Congratulations, America, you are the proud parents of Miley Cyrus and Chief Keef.
(ThyBlackMan.com) After considerable thought, I felt empowered to step forward and address the mist of deception surrounding “Miley-Gate“. Some members of our dear American public and media assert strongly that Miley Cyrus is endowed with the social duty to be a role model; therefore, Cyrus should think not once, but twice about tweaking in front of a national audience. Unfortunately, it seems that this portion of the population forgot one important rule concerning the entertainment industry—Perception is reality. Miley Cyrus is an entertainer. Chief Keef is an entertainer. It is Miss Cyrus job to portray a provocative image, and trust, she thanks you gladly for the reverence, media buzz, and millions of dollars in advertisement royalties and other business transactions. As an entertainer, it’s in her best interest to give the world a shock, be it good or bad.
Following her now infamous MTV VMA’S performance, several members of her fan base have chastised Cyrus for shedding her teen image as Hannah Montana—another entertainment persona that was marketed toward the Disney audience. It’s obvious Miley Cyrus has abandoned the “squeaky clean” Disney persona in favor of the “mature” image; however, we sometimes forget that our favorite child stars are adults. The entertainment industry understands how tightly generations cling to the stars that they grew up idolizing; therefore, Miley Cyrus transformation, one might argue, accurately reflects the transformation within my generation from teen to young adulthood. Although he has only been in the spotlight for roughly a year and a half, Chief Keef arguably also represents the generational shift among young men (and women) toward a more liberal lifestyle, if you will.
Specifics aside, we— a significant population of the late teens and early twenty something’s in America, live our lives like Miley Cyrus and Chief Keef and Cyrus. Anecdotally speaking, I can confidently say that at least eight out of ten of my teens and young adult peers embrace the lifestyle that these two promote. Of course, denial usually kicks in. “Oh, not my son/daughter. They are angels.” Well, I entreat you to explain why I routinely hear the sounds of a six year old singing Nicki Minaj or a Katy Perry top 40 ballad in the halls of the school I presently (Boys and Girls Club of the Midlands in South Carolina) work at.
This observation highlights a readily acknowledged fact—we, the consumers, are easily influenced. I would even dare to say that some of us are currently puppets of the media who vehemently deny that we control our own purchasing decisions while we wear dreadlocks or wear short skirts to the club to twerk for a cash prize given out by the DJ. Aside from that, one can willingly see the trail of smoke from Chief Keef and Miley Cyrus in the experience of my college peers posted in cyberspace on Facebook and Twitter. My simple question is this—why does the media and adult America to a larger extent, downplay the actions in public outrage while simultaneously ignoring and sometimes, encouraging the same actions of their sons and daughters?
We, the people of America, are conditioned to abhor any actions that the media portray as politically incorrect. The media firestorm that surrounded the Zimmerman trial is a perfect example of how the media can generate a narrative against the issue of self-defense that is more one-sided than an Ohio State football opener. Back to my point at hand, the same media launched an attack about the provocative attire and marijuana use that the “new” Cyrus embraced over the kid-friendly “old” Cyrus. The same media scoffs Chief Keef for living a lifestyle that promotes smoking marihuana, drinking excessively and engaging in frequent sex.
Wake up, America. Your teens and young adults are doing the same. As stated earlier, the idolatry is clearly evident in the social media network of our sons and daughters. Since when can a college athlete who could be a future #1 draft pick be lauded for stating “I’m bout to get turnt up” on twitter days after winning an ESPY award while Chief Keef gets chastened for rapping about smoking, drinking and partying hard. If you don’t know, then getting “turnt up” is the umbrella term for smoking/drinking/partying. The hypocrisy is further evident in the fact that Keef and Miley Cyrus are paid entertainers. Yes, they are paid to act that way.
As curators for this nation’s future, it is important that we–teens, young adults and matrue adults–understand that we cannot afford to be absentee parents for our children. We cannot allow our children, at any age, to rely on the media for parental wisdom as a substitute for us. As stated previously, the “idols” in the entertainment industry are not in the business of becoming role models; ironically, they have succeeded in being a role model in outstanding fashion.
Miley Cyrus drinks, we drink. Keef smokes, we smoke. They talk about sex with multiple partners, we…well, you get the bigger picture. The number of twerk (officially in the Oxford dictionary) videos on Vine and on Instagram have exploded before and since the fallout of the Cyrus VMA incident. Dreads are back in style. Keep in mind that Miley Cyrus and Keef receive substantial compensation for their lavish lifestyle. Meanwhile, if they didn’t promote this lifestyle, there could be a chance they end up penniless and missing out on substantially more profitable ventures.
In conclusion, your actions DO have substantial consequences in the future. Do not let anyone fool you that a neck or breast tattoo will not impact your movement up the corporate ladder. Gold Grill? You can forget about it. Big rims on a car? A C-suite will not likely be in your future plans. Look, I promise I don’t know everything; all I ask is that you take responsibility for your own actions. Understand that the media actually belongs to the entertainment industry. Have you ever wondered how much Chief Keef and his record label generated in profits from the “I Don’t Like” video and single? If one was enterprising enough, it might become clear that those activities are precisely calculated.
All in the name of boosting his company’s bottom line. Parents, I challenge you to sit down with your hidden and unveil the truth on how the media and business go hand-in-hand. I encourage you to research the history of your favorite entertainers and comprehend the contrast between the entertainer’s persona and the actual person. You may be surprised about how warped your perception of reality is. Who knows, you may find out that the thug rapping about popping Molly and “moving kilos of cocaine” is a tenured professor at your local university.