Arts Voices: Foam finger generates VMA gossip

When viewers tuned in to the Aug. 25 MTV Video Music Awards, no one was prepared for the scandal that was Miley Cyrus’ performance.Millions of people have been shocked by Cyrus’ provocative behavior in recent months. Her hit song, “We Can’t Stop,” is the first shocker in a series of interesting surprises. This song marks the definite shift from her Hannah Montana days to her more “mature” career. If by “mature” she means inappropriate and absurd, then Cyrus’ career is right on track. “We Can’t Stop” provides a lot of ambiguity as far as subject matter, but confusion about whether she says “dancing with Miley” in the song or rather “Molly,” which would imply drug use, has also caused a good amount of controversy. Cyrus’ money sandwich, stuffed bear-themed music video for the song continues to add to her surprising shift from her Disney days. The revealing outfits, inappropriate dancing—specifically her twerking—and interesting props in the video make Cyrus’ new career seem like a spiral out of control. Cyrus’ 2013 VMA performance added more fuel to the debate. Cyrus took her nearly unwatchable music video to the stage during this performance and brought it to a whole new level. Cyrus twerking on pop artist Robin Thicke and her scandalous outfit have really shaken the way people look at her. That performance is evidence that Cyrus has become inappropriate for individuals of all ages. When watching videos of the VMAs, one can see the disgust on the faces of other music artists. If adults are disturbed by her performance, what about the children who have grown up with her as Hannah Montana? Cyrus is a widely known individual and can be influential on young children and teens. The new generation could grow up thinking that this behavior is acceptable and normal. Cyrus’ behavior is too much for the public eye, and hopefully people who look up to her realize this. Cyrus’ new image also calls forth the question of where the future of pop music is headed. The same question also applies to Cyrus’ twerking partner. Thicke’s video for his popular song “Blurred Lines” depicts nudity and farm animals. Is this ridiculousness the future of pop music? It can be hoped that this only a phase and that these pop artists will realize just how inappropriate their behavior is. For now, Cyrus said she doesn’t think about what she does; she just does it. There is a sneaking suspicion that she knows exactly what she’s doing. For a while, Cyrus was mostly off the radar. She has suddenly returned to the industry with a bang, causing unrivaled controversy with her song and the performances that go along with it. Suddenly everyone is talking about her. This could be an ingenious plan to get her back into the public eye, ready to tackle a new step in her career. If so, it is certainly a great plan to rack up an audience ready to see her next move. Whether Cyrus really is changing the image of pop music and enjoying it or is just aiming for attention, I think everyone can agree that we have had enough of her insulting dancing and her tongue.