we interrupt this regularly scheduled birthday tribute to write an open letter to miley cyrus,
dear miley cyrus, my name is tony,
because i approve of your behavior, sinead o’conner would probably call me “a spunk-spewing dirtbag on the net.” and who’s to say she’s far off the mark.
indeed, i cant say she is wrong in begging you to put some clothes on and stop prostituting yourself to men who buy diamonds for their mistresses off the riches they earn off you, as she claims. i have a y chromosome, what do i know.
but if theres one thing i have learned in my dirtbag life of cruising the “net”, it’s that every year there is a new young lady more than willing to show off her form while singing a little song.
this year you have two little songs that made it big while you slithered around on floor and licked hardware.
your first hit of 2013 was “We Can’t Stop” which came out in the middle of June. 100 days later and the video of you twerking with your friends has been viewed 220,075,031 times.
three weeks ago you released “Wrecking Ball” and it already has 182,658,541 views in part because you were nekkid in it and it was directed by that spunk spewing dirtbag photographer Terry Richardson, who took the picture of you above.
because hes disgusting.
and because you dont know any better (they say).
it also didnt hurt that soon after Wrecking Ball was released you went on the MTV Video Music Awards and bent over for like 5 seconds in front of the fully clothed Robin Thicke which blew more minds than Elvis shaking his hips.
the one bit of warning i heard from your auntie o’conner that i agree with is: make sure you’re getting paid.
the entertainment business, just like most businesses, is a man’s world. there are only three major record companies, and they’re all run by men. but you have something unique that transcends the britneys and xtinas and even mariahs before you:
your daddy somehow parlayed a one-hit wonder song into a family business. he’s no dummy.
even though youre just 20 years old, youve grown up in front of our eyes and your songs are getting better than ever.
unlike what sinead is saying, i think part of your appeal is youre *not* sexy in the way the divas above are. you dont sing like Mimi and Brit… or Beyonce.
you are your own creature. and your crime is you are having fun figuring it all out.
like Ke$ha’s doing.
you’re pissing off all the right people, like Madonna did.
and despite what Sinead says, there are female singers who have been able to be successful And sexy at the same time and one of thems birthday is today and no one ever calls her a prostitute
I wasn’t going to write this letter, but today i’ve been dodging phone calls from various newspapers who wished me to remark upon your having said in Rolling Stone your Wrecking Ball video was designed to be similar to the one for Nothing Compares… So this is what I need to say… And it is said in the spirit of motherliness and with love.
I am extremely concerned for you that those around you have led you to believe, or encouraged you in your own belief, that it is in any way ‘cool’ to be naked and licking sledgehammers in your videos. It is in fact the case that you will obscure your talent by allowing yourself to be pimped, whether its the music business or yourself doing the pimping.
Nothing but harm will come in the long run, from allowing yourself to be exploited, and it is absolutely NOT in ANY way an empowerment of yourself or any other young women, for you to send across the message that you are to be valued (even by you) more for your sexual appeal than your obvious talent.
I am happy to hear I am somewhat of a role model for you and I hope that because of that you will pay close attention to what I am telling you.
The music business doesn’t give a shit about you, or any of us. They will prostitute you for all you are worth, and cleverly make you think its what YOU wanted.. and when you end up in rehab as a result of being prostituted, ‘they’ will be sunning themselves on their yachts in Antigua, which they bought by selling your body and you will find yourself very alone.
None of the men oggling you give a shit about you either, do not be fooled. Many’s the woman mistook lust for love. If they want you sexually that doesn’t mean they give a fuck about you. All the more true when you unwittingly give the impression you don’t give much of a fuck about yourself. And when you employ people who give the impression they don’t give much of a fuck about you either. No one who cares about you could support your being pimped.. and that includes you yourself.
Yes, I’m suggesting you don’t care for yourself. That has to change. You ought be protected as a precious young lady by anyone in your employ and anyone around you, including you. This is a dangerous world. We don’t encourage our daughters to walk around naked in it because it makes them pray [sic] for animals and less than animals (a distressing majority of whom work in the music industry and the associated media).
You are worth more than your body or your sexual appeal. The world of showbiz doesn’t see things that way, they like things to be seen the other way, whether they are magazines who want you on their cover, or whatever.. Don’t be under any illusions.. ALL of them want you because they’re making money off your youth and your beauty.. which they could not do except for the fact your youth makes you blind to the evils of show business. If you have an innocent heart you can’t recognise those who do not.
I repeat, you have enough talent that you don’t need to let the music business make a prostitute of you. You shouldn’t let them make a fool of you either. Don’t think for a moment that any of them give a flying fuck about you. They’re there for the money.. we’re there for the music. It has always been that way and it will always be that way. The sooner a young lady gets to know that, the sooner she can be REALLY in control.
You also said in Rolling Stone that your look is based on mine. The look I chose, I chose on purpose at a time when my record company were encouraging me to do what you have done. I felt I would rather be judged on my talent and not my looks. I am happy that I made that choice, not least because I do not find myself on the proverbial rag heap now that I am almost 47 yrs of age.. which unfortunately many female artists who have based their image around their sexuality, end up on when they reach middle age.
Real empowerment of yourself as a woman would be to in future refuse to exploit your body or your sexuality in order for men to make money from you. I needn’t even ask the question.. I’ve been in the business long enough to know that men are making more money than you are from you getting naked. Its really not at all cool. And its sending dangerous signals to other young women. Please in future say no when you are asked to prostitute yourself. Your body is for you and your boyfriend. It isn’t for every spunk-spewing dirtbag on the net, or every greedy record company executive to buy his mistresses diamonds with.
As for the shedding of the Hannah Montana image.. whoever is telling you getting naked is the way to do that does absolutely NOT respect your talent, or you as a young lady. Your records are good enough for you not to need any shedding of Hannah Montana. She’s waaaaaaay gone by now.. Not because you got naked but because you make great records.
Whether we like it or not, us females in the industry are role models and as such we have to be extremely careful what messages we send to other women. The message you keep sending is that its somehow cool to be prostituted.. its so not cool Miley.. its dangerous. Women are to be valued for so much more than their sexuality. we aren’t merely objects of desire. I would be encouraging you to send healthier messages to your peers.. that they and you are worth more than what is currently going on in your career. Kindly fire any motherfucker who hasn’t expressed alarm, because they don’t care about you.
And then of course, Miley responded in a way only she could. Via Twitter.
and i was trying to explain to her that the mtv video music awards is great because its shocking
i reminded her that madonna really catapulted her career when she dry humped her wedding dress at the vmas
and then later kissed both britney and xtina while wearing a tuxedo
therefore miley is just an extension of that.
one of the most shocking (at the time) moments though had nothing to do with sex, but with politics
when in 1998 mca of the beastie boys, three years before 9/11 criticized then-president Clinton that his retaliation to the US embassy bombings was a bad call.
“Those bombings that took place in the Middle East were thought of as retaliation by the terrorists and if we thought of what we did as retaliation certainly we’re gonna find more retaliation from people in the Middle East. From terrorists specifically I should say, because most Middle Eastern people are not terrorists,” Yauch said.
And then he brought it home by warning against Islamophobia: “That’s another thing that America really needs to think about is our racism, racism that comes from the United States towards the Muslim people and towards Arabic people and that’s something that has to stop and the United States has to start respecting people from the Middle East in order to find a solution to the problems that have been building up over many years, so I thank everyone for your patience, and letting me speak my mind.”
the three bad brothers you know so well always knew how to shock in different ways, true.
but when they were miley’s age they were bragging about doing it like this, doing it like that
and doing it with…
which is why i am totally fine with letting 20-year-olds be 20-year-olds,