Okay, so there’s a huge amount of nonsense flying around about this Vanity Fair picture of Miley Cyrus. And I agree, actually – it is a problematic picture. But really, come on, it’s not pornographic in any way. It’s not even really inappropriate for a 15 year old. The problem is not that the picture was taken, but rather that it should not have been published. A 15 year old should not have sexual images printed in magazines or books or published on-line.
This is a really very similar argument to the basis for my post (and the following comments) on Jock Sturges’ images of nude teenage girls. It boils down to teenage girls not being fully prepared to deal with the repercussions of people looking at naked images of her (potentially both immediate and long-term). Miley Cyrus is currently dealing with the immediate, short-term repercussions of her image. Long-term repercussions might include the image being dug up in forty years when she’s running for Senate or trying to become a pastor of a church.
So the picture isn’t the problem, but rather where it was published.
I read an interesting post today about Miley’s choice, basically saying that it’s just fine for a 15 year old to be sexual and that it’s hypocritical and unhelpful to pretend that 15 year olds aren’t sexual. Basically, I agree with the author. 15 year olds are sexual beings, whether or not they’re famous. And no one should have to apologize for being sexual.