One of the things you learn as a parent, is that a child will do lots of things for attention. They are equally as willing to invest themselves in outrageous behaviour as they are in good. It boggles the mind, but when the goal is to focus people on themselves, kids are willing to try just about anything. We basically accept it as part of the maturation process and even highlight specific years with the expectation of the behaviour. Teenagers are particularly known for being incredibly narcissistic in their reasonings and approach to the world.
Parents also learn that while you cannot always control a child, you can have an impact in determent towards a behaviour, depending on your reaction. You can pay more attention to good behaviour and provide less to bad behaviour. When we focus on the bad behaviour, over-reacting and putting our time and energy into it, the child quickly understands that he has hit the pay load!! THIS is finally how to get mom and dads full attention, and in the absence of any other viable alternatives (that provide the attention they seek) they are completely willing to adopt this course of action.
Now we have a whole industry involved with “Public Relations” for people who are/want to be famous. We have all heard “even bad press is good press” ad nauseam. Once we had “stars” who were lifelong talent and personalities. We cared what these people were doing right up until they died. Musical Artists had careers that spanned decades, identified by the quality of their music which they managed to adapt to each new decade. Today we have Instant-Cup-o-soup celebrities who win a contest and get 5 minutes on stage before they disappear. We have kids who were Disney stars who evidently are given a free hall pass for future fame. The spotlight has no loyalty and is easily distracted by anything momentarily shiny. Many of these people are in the spotlight with no discernible talent and so what do they do to keep up there, selling records and making movies, and making tons of money which is the only way they know to value themselves?
They act as outrageously as possible so that the whole world is talking about them.
And it works.
They get the attention they seek. They even distract everyone from discussing imminent war and crisis around the world that should be concerning all of us.
So everyone can point at Miley Cyrus and accuse her of everything they like, they can make her attention grabbing performance appear to be about social issues that somehow makes our attention to this more relevant but the fact is she played the fame card perfectly.
We all bought it.
The worst thing for a “star” today is for no-one to be talking about them because we all have short attention spans and are easily bored. We want the latest, the greatest, the new ….
When you’re only a kid and you are already old news what else can you do except behave completely outrageously at the vma awards? And why are we pointing at her and saying “bad girl” when this is what has been modeled for all young women for years?
When’s the last time people paid as much attention to some young wholesome girl who just got on the stage and sang with a great voice? Borrrrring. We demand performances with our talent. We want sensory overload. We are the consumers and we are actually the power here. Can we really blame anyone but ourselves?
If you don’t like the reflection in the mirror, don’t blame the mirror. Miley Cyrus banked on our reaction and she hit pay dirt.