What? What’s that you say? Miley Cyrus gave another interview that proves how clueless she is about the criticism directed at her for objectifying women in her performances?
Miley’s profile in the May 2014 issue of Elle is a lot uglier than her stunning cover photo. It starts off pretty awesome, with her discussing her breakup from Liam Hemsworth and how she no longer feels like she needs a boyfriend to survive… and it quickly unravels into an unsurprising mess. When asked whether or not she identifies as a feminist, Miley shed this bit of wisdom:
I’m just about equality, period. It’s not like, I’m a woman, women should be in charge! I just want there to be equality for everybody. I still don’t think we’re there 100 percent. I mean, guy rappers grab their crotch all fucking day and have hos around them, but no one talks about it. But if I grab my crotch and I have hot model bitches around me, I’m degrading women? I’m a woman– I should be able to have women around me! But I’m part of the evolution of that. I hope.
Hold on. I need a second to extract my palm from my face.
First of all, if you think “no one talks about” sexism in hip hop, you’re probably just ignoring those conversations. They’re never-ending. Second of all, it’s extremely possible for women to encourage– and participate in– institutionalized misogyny, as evidenced by Miley’s choice of words in this one little quote alone. I don’t buy that she’s reclaiming “bitch” and “ho” when she’s using those words in this context, explaining that men should continue to have free range over them.
On top of all that, Miley continues to prove that she’s completely oblivious about the nature of the criticism she’s received. Women can absolutely perform alongside other women, and nobody’s saying that her dancers can’t be sexual. The issue isn’t that they’re women, it’s that they’re women being treated like objects. They’re also primarily black women and little people: two groups that have been historically dehumanized and degraded far more often than their average-sized and white counterparts. If your feminism is along the lines of “how come only dudes are allowed to treat women like they’re toys when I want to, too,” you’re proving that we have a lot further to go.
This wouldn’t bug me so much if I hated Miley Cyrus. It’s really frustrating to see misguided quotes like this coming from someone who I do think is smart and I do think has the ability to influence positive change. I hope she’s able to grow up a bit and learn the difference between “haters” and people who are trying to explain how her actions negatively affect other people.
Via E! / Photo: Pacific Coast News