Miley Cyrus and the Opposite of Respect

Women won’t gain equality until they make men respect them.

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Miley Cyrus and Robin Thicke performs onstage during the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards at the Barclays Center on Sunday, Aug. 25, 2013, in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Neilson Barnard/MTV/Getty Images)
Miley Cyrus performs with a foam finger in front of Robin Thicke at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards.

You've come a long way baby. That was the caption under the woman who looked like she had it all together in a Virginia Slims ad back in the day. Well after seeing Miley Cyrus' performance last night at the Video Music Awards ... clearly we haven't.

Cyrus' performance is just another example of how our society feels it is ok to give in to the objectification of females. And I say "females" rather than "women" because Cyrus looked like a prepubescent teen. This wasn't sexy, this wasn't hot, this was sad.

So is the fact of 18 women who finally came forward and forced the mayor of San Diego, Bob Filner, to resign. Eighteen women kept silent knowing this man had sexually harassed them. Eighteen women kept silent perhaps knowing deep down that he would/could do this to another woman. Why didn't anyone stop him before now? Why didn't anyone speak out? Isn't this 2013?!?

[See a collection of political cartoons on the economy.]

There was a time when women could not vote, fight in our military, hold powerful positions in politics or corporations – and that is no longer the case. But still, there are more women in Afghanistan's parliament than in our Congress and only 11 percent of women hold the top jobs in corporate America.

Women make up over 50 percent of the population of this country and over 50 percent of the population of the world; but we are still oppressed aren't we? Making 78 cents on the dollar a man gets paid the full buck on ... the list goes on.


As a woman and a mother with a young daughter, what sickens me is there was a time that it was wrong to rip your clothes off, wrong to show your tatas like so many young girls do on things like "Girls Gone Wild." I'm a liberal, I'm progressive and I'm certainly not a prude. But if we want men to respect us enough to pay us equally, view us in the professional world and the political world equally; then we first have to respect ourselves.

[See photos from the 2013 VMAs.]

Mothers, we need to take our daughters back! We need to teach them to respect themselves again.  Even Hillary Clinton being elected president (God willing!) will not change the way men perceive and treat women and girls, unless we show them right from wrong.

As Aretha Franklin sang: R-E-S-P-E-C-T. The women and girls of America must look at themselves every morning and cry out: "Respect me!" instead of, as Miley Cyrus seemed to sadly declare, Please, please notice me, I'll show you my naked body if you will!


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