Open Letter to Miley Cyrus: You offended me as a mother and black woman.

Open Letter to Miley Cyrus: You offended me as a mother and black woman.

Dear Miley:

I write this with anger and a heavy heart. Don’t know whether to take out my paddle and give you a good spanking, or shake my head in pity. Your performance at the VMA was not off the chain but grossly out of order.

You offended me as a mother because of your vulgar and borderline pornographic performance. The tongue licking, stick-booty shaking was wildly inappropriate. And it’s not because you’re a former Disney sweetheart. You offended me as a mother because it was really bad and so embarrassing. I understand you want to shed your old image, but you’ve gone overboard, baby.  You offended me as a mother because you performed like an underwear clad suburban teen gyrating in front of the bedroom mirror – but in public. I was waiting to see your famous daddy stomp on stage and drag you off.  But Robin Thicke, sauntered in instead. And you continued to blur the lines of decency by acting “rapey” against his private parts. I shuddered to think of your young fans tuning in only to get a crash course in lap dancing. But of course you’re a 20 year old who is desperate trying to shed that gosh darn image. I wanted to put you on a twenty year time-out.

But my offense touched another part of me, that of a black woman.

You offended me as a black woman because your performance reminded me of rappers who call us bitches and hoes.  There's no respect. We are objects and sex toys. Some young black women have fallen prey to sexually negative imagery in music videos by allowing themselves to be objectified. You, Miley embrace and celebrate that ignorance.

You offended me as a black woman, because you twisted what you perceived as black culture into whitewashed raunchiness. Your backup sista girlfriends acted as your black hip hop accessories. To add insult to injury, you actually peered into the humongous butt of one of your more  endowed  female cohorts - face unknown because the camera was focused on her huge butt. Then you gave it a slap. Was that paying homage to the black female backside? 

She strutted the stage like a modern day Hotentot Venus. You wouldn’t know about her, would you, Miley? She was Sarah Baartman, a slave who in the late 1700's was put on display like an animal for her unusually large buttucks. Raise_Miley_Hotentot_Venus

I hate to see my fellow sistas of any color willingly put themselves out there like that, and I hate to see you celebrate  it. It is a stain that we must rise above, it is a stain that you revere and mimic.

I know you think the New Miley is a savvy marketing strategy. Crossing over to the “black side” helped Christina Aguilera, Justin Timberlake and Robin Thicke. They are successful culture vultures who use the black genre for personal gain.  For these white artists “black” is the new cool. Look at the awards Timberlake racked up at the VMAs. To the industry, he’s more “black” than the black performers…but not really (wink). And this year’s VMA racked up in the ratings too. That too offends me.

 I don’t think this ratched hip hop branding strategy is working for you, Miley. As a mother and a black woman, you may want to twerk or better yet, tweak your direction before it ruins you.

With the utmost sincerity,


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    I pursued a satisfying career in the advertising industry, served as a volunteer mentor and parent educator at my two (now grown up) sons' schools and have actually stayed happily married for over a quarter of a century. However, my most gratifying achievement was raising my sons well. I'm not saying there wasn't a little bit of hell raising going on, but you live and learn. Now I'm passing the knowledge on to you. My goal is to turn these nuggets of wisdom into reference books for parents.

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    Check out my other blogs: "Trending Over 40", An informational blog for those over 40 who find themselves social-media challenged, "Black Copy" Reflections of a veteran ad chick, You can find samples of my ad work on this site. Simply click on TV and Print tabs. Also check out my company, Hughes Who Productions We develop games and animation for casinos, marketers and educational institutions. Thank you for your interest. Blessings... Edye
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