image by Julie Winegard
In a recent Billboard magazine interview, Miley Cyrus threw mad shade at Hip Hop culture for its “got my Rolex, got a girl on my cock” variety of misogyny and materialism. I immediately scratched my head in confusion – kind of like when I first heard Desiigner’s “Panda.” Admit it, y’all didn’t know what the F he was saying either. But I digress. Back to Miley and the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards. If you are lucky enough to have erased that atrocity from your brain matter, here’s a brief summary: Miley gyrated with foam finger (as faux penis) in hand, encircled by Black women who had twerking teddy bears on their backs. Then, as she was bent all the way over in a barely-there two piece, Robin Thicke came up from the back in a position best reserved for the strip club. I can’t lie – the whole time I was thinking: “oooooh, Paula gon’ be mad Robin?”
Fast-forward to four years later and Miley seems to be looking to forget the night. So why is Miley’s recent shade so problematic considering her twerking ghosts-of-MTV Awards-past? The list is exhaustingly long y’all.
First, I know you went through a “phase” Miley, but it’s quite repulsive to wear Black culture like a costume that’s suddenly inconvenient the day after Halloween cause you can’t get candy with it anymore. Like the Justins, Britneys, Christinas and Jonas Brothers of the world, Miley was once a pillar of innocence. And then, suddenly, BAM! Hannah Montana, once the poster child for sweet white womanhood, became a heroine for white freshman girls on every campus across America craving to be scantily clad and twerking their way through the weekend. And then, as if y’all weren’t thrown off enough, like that pizza order that arrives half a minute before its free, this corny stage show got cut short when Miley realized “coming of age” by “blackening” her sound and dance moves only pays off in America for a limited time offer. SMH.
Here’s why Miley’s got to be put on blast:
Wearing Black culture like a temporary fashion to prove you’re grown and ratchet is NOT cute. Matter of fact, its hella tired and extremely racist. Let me explain.
You see, Black culture is not the gateway to expressing your base nature and all that you have repressed. Black culture is not a fun way to free yo’ self when your hoity-toity white boss ain’t watching. Black culture isn’t intended to be caricatured and taken to be anything less than a community expressing themselves and their experiences. Truth is, I’m thinking you ain’t got good friends Miley. That is, no one to tell you that you’re a walking cliché. An “edgy” Rihanna-wannabe undercut hair style? Corn rows and grills? A Michael Jordan jersey and J’s? Running around with the Juicy J “bad-boys” of the world? All while making your white daddy mad and dropping your private-school looking boyfriend to take a walk on the “wild side”? Girl, we see you. You ain’t foolin’ NO ONE.
Here’s the thing: if the only commitment you have to black people is to exploit their creations, please take a take a stadium of seats. The Mileys of this world can dab, whip and nae-nae all they like, but where are they when we’re talking about gentrification, police brutality, or affirmative action? Oh, that’s right – these fraudulent white homies are silent. And don’t get me started on how America’s now defunct wannabe trap queen climbed into relevance by using Black women as props. How is she any better than Nelly whose been swippin’ credit cards in American backsides since 2000? Right. Pause for the side eye.
Miss Miley, I am sorry to inform you that Black culture will no longer be here when you need a “new” career change, a boost in sales, or industry credibility. You know why? Cause it’s racist, exploitative, and you actually got to to ride for Black people in these streets. You can’t just shift in and out of blackness when its useful, and then shed it when it comes time to “clean up” your “sullied” image to be a pillar of white womanhood for the mini-van majority. And targeting Hip Hop for its misogyny won’t do either. Especially when you trading it in for white genres that have equally long histories of misogyny. But we all know why she did it. Cause in Trump’s America, “white-is-right” and it’s a lot easier to demonize blackness than it is to call out white patriarchy.
So, what’s the solution? I’m sorry Miley, but we have no other choice but to send Solange for you. Best believe that she will not hesitate to revoke the pass you were wrongfully given.