To show you how goofed up our values are and our ridiculous embrace of a corrupt popular culture, Miley Cyrus and her daily bawdy antics and vulgar performances are constantly in a media starved for the unusual.
Miley, no fool when it comes to self-promotion, knows that youthful Americans are hooked on this type of behavior, and so she continues her classless performances and lifestyle. Youthful Americans are head over heels with Miley’s songs – Party in the U.S.A is now a “classic” and Wrecking Ball has over 227 million hits on YouTube!
Then there is Pakistani teenager Malala Yousafzai, who narrowly missed death in an assassination attempt by the Taliban as she was riding a bus home from school. Malala is an outspoken supporter of education for young girls and so infuriated the Taliban that they marked her for death. Thankfully, she survived and is making the rounds promoting her book and speaking forcefully about the importance of education, especially for young girls in Muslim societies.
Now I haven’t seen any poll about how many teens recognize Miley Cyrus compared to Malala Yousafzai, but I would bet my mortgage that Miley has a huge advantage over Malala in terms of name and face recognition, and despite her outrageous behavior, Miley is now the Queen of Pop Culture. As for Malala she has a following, primarily among the over 40 crowd, but is no match for Miley when it comes to popularity. In a huge slight, Malala did not receive the Nobel Peace Prize this year.
It would be great if Malala were held up to such adulation as Miley, but we remain stuck in a popular culture that rewards boorish behavior and pays scant attention to brave heroines who risk death to make life better for others. Miley will go on with her act and make millions, while Malala will sell a respectable number of books but retreat into the background of international news. Thankfully, Malala will continue her fight to educate young girls and change the face of radical Islamism, while Miley will just twerk.