Monday, April 28, 2008

Where Are The Parents

So let me start by saying that, when it comes to the world of art, I am all for "L'art pour l'art". I try to keep an open mind when an artist goes avant garde, even though it may seem a little over the top. I really try.

Today's scandal is circulating around Miley Cyrus, who, at the very vulnerable age of 15, posed for the cover of Vanity Fair without any clothes, draped only in a sheet. Her back is fully exposed and, while everything else is covered, the image is pretty provocative. And, again, she is fifteen and a role model to more than a few, very young and impressionable girls.

Other shots in the magazine are a little more subdued, showing her with her famous (D-list) father and a few tamer pictures. And, of course, the reaction to such a young girl in such a suggestive image is completely expected, and the cynic in me believes that may have been the exact intention (forget about homeroom and homecoming...she must think of her career).

Also as expected, everyone is back tracking. Miley claims to be embarassed, the parents claim to have had no idea, and apologies abound. On the other side, Vanity Fair and Annie Lebowitz (the famed photographer and architect of the shoot) are both discounting the parents' feigned ignorance, and even going so far as to produce footage showing the process of the shoot, with everyone laughing, smiling, and perfectly okay with what is transpiring.

All of this begs the question, who's to blame?

Not Miley...she is living in quite an interesting little vacuum and entirely too young to make such judgement calls when she is surrounded by adults telling her what to do. When I think of who I was in 9th grade, I just assumed everyone had my best intentions in mind all the time...she probably does as well.

Not easy scapegoat, but not in this case.

Vanity Fair....not exactly a moral high ground, but they were also not the ones in charge of how the shoot played out.

Not even the photographer....I realize Annie Lebowitz is insanely popular (I'm actually not a huge fan), but she is also well respected for her involvement and interaction with her subjects. She apparently shares everything she shoots with surprises, in other words.

Which leaves us with the parents. They were there the entire time, they are her guardians, and they let her down in this one.

Am I wrong?

I really dislike The View, but I think Whoopi Goldberg really got this one right:

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