Who’s your role model?

So, I’m reading an article in the Chicago Tribune this morning about the whole Miley Cyrus debacle. If your hiking party left you stranded in a cave for the last week and you have been blessed not to hear about it, young Ms. Cyrus is age 15 and star of Disney’s hit show Hannah Montana. She appears in a Vanity Fair photo shoot this month posed nude with a crumpled bed sheet across her various goodies. Congress is holding hearings and considering approving funding to send out oxygen tanks to help the hyperventilating hoardes breathe. (OK, I made that last part up.)

Anyhow, so I’m reading this article and the point of the whole thing is how parents are struggling with what to tell their kids because up until now, they have thought that the young actress-singer was a good ROLE MODEL for their daughters! Not a good and entertaining actress. Not an enjoyable singer of teeny-bopper music. But a good role model, showing legions of girls how to be a good, wholesome, attractive young woman in America. From the article:

So it is not surprising that parents are fuming. They, after all, have been the ones to shell out $500 for Hannah Montana concert tickets. They have proudly sent their children to school in Miley T-shirts. And they have happily watched with their kids the goofy television show in which Cyrus plays a music superstar, all the while patting themselves on the back for steering their children in the direction of a role model so wholesome. ” [emphasis mine]

So Sandra Day O’Conner and Condelliza Rice or their own mothers are no longer available for the job of role model? Have all the old biographies of Marie Curie or Rosa Parks or Florence Nightingale or Joan of Arc or Eleanor Roosevelt or Harriet Tubman been burned without my knowledge?

I mean seriously, how far do you have to have shoved your brain into your own behind to think that your daughter should be looking to a celebrity, no matter how apparently well behaved, for a role model?
I have never understood this whole idea of celebrities as role models thing. Role models for what? Celebrity is a dangerous thing and very few who play with it will be able to come out unscathed. Looking to celebrities for a model of how to a decent young woman is like looking to the Navy Seals for examples of how to be a pacifist. Pretty much by definition, you’re going to be disappointed.

So my oh-so-compassionate answer to parents who are “struggling” with the Miley Cyrus situation is to remove your brains from your posterior, return them to their proper location, explain that Ms. Cyrus is just one girl who is playing with fire and find a real role model for your daughters. Good heavens.

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3 thoughts on “Who’s your role model?

  1. Amen, Rebecca! When parents look to teen celebrities for role models for their children, there is something seriously sad about that.

    In addition to parental modeling, our society is so oddly fixated on the famous that we seem to have forgotten about the people who make a real difference. What about everyday heroes? Teachers buy supplies out of their own pockets? Doctors who offer their services to the poor for free? Volunteers who feed the homeless?

    Something needs to change, for sure.

    Like

  2. Pingback: Father - Daughter Affection « The Upside Down World

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