On Miley Cyrus and her triumph at the 2013 VMAs

I too was offended by Miley Cyrus’ performance at the VMAs. I am always dismayed when a performer appears so unprepared, so unpolished, so unprofessional. I personally know dozens of artists who could have put on a better show and I think it’s an insult to waste the stage in such a way.

I’m not however offended by her awkward attempt at adult behaviour or her blatant appropriation of African American culture. That’s been happening since before I was born. It’s almost as predictable as the child star gone bad scenario that Cyrus is currently acting out. Go to your local mall and you will see young women trying to appear grown up by being sexual and white kids trying to be cool by ‘acting black’. (Mind you they may not be twerking in the food court, but you get my drift.)

Nor am I offended by Miley Cyrus’ show of sexuality. I am, in fact, inspired by it.

It would be an exaggeration to state that Ms Cyrus owns her sexuality. By all appearances she is merely renting it, but at that age who of us weren’t. But believe me when I tell you this: she owned the stage, she owned the show, and by the end of the night, thanks to the biggest internet meltdown since Janet Jackson’s wardrobe malfunction, she owned the fucking planet.

Consider this for a moment. Miley Cyrus appeared at the 2013 VMAs with the most popular artist of the moment, Robin Thicke, in a duet of one of the most popular songs of the last few years, ‘Blurred Lines’. For Thicke this should have been a hero pose, a money shot, a climax to a stunning success, achieved, like Miley in her performance, largely through appropriating women’s sexuality and borrowing from black culture (watch the video, listen to Marvin Gaye).

Instead what happened was that Thicke was utterly upstaged by a considerably less talented upstart, blown off his feet by the sheer audacity of this little brat. You see, Robin Thicke is the current epitome of cool and the current embodiment of male sexual power. He expressed this more graphically than any other mainstream artist yet by initially appearing sharply dressed in a video with a group of mute models who weren’t dressed as at all, in the ultimate expression of male domination and ownership and female vulnerability and acquiescence.

Onstage Miley Cyrus completely turned the tables on Robin Thicke. It was as if one of those dolls in the video had come to life, like the beauty had brains, like the slut could speak.

For months now the airwaves have been assaulted by the strains of this song ‘Blurred Lines’ which is essentially the soundtrack to rape. How many women’s lives have been ruined by the words, You know you want it, and how much more did they have to suffer to see this apology for sexual assault become an incessant hook, a much-repeated riff and the catchphrase of the moment? When Miley bent over and presented herself for the piledrive, taunting the sexual aggressor and teasing him for his own creepy, pervy pantomime, she was effectively saying, Yeah, I want it. Whatcha got, bitch?.

In the end, he had nothing. Robin Thicke was entirely dickless. Why? Because the bitch called his bluff. Because by flaunting that finger and dangling it between her legs like a foam phallus, she showed that she had a bigger dick than him and that he was ultimately redundant. With a flick of that finger, she dared to even touch his insignificant member, and in doing so she emasculated him, castrated him as effectively as if she had razor in her grip. In the most blatant dick wrestling match committed to live TV, Miley Cyrus won.

And how did she do it? She made him the object. She made him stand there and take it. She made him the bitch. She not only neutered him, she neutralised him. He no longer existed. He was a blank space dancing in a vacuum, dazed and listless, like the women he had used as props in his videos. Suddenly he was the sexual accessory. Miley made the man the prop. She did the worst thing you can do to a man or a performer. She rendered him irrelevant.

And of course she was almost universally shamed for it. Just like Janet Jackson all those years ago when the world went berserk over the sight of a black woman’s boobie. That happened when Justin Timberlake ripped off her bodice at the Super Bowl, effectively simulating sexual assault, to ‘Rock Your Body’, the song in which he had been for months telling little girls like Miley Cyrus that he would have them naked by the end of the song. But of course, like Robin Thicke, you can get away with being sexually suspect, you can get away with double standards placed on sexuality of men and women, as in the words of Timberlake’s more recent hit, as long as you wear a suit and tie.

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