Like millions of other young girls in this country, my daughters have been raised with the Disney girls. My eldest was a long time fan of both Lyndsey Lohan and Hillary Duff and witnessed with disbelief as their girl-next-door appearances slipped into sex symbol and their lives slipped out of control in a world that seemed to devour them whole. Where were their parents I wondered as they made bad choice after bad choice? Disney fame seemed to be a curse for the girls who grew up as role models for so many young girls.
My youngest daughter has been a fan of Hannah Montana for years. The values and lessons in the show, with her real Dad at her side, were a comfort to us and we somehow believed that she would escape the fate of her predecessors. My daughter would say, “She’s from the south, her dad won’t let her do sexy music videos…” I don’t know, maybe they left her for a long vacation, because it is hard to believe that her parents or the Disney executives who promote Hannah Montana would be okay with the soft porn music video, “Can’t be Tamed” that she just released.
The line between pornography and music videos has been blurry for a long time. A quick look at Christina Aguilera in her new porn feature (music video) Not Myself Tonight demonstrates that there really is no line that pornography has not crossed in our hip-hop culture. Female equals sexualized if you hope to get any attention. And apparently 16 is not too young to turn a Disney girl into the next piece of meat for us to devour.
The message is clear to all the pre-adolescent girls out there bearing witness to the seemingly inevitable transition from teenager to sex symbol. Overt and intimidating sexual maturity is what makes female stars valuable. I am not sure whether the visuals or the lyrics are more disturbing. Several women in the audience are wearing birdcages as hats. Miley herself is cast as a new form of life, with wings, who is also caged. Yet as her sexual energy increases, she breaks out of the cage. All the while singing how she can’t be tamed and she goes through men like money…. Oh good. The girl is 16. So much for the sweet sixteen and the romantic allure of young love.