Arts & CultureCultural Affairs

Point/Counterpoint: Miley Cyrus



Whenever the name Miley Cyrus is heard, one automatically thinks: “Great, what has this pyscho pothead done this time?” But despite the public’s dislike for her unconventional antics and her glittery nipple stickers, the 22 year-old is more of a philanthropist than the world is giving her credit for.

Miley is involved in more than 40 charities, such as Elton John AIDS Foundation, Habitat for Humanity and multiple children’s hospitals. She‘s a known animal lover, even adopting a pig from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. Using her uncanny actions, such as sporting a rainbow unitard, Cyrus avidly supports the LGBT community as, even identifying as gender-fluid herself. In support of the Happy Hippie Foundation, a foundation helping LGBT youth, Miley did a photo shoot with gender-fluid teens for V Magazine to spread acceptance. Her advocacy for the “Love is Love” campaign even incorporated drag queens in many of her performances.

During the 2014 MTV VMA’s after winning Video of the Year for her song “Wrecking Ball,” the star sent a young homeless man that she met through My Friend’s Place, an organization helping homeless youth find shelter. His speech brought tears to the Cyrus’ eyes and encouraged the public to go to Miley’s Facebook page to learn more and how to help.

If you Google her, Miley’s uncomfortable Internet hysteria will flood your computer screen. A photo of her grinding up against a foam finger or perhaps Robin Thicke will appear. But the world fails to take notice of the humanitarian side of the artist. Sure, she smokes a shit ton of weed, but she never asked to be anyone’s role model. She is being herself and if anyone objects to her flashing her private parts around, Miley honestly doesn’t give a damn. — Raylene Lung


Even though MTV is careening towards irrelevance, this year’s VMA’s received plenty of attention: somewhat due to this year’s host, Miley Cyrus. After Nicki Minaj fielded complaints on Twitter about the racist implications of the VMA nominations, Cyrus was asked about her thoughts on the matter, telling the New York Times that, “I don’t respect [Minaj’s] statement because of the anger that came with it.” She refuses to acknowledge what Minaj is saying because of how she is saying it, an act called tone policing.

Her disregarding the inequality that Minaj is addressing is unsurprising. Cyrus’ racist behavior is a pattern, not an incident. It includes accessorizing people of colour, using them as props in her performances, and the appropriating of black culture, such as twerking, or the dreadlocks she wore to the awards this year.

Cyrus receives positive attention and revenue by using the culture that the black community has created and is criticized for. This isn’t acceptable, because Cyrus spent twenty odd years marinating in white privilege before deciding that she wanted to take “The Best of Both Worlds” to a whole new level.

The polarizing personality that Cyrus presents is fulfilling it’s purpose: she’s incredibly relevant. While Cyrus has put effort into using her celebrity to draw attention to a few specific and important issues, such as homeless youth, the blunt ignorance she shows towards the racial implications of her actions cheapens it.

Lastly, I don’t think of myself as a music critic, or even a particularly picky person when it comes to music, but I would sooner punch myself directly in the face than listen to “Dooo it!” ever again. — Brittney Hubley

Miley: yay or nay?

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One Comment

  1. i am blown away that i did not see the word “problematic” at all. but i did see a complaint of “appropriating” black culture while talking about “throwing shade” so that’s pretty cool.

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