Friday, July 18, 2008

Bad Messages Are Not New

My 5 year old is a huge Hannah Montana fan. She (and therefor, I) have seen every episode hundreds of times.

Much has been made over the last few months of Myley Cyrus being a bad role model for young girls - her "sexy" pictures in Vanity Fair (although I think if you find a 15 year old looking like she stumbled out of the back of a rapist's van sexy you have your own set of problems...) and most recently some cell phone pictures someone took of her fully dressed in a shower backstage at some concert.

I don't disagree entirely, but I am not concerned when it comes to my daughter. She doesn't watch Extra, she doesn't read TMZ and she certainly doesn't have a subscription to Vanity Fair. As far as she is concerned, Hannah/Myley's entire world is inside our TV. She enjoys the show and until I think she is being influenced by Miley's life outside the TV I am not concerned.

I would be more concerned about her watching "Grease." That mainstay of our childhood that has since been replaced by "High School Musical." Why? Because the bad message is embeded INSIDE the movie.

Olivia Newton-John plays Sandy. A sweet, innocent girl who wears sweaters over her Mormon-like dress and pretty bows in her hair.

She meets Danny. A gang member who smokes, cuts class, tries to feel her up and fights with other boys. He captures her heart. He, being to cool for school, shuns her to look cool in front of his friends. And how does the story resolve itself? Does Danny reform his ways and realize what an amazing, moral girl she is? Does he stand up to his friends and tell them to fuck off? No. Instead Sandy completely changes her entire identity to please her man...

Is THAT a message we want to send to our daughters? If someone doesn't like you for who you are...well, just change into whomever they want you to be!

I am not standing on a soapbox and to be honest I am not even super passionate about the above argument. I bring it up just to point out to all the parents out there that think "media today has warped our kids minds" and how irresponsible teen stars are today - it aint' nothin' new.