This very recent controversial news about Miley Cyrus performance at the VMA’s has raised questions on the image that she is presenting to everyone, including young fans. Parents are concerned that this may affect their children in a negative way. There had also been accusations that Mileys show had been racist, as there were Africa-Americans ‘twerking’ in the background as backup dancers. Some had said that it made it seem that the African-American were presented as ‘less’ than Miley. People were also saying that this was a bad image of what women should be and that she misused her feminism and women rights. Is it the duty of an idol to carry the burden of acting responsible? Or is it the duty of the public to not judge too harshly given the fact that she is a normal 20 year old under all the fame and publicity? Or is it okay for Miley to act the way she is because of human rights and freedom?
The answer is no. When she was becoming an idol, she should’ve known that she would have to be responsible as she is a major role model for her fans. However, she is not acting the way she should, and in turn is badly influencing her fans. This then turns to Ethics of care. She is meant to safeguard her fans by thinking about their specific interests and promote them, not to make them become bad. She isn’t acting the way that she should be, and doing her duty as an idol by being a good role model for her fans. Utilitarianism is also an important issue here as she is impacting majority of the public in a negative way. Mileys motive seems to be about turning a new leaf, not for the better, and shedding her Disney character. Some people had been offended by her performance in the VMA’s because she was abusing her feminism and women’s rights by being scantily clad in a skin-colour bikini.
Not only that, she was seen as racist because of her backup dancers, who were african-american, as it made it seem that she was ‘above’ them, as she was the main dancer. She also, in the midst of all the mugging and twerking she was doing on stage, paused to spank the behind of a Africa American, and that was what really drove people to see this as racist. What is worse is that MTV is promoting acts like this forming a bad example for children, especially since Miley Cyrus was a child star. MTV’s motive is to gain money from the public and gain publicity while the stars do atrocious acts to gain attention. This would be judged as bad, according to Kant’s ethics which is about the motive, not the consequences.