite tells children to disregard their parents, it is a way of ensuring they are also separated from Christ. Parents have the primary duty of leading their children and keeping them in the faith. When the authority of parents is constantly undermined, then the link between the child and Christianity is also severed.
Mr. Cyrus was indeed dim-witted in undermining parental authority on his show for so many years. He said in the GQ interview “life is a circle,” referring to a table he was viewing where he recalled happier days during his daughter’s musical apprenticeship.
Indeed, it is a circle, but not as he expected: the message he and his daughter sent into American homes boomeranged against them both and devoured a once happy family.
Now, Mr. Cyrus cries out in agony for his lost daughter while she just can’t stop.
Grace Vuoto is the Editor of Politics and Culture at World Tribune. The founder of the Edmund Burke Institute for American Renewal, she is the host of American Heartland with Dr. Grace on WTSB Radio Saturdays at 3:00. See show and archives at: the Grace Vuoto channel at WorldTribuneTV.