Opinion

August 28, 2013

Misty Watson: Oh, wait, MTV is where morality dies

I completely understand why you’re all shocked and talking nonstop about Miley Cyrus’ performance at MTV’s Video Music Awards on Sunday night. It’s not like MTV has ever strayed from its wholesome programming lineup before.

Oh, wait.

We’re talking about the network that quit playing music videos decades ago in lieu of quality shows such as “The Real World,” “Jersey Shore” and “16 and Pregnant.” The network has spawned fantastic role models for our teens and tweens, such as Snooki and Farrah Abraham.

OK. Well, that’s not the reason we’re shocked and appalled while apparently intrigued by the racy performance, which featured teddy bears, a foam finger and lots of hip action.

It must be because the VMAs have never stooped to that level before. The VMAs have always been a classy affair featuring lovely, talented artists, something you’d love to watch with your grandmother at your side.

Oh, wait.

But just 10 years ago we were all sitting around talking about a kiss between Madonna and Britney Spears. Wasn’t Christina Aguilera in on that as well? (And yes, that was 10 years ago! How many of us are feeling a little old right now?)

There was Lil’ Kim’s wardrobe featuring a carefully placed seashell and Lady Gaga’s dress made of raw meat. Not to mention thousands of backup dancers and lead performers on that stage who have danced in similar ways to Miley (though most of them have more coordination than that of a drunken, trashy stripper).

OK. Well, then the quality of the VMAs from previous years can’t possibly be what is fueling all this surprise.

It must be because we expect that kind of behavior from other stars, but Miley is a product of Disney. Disney is incapable of producing celebrities who ooze that level of smut.

Oh, wait.

We’re talking about the company that has launched careers for Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan. At this point, I’m just waiting to see who crashes and burns first, Miley or Lindsay.

So Miley isn’t the first seemingly sweet, innocent Disney star to go a little off the deep end. Do I need to remind you of Britney’s shaved-head period? And it isn’t like we haven’t had hints the real Miley is nothing like her TV persona we saw on “Hannah Montana.”  

Honestly, I’ve only watched the VMAs a couple of times, and Sunday night wasn’t one of those. But you’d have to live in a cave without Internet access to escape the photos, the tweets, the clips and the social media frenzy taking place right now because of the performance. Actually, that sounds nice. Anyone know where I can find a cave without Internet?

I pulled up the performance online the other night and my husband and I watched as Miley twisted her mouth and stuck out her Gene Simmons-esque tongue, rubbed inappropriately against Robin Thicke and danced with her backside hanging out of shorts that are not even appropriate for a Hooters waitress to wear. It was not a pleasant few minutes.

I turned to Chris, “I don’t get it. Yes, it’s horrid. But how is what she’s doing any worse than any other backup dancer or any other performer out there? Why is everyone carrying on?”

I can’t help but wonder if Billy Ray is sitting in a dark corner quietly singing “Don’t tell my heart, my achy breaky heart” as many other fathers of 20-year-olds before him have probably done.

This performance is just another reminder that MTV is where morality dies. Miley has joined the list of people who should be shipped off to a deserted island surrounded by sharks without any way to contact the outside world. Others on the island include the Kardashians, Lindsay and most reality stars.

Of course, it makes me wonder: Can we really blame them for being this way? Aren’t they just giving us what we as a society are asking for?

Murray County native Misty Watson is a staff writer and photographer for The Daily Citizen. You can tell her which Disney star you think is going to fall next at mistywatson@daltoncitizen.com, facebook.com/MistyWatsonDCN or on Twitter, @mistydwatson.

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