I was in 5th grade on 9/11/01. I had just learned what a period was, I had never been kissed, I wore Spider-Man T-shirts from the boys’ section of Macy’s. I was 10 years old. I was young. I knew nothing.
I was sitting in the middle of my north New Jersey classroom when Wildwood Elementary’s school guidance counselor interrupted class to ask us a very exciting question. She was a maternal, nurturing lady. I had come to her a few times regarding making friends in my new school. She looked different, although I couldn’t put my finger on it. She was short of breath, as if this wasn’t the first classroom she had rushed into. I remember her voice being shaky, but she was usually so calm. She had that amazingly relaxing guidance counselor voice. I didn’t care why she looked nervous, the only thing that mattered was that she interrupted our morning class with a strange question. It was out of the ordinary. This had never happened.
She muttered, “Hi. I’m sorry to interrupt, but does anyone in this class have a parent who works in New York City?”
My dad worked in New York City, and I was always very proud of him and his work. Growing up in a conservative area of New Jersey, I thought my dad was the coolest person within miles, as he was an Editor for Nickelodeon. I shot my hand up with boastful excitement. The praise I was expecting to receive from the guidance counselor’s actually eyes spawned the complete opposite reaction. I’ll never forget how she looked at me: An adult had never looked at me like that. She pitied me. She was past concern. She was devastated for me in a way I had yet to understand, and I didn’t know why.
A few other kids raised their hands. Most people in our area worked in Manhattan. She looked at us with a terror I had never seen in an adult before, a terror I could not yet comprehend.
She hesitated, then struggled with her next few words:
“Ok. Did your father go to work this morning?”
She exchanged a glance with my teacher, then left in a hurry. My teacher looked concerned, but I don’t think she knew what was going on yet. The class resumed with no mention of that strange interaction.
I asked to go to the bathroom, and on my way there, I ran into my neighbor Joel. He said the teachers were all watching TV in the library. This was an absolute rarity. Televisions and libraries did not mix. Adding to the wildly bizarre mystique of this day, I asked him why.
He excitedly said, “I don’t know, but kids aren’t allowed in there.” We walked by the library, full of intrigue, trying to catch a glimpse of the action. We saw that big old TV strapped to a rolling cart that we got to watch on days when we had a substitute. That TV was so fun. We saw a bunch of teachers gathered around it. But before we could nurture our curiosity, a teacher saw us and rushed our wide-eyes away from the door.
I returned to Ms. Kenny’s science classroom and sat down. Ms. Kenny looked the same way my guidance counselor looked now, nervous. She was young. A redhead. Sweet. I wish I remembered more about the behaviors of others that day; I imagine there must have been teachers scrambling through the hallways, but all I remember was this sense of quiet panic, or panic that was meant to be hidden from us.
An announcement sounded over the loudspeaker requesting my neighbors and I to come to the office. How bizarre, I thought. I had never been called to the office without knowing why; it was always for getting in trouble, or leaving school early. And why were they requesting all my friends and I at once? I asked Ms. Kenny why so many kids were getting called to the office this day. She said I had a dentist appointment. Perplexing. In front of the whole class, I said, “no I don’t.” She urged me to go. Though stumped, I was excited to get called to the office with all my friends.
When I got to the office, my mom and dad were there with my neighbors’ parents and all the kids, my little sister included. We were all 10 or younger, and buzzing with excitement, wondering why we were so lucky to have our parents pick us up together. But something was up. Not all the parents were there. Both of mine were, but only the moms of my friends were there. I asked my parents what was going on, reassuring them that I didn’t have a dentist appointment. Our parents told us we were having another block party, ushering us out of the office and into the parking lot.
Our neighbors’ families were very close, and two weeks earlier, we had had our annual block party. The kids were even more excited now. Our parents had finally become awesome: taking us out of school in the morning to recreate a second block party?! This day was turning out to be way more exciting than I had expected.
We all walked home together, as we lived a couple blocks from the elementary school. Just as we were approaching the Boulevard, my friend, who was the smart one of all of us, bragged, “I heard the World Trade Center burned down.”
“What’s that?” I inquired. I had never heard of it. She shrugged, unsure herself.
“I think it’s the Twin Towers.” Now that I knew. I loved the Twin Towers. Every time we visited dad at work, the best part was sitting on the Helix just before the Lincoln Tunnel and counting the 3 best buildings; The Empire State Building and the Twin Towers.
I don’t remember much between that moment and arriving home. My dad turned our big TV on and that was the first time I saw the image: My two favorite buildings on fire with a big hole in them.
“Are we not having a block party?” I asked desperately, stumped.
“We lied. We wanted us all to be together. We were scared.” My mom had cried. I could tell.
World Trade Center. Terrorists. The Middle East. These were words I had never heard before, or maybe I had but they didn’t have enough weight with me to stick. I didn’t understand.
As it turned out, my dad never made it into the city that day. He stopped at our friend’s house first and was going into work late. He was his own boss, so he could do that. He and his friend saw it happen on TV. Our neighbors’ dads weren’t home yet, though. They weren’t their own bosses. No one could reach them.
One of them called. One of them didn’t.
I remember the grueling waiting process all our neighbors went through. I put on a somber face because it seemed like I was supposed to. This day wasn’t the fun day I was expecting. It was a day of lies. I felt uncomfortable. I had never known anyone to die. I mean, I knew my grandparents would die at some point, but I didn’t know people could die like this.
I remember my neighbor’s mom collapsing in the street when her husband’s car pulled into the driveway. Or maybe I don’t remember it. Maybe I remember my parents’ recount of it every day for months. Everyone was home. Everyone was safe.
All of our families climbed to the top of The Tourne, a hiking mountain in our town that had an incredible view. We hiked the fun way, through the woods behind our neighborhood, which I had never done. Our parents were letting us do a lot of fun stuff. Everyone was together. Everyone was happier, but barely. I remember hearing the parents’ whispers of other parents who hadn’t heard from their spouse yet. It was all speculation, rumors.
When we reached the top of the Tourne, we could see for miles. I felt like we were on top of the world. We could see our rival sports towns. We could see so many trees. We could see New York City. We could see the smoke.
I remember taking a deep breath, realizing that the Empire State Building was alone now. How lonely for New York. My dad said I wouldn’t see the Twin Towers anymore. That upset me. Why not? They’re not gonna get fixed? This was the only loss I felt. I didn’t understand. I put my hand over my mouth like all the adults were doing.
I looked at my friends and could see it all over their faces; they didn’t understand either. We were just pretending to be sad because we knew we had to be— but we were so genuinely confused. We couldn’t understand why we were sad.
The Weeks Following
There was a great amount of loss in our area, in our town, in our school. It took days to confirm certain people’s death. Some were never confirmed, they were just never heard from again. I remember some kids didn’t show up to school for a few days. I remember Ms. Kenny’s classroom, and realizing one of the other kids who raised their hand at the guidance counselor’s weird question wasn’t there. He didn’t come back to school. His dad died. It was months before we saw him again.
There was so much speculation and rumor. I felt bad about it. I really did. I was happy my dad didn’t go into the city that day. A lot of my friends were happy like I was. I have endless recounts of stories from childhood friends whose parent had “just escaped,” parents who saved someone’s life, parents whose best friend died, parents who saw it all happen and couldn’t run, just stare…They were all just stories to me. It was the first time I came to understand the expression “it was a blessing.” Yes, it was a blessing my father’s day went the way it did. Most of my friends learned about “blessings” that day.
I thought about fate. I thought about how something in the universe prevented my dad and my friends’ parents from going to Manhattan. Something out there helped them, I thought. But no one helped the kids’ parents who did die. Why? They were all really amazing kids. Better than me, smarter than me. I didn’t get it. I was faced with a moral crisis; I didn’t get it.
It took years for the sadness to settle in. In the five anniversaries that followed, 9/11 was defined by confusion for me. The first anniversary, I was supposed to be sad again. I was supposed to remember. Of course I remembered. I was supposed to feel sad. But I didn’t.
On the second anniversary, I felt scared. I was 12, and I realized how scary terrorism was. I had nightmares about it. I started living in constant fear of being bombed, of war, of death. And so I was scared that it would happen again on the anniversary; they would pour salt in the wound.
A few years later, I cried. I finally understood what had happened. It was heartbreaking and upsetting and confusing. I wish I had said something to the boy in my class whose life changed that day. Those poor, innocent people were never the same. They were so good, so undeserving of such tragedy.
I felt survivor’s guilt. I understood why everyone was scared and sad that day, but I couldn’t understand why it had happened. I felt bad for engaging in the rumors and playground storytelling in the weeks that followed 9/11/01. My friends would gossip about how it all happened; how certain people we knew had died.
“I heard she watched a fireman die.”
“I heard his mom almost got out before it collapsed.”
“I heard she tried to kill herself after her brother died.”
“I heard she called him when the smoke filled her lungs. He heard her die.”
It was fucked up. It’s disgusting to look back on the things I heard on the playground those following weeks. But we didn’t understand. How could a child understand that kind of pain and terror?
13 years later, I’m disappointed in myself as a child for not feeling what I was supposed to. I’m angry that I didn’t react how I was supposed to, for being so unaware of my surroundings, of life. I was a kid. If the adults couldn’t understand, how could I?
I live in California now and a lot of people don’t get it, the way I didn’t get it. They were so far removed from it. They don’t know an innocent person who died. They don’t know the kid who didn’t come back to school for months, or the woman who spoke to her husband for the last time over the phone. They never had relatives call them and cry when they answered. I saw the smoke. I saw the pain before I felt the pain. I don’t feel guilty anymore for not understanding. Childhood is so precious. It’s so innocent. It’s something to be treasured and cherished. It’s sacred. But it cannot be protected.
“She’s really funny, but not in a way that just girls think are funny, she’s just really funny,” said the man who most recently regurgitated his chauvinism on to me.
I say “most” recently because as a female comedian, I hear statements like this constantly. The specimen felt as if he was praising this woman’s career. Instead, in one fell swoop he stripped away any validity to what women find funny, as if to say what women find funny isn’t actually funny at all, it’s just silly or mindless. He actually thought he could legitimize this woman’s career by comparing it to what men find funny: a funny that is better, smarter, a higher level of philosophy. *Cue GIF of Blair Waldorf rolling her eyes.*
We talk about women in backhanded compliments. We examine them, pick them apart and even weigh their appearances and gender over their intellectuality: traits which should be infinitely separate. Now, before you “NOT ALL MEN” me, or try to explain over this article that you cannot talk over because it is an article on the internet, I want to show you some comments men have said to me regarding my career as a female comedian, and why they are important.
“I hate Emma Stone because her lips are weird. I would never want her sucking my dick.”
REAL. THAT IS A REAL COMMENT. Someone actually said this to me and expected me to laugh, and I did, because I was 18 and he was in his late 20s, so I figured he was an experienced comedian. But, after having 4 years to mull this bullshit over…
Let me get this straight. You don’t like Emma Stone because you can’t picture her sucking your dick? That’s funny, because I only listen to musicians who I can picture going down on me, which is why I never listen to Simon and Garfunkel.
In the theater watching a trailer for The Other Woman: “I bet 98% ‘a the people that show up to that crap are women.”
Yeah, cause women like crappy stuff. Let me try and level with you. You’re saying the content of this movie revolves around women; this is a terrible trailer for an equally horrible movie; thus, this is the perfect opportunity for girls to get together and dress in fluffy bunny slippers and have a pillow fight while masturbating on each other. Just because this is a “crap” movie, does not mean women are going to come flocking to it like it’s an open casting call for the Lizzie McGuire reboot.
It has become so commonplace for people to say they hate actors like Cameron Diaz or Drew Barrymore because they’re “too girly.” How is that an insult? You’re allowed to hate Drew Barrymore for the “lath blatht mathcara” commercials, but not because she’s appealing to women. Being appealing to women doesn’t correlate to being a thing of “crap.”
If being “girly” is an insult, and dude-comedy is so much “better,” then women must enjoy sitting through movies that are an hour and a half-long dick joke, right? Do you think we like seeing a cast of men pursuing a girl who they treat as an object with no real character, views, opinions, conviction or ability to make a decision on her own? Do we love to see the only girl character in a comedy as just a thing to be pursued, and the men will change her mind, and they will get her because she has no choice, because they are men, and she is a thing?
“I actually like Leslie Mann because she’s funny AND hot.”
The specimen continued, “she’s cool, but she’s not manly cool, she’s just really hot.” Well what if Leslie Mann was manly (pun)? If she was butch, would that somehow detract from her “cool” dude-funny image? In fact, what does Leslie Mann or Emma Stone’s appearance have absolutely anything to do with their comedic timing? Girls don’t think Seth Rogen is funny because he’s relatable AND fuckable. Sorry, Seth Rogen, I’m just trying to stop the oppression here. And I would still make out with you god what am I saying.
“I hate that I can’t say I hate Lena Dunham without sounding like I hate women.”
I’m sorry, do you hate women? Then why are you ending your sentence with that defensive tone? Saying something like, “I don’t hate women, but…” is the same as saying “I’m not a racist, but…” As soon as you say that, we all know you’re a racist fuck. Giving that “disclaimer” is like asking for our sympathy about how hard it is to live a life where someone will jump down your throat the second you express hatred towards women. Wow, that must be so hard for you to feel oppressed by a society where you can’t say what you truly feel because someone might stereotype you based on your gender. What a burden for YOU, MAN.
Stop acting all, “god, it’s stressing me out that I can’t say whatever I want without sounding like a total dick.” BREAKING: You are a total dick.
“You’re funny for a girl.”
This ejaculation of ignorance is important to me because it was said to me when I got hired for my first writing job. It was the first time a man who was a few years my elder, more experienced, and someone I looked up to told me I was funny. At the time, it validated me and my career aspirations. It made me feel like I could actually succeed in pursuing comedy as a career. It wasn’t until years later when I felt shame for believing these words were something of a compliment to me. It’s heartbreaking that we live in a society where saying “like a girl” is a way to discredit or reduce someone—not to mention, a society of young, impressionable girls, like me, who are raised to not immediately pick up on the backhanded compliment there.
This just in: My vagina isn’t tell the jokes! If you think I’m funny, you can just say, “you’re funny.” Don’t try to make me out to be “cute” or “adorable.” I want you to look closer and hear how derogatory these words are. It’s time to stop criticizing females based on their appearance. Stop criticizing them based on gender. Stop using “girly” as a derogatory term. And for the love of God who is probably a woman closely related to Angelina Jolie, stop saying “girly” like it’s a bad thing.
I’ll leave you with this nugget of wisdom:
“I don’t like Whitney Cummings because her whole shtick is just hating on men.”
Wow, an entertainer who oppresses the opposite sex? God, that must be crazy for you to sit through. See: all of entertainment.
There’s a new band on the block called 5 Seconds of Summer. I know it may look like they’re a boy band made up of 17-year olds… They are. But they’re not your everyday swoon-worthy One Direction hair models. If you’re in your twenties, like me, then you may be trying to avoid liking this band. You may think to yourself:
You know what, I’m getting too old for this shit. I can’t be sitting around the workplace listening to a tweeny-bopper boy-band anymore. I have to stop pretending I love Justin Bieber in a purely ironic way. My love for him is real and true.
I’ve gone through this too, but I’m a patriot and a martyr for my generation, which is why I’m here to tell all you twenty-somethings who are wondering if you’re too old to listen to 5 Seconds Of Summer that it’s OK! You CAN like them without being called a pedophile! Here’s why:
THE POP-PUNK REVIVAL; It’s real, it’s here, and it’s happening live in real time.
5 Seconds of Summer are bravely going (is it brave?) where no man (boy) has gone before (they have, in 2003). Us twenty-somethings grew up in an era where middle school/high school angst was defined by pop-punk “emo music.” Short for “emotional,” but realistically translated as “trendy,” emo music was the gold standard of the pubescent coming-of-age story. What did emo music sound like, you ask? Like pop-punk guitars with Warped Tour stickers, a zest of quirkiness, and a dash of “I cried when I wrote this.” Voila: Pop-punk.
Why You Want to Listen:
While it was horrible to go through, pop-punk was our shoulder to cry on when our first love told us he was gay. Pop-punk was there for us when black eyeliner and black nail-polish were cool for both genders. Pop-punk was there when we lied about trying pot for the first time, got sent to the hospital for chugging watermelon-flavored Smirnoff, and made out with braces on. And yes, pop-punk was there for us when we got caught looking at porn with our “bad friend” Jessica Palowski. And now, pop-punk is making a comeback, and we are more emotionally stable than ever to deal with its second coming.
What You Want to Listen to:
Just listen to “18” and tell me it doesn’t throw you back to “Stacy’s Mom”. Listen to “Beside You” and die over how much you feel those teenage feels and tingles in your danger zone. And listen to “Amnesia” and accidentally cry in your car alone even though you don’t have a significant other to feel that way about. Rock out to “Don’t Stop” and “Mrs. All American.” For the love of god, put on your studded converse high-tops and black jelly bracelets and score a beer from your dad’s fridge to “Good Girls” and “Kiss Me Kiss Me.”
Where to Listen:
Although they should sell it in the form of burned CDs with black sharpie scribbles drawn by your first crush who skateboards and was like, totally edgy… It’s on Spotify, iTunes, and Google Play (whatever the fuck that is).
Go forth, reminisce, and do NOT feel creepy about liking a band of teenage boys, because remember: they’re not a boy band, they’re a band-band. They’re your favorite headliner at Bamboozle 2005, they’re the first band you crowd-surfed to, and they’re your sexual awakening. They’re real instruments, simple, heartfelt lyrics, catchy guitar riffs, impeccably melodic harmonized vocals, and they’re an epic air-drum solo alone in my car…OK I AM LISTENING TO THEM IN MY CAR.
So look back and regret everything you were doing the first time you were into pop-punk, twenty-somethings, but let this nostalgia ring true throughout your whole body. It’s pure, it’s “emotional,” and it reminds us of the scariest and most hormonally aggressive times of our lives. 5 Seconds of Summer’s self-titled album is there for you to cry to about not being 17 anymore and having a job at a real estate company that you don’t fucking care about. It’s time to put your black band t-shirts back on, twenty-somethings. Stand on your desk, kick that nerdy IT guy in the back and let your words ring throughout the cubicles: “I LOVE 5 SECONDS OF SUMMER!”
^ I made this picture of me & Old Lady Jill.
I watched Jill have sex today. Just kidding, she watched me have sex. Her name is Carol, she is a stuffed pug, and we are running away together to be married. Cosmo says half of love is sexual attraction so I’m at absolute least half in love.***
Idiot Aunt Jill booked a flight today for a weekend in NYC. ‘Cept um… SHE FORGOT ABOUT ME. Obviously I would want to go to New York City! I’m a bad ass bitch with an Achilles Tendon for couture. She doesn’t think things through. I don’t think she’s very smart. I’ll be fine, I’m just worried about Jill being on her own for 4 days.
She came home late 2 nights in a row this week so I gave her a couple taps on the bum. I also attempted to eat her contacts and earplugs upwards of 17 times and she wouldn’t let me. She is a tyrant and she must be eliminated.
I hate to say it but… I’m actually coming to like Jill. I can’t let on though. I need to play hard to get and steal her bra the same amount of times per day. Assuming of course that I’m Regina George, Jill is kind of like my Cady Heron, but in the beginning of the movie when she’s vaguely African and socially retarded. I keep trying to show her the proper way to urinate on a wood floor, but she just cannot comprehend. It’s endearing. Hopefully by the end of these torturous two months she won’t be chewing socks like a fucking amateur.
Anyway, string string string, bone string, fart.
Love money party,
***Editor’s note: This did not happen. Sadie seems to be playing up the idea that she has a sex drive, but she doesn’t. She’s a late bloomer and all the other dogs have already gotten have their periods. It’s natural for her to want the same for herself. I haven’t talked to her about “spaying” yet…
A guest post from a dog named Sadie:
My name is Sadie, I’m 8 months old, and my mom went away for 2 months today. It’s kind of bullshit, but also a totally new experience for me, and Cosmo always says to be open minded and try new things in & out of the bedroom (not sure what that means). She left me with her friend Jill, who calls herself “Cool Aunt Jill.” Newsflash: she’s not that cool. I mean, she’s from New Jersey and hates Bruce Springstein, so that’s kind of edgy, but the orange color she has on her nails is unforgivable. I think I’m supposed to be babysitting her or something? Idk, it’s unclear why she’s here, but she’s easy to manipulate so it’s fine.
Today was ok. Jill watched this show about lesbians in prison, but the content was a bit boring for my taste, so I just did my own thing. I pooped in the bedroom, the bathroom, my room, under the TV, and once outside. My favorite part of the day was when she put on pajama shorts that had a really long pull-string. So I jumped up, grabbed the string, and pulled her pants down in one fell swoop. I dragged them into my room and they’re still sitting in my water bowl. Jill went upstairs to put new pants on, but I’m pretty sure our neighbors saw her in her thong. LOL.
I’m pretty full because of the smorgasbord mom left for me. I ate a piece of a banana peel, the door, the wall, the table, the floor, napkins, a paper towel, and a questionable piece of cement outside. I took Jill for a walk and we talked to this guy standing alone on a street corner in Hollywood for a bit. Jill wouldn’t let me talk to him for long though. She said she thought he was creepy, but it’s just so obvious she doesn’t know how to handle herself around men. Then her sister came over and they watched the Miley Cyrus Bangerz Tour special on NBC. I joined them, because Miley = queen, no doy…
All in all though, Jill was pretty good today. She only tried to yell at me once, which was hilarious because I slapped her in the fucking face. She knows I’m the boss, and when she tells me to come sit with her, I stare at her until she forgets. Then, I sit with her. This is my house, bitch. Never forget that.
I’ll check back in tomorr—SQUIRREL!
(Photo courtesy of WireImage; Kevin Mazur)
UPDATE: Thought Catalog has published this article. Please share their link instead: http://thoughtcatalog.com/jillian-emma/2014/03/why-miley-cyrus-is-actually-a-feminist/
The lights go out. The arena’s dull roar turns to exasperating chaos. A woman in her 40s wearing librarian glasses, a leopard blazer, and work-heels raises her gin and tonic to the air. The gay men start screaming “YAS, GIRL, YAS!!!” A group of hammered straight guys with snapbacks point to their sweatshirts, shamelessly sporting a now iconic tongue-faced portrait of a pop star. Kellan Lutz, Diane Keaton, Sarah Paulson, and 7,200 girls wearing little hair buns walk by. Where the hell am I? I’m at the Miley fucking Cyrus Bangerz Tour, and I’m hugging strangers I’m so happy.
My favorite part of the Bangerz Tour was all of it—but more specifically was when I heard someone in the crowd say Miley Cyrus wasn’t a feminist, which I found hilarious. How could you think Miley Cyrus isn’t a feminist? Just because she shows a little booty and fake-sucked Abe Lincoln’s dick in front of 18,000 people? What a surface observation! Miley Cyrus doesn’t give a fuck about you and your opinions, which is actually how she catapulted herself into the world of feminism.
Let me lay it out for you. Sir David Jason said to The Sun, “Miley Cyrus epitomises what we have allowed. She has done it to break the mould. I can understand why, but we have given her the oxygen of publicity and encouraged it, so young girls will think it is the right way to attract men. We’ve lost our standards.”
The “standards” Sir David Jason refers to are a set of rules that he believes our society has set for women to lead successful lives. And how does a woman do that, you ask? Well, a woman must attract a man in the right way, of course, then she can go on with her life of doing nothing but being there for her man who needs her for, well, nothing. We, as a society, haven’t lost our standards; we’ve shattered them. This quote enrages me more than my roommate who doesn’t know who Snape is. It astounds me that there are still people out there on the same planet as me who think like this… but what’s worse is that we have given him the “oxygen” and “publicity” to do so.
(Photo courtesy of Getty Images)
What if Miley Cyrus isn’t sexualizing herself for the men; What if it’s for the women? (Insert distasteful lesbian joke here). You guys, stop thinking feminism is about being a respectful woman with a respectful career and performing respectful behaviors.
Girls like having sex. The problem is, girls get scared to express that they enjoy sex because of slut-shaming. Slut-shaming is one of the worst things on Earth next to veganism. If a boy’s freak-number is 25, he’s a straight killer. In fact, why hasn’t he had MORE sex than that? IS HE AMISH?! However, if a girl has that same number, she’s your typical STD-ridden brothel bucket. That’s unfair. Feminism means one and only one thing: equality. It does NOT mean a deep, burning, putrid hatred of men, nor does it mean painting a vagina on your face and killing first born sons in your spare time. It’s ever-so-simply about establishing women and men on the same level in all aspects. Sex is one of those aspects.
Rihanna’s more recent albums are about hot sex, female desire and empowerment. The entirety of Rihanna’s song “Birthday Cake” is about a guy going down on her; something that is beyond widely spoken about in rap music, but from the male perspective. In fact, giving head is one of the top tiered subjects in rap music, next to (1) money, (2) bitches, and (3) no yeah, bitches. This is exactly what the Bangerz tour was like. It was a Blendini of Honey Boo-Boo country pageant queens, hip-hop music, and vagina. Miley grabbed her crotch more than Eminem, and it was awesome. Every woman there was hailing Miley like she was Kate Middleton’s Baby.
(Photo courtesy of Getty Images; Suzi Pratt)
Most of the concert attendees are the same group who probably listened 2-Chainz earlier that day. 2-Chainz, the one who actually raps, “if yo girl don’t swallow kids, man that hoe basic” OUT LOUD. So, when Miley sings, “You’re sexy sexy, I got things I want to do to you, Make me make me, Make my tongue just go do-do-do,” why does it get labeled as inappropriate? And when Rihanna sings, “suck my cockiness, lick my persuasion,” how is that gross? The difference between these lyrics and 2-Chainz’s lyrics are…Well, nothing. Miley fans, like 2-Chainz fans, don’t crave musical ingenuity or originality. The point of Rihanna’s ”Cockiness” is about fuckin’ dudes, cause that’s what she wants to do, and we love that.
In Miley’s most recent music video, “Adore You”, she creates a sex-tape setting where she sings about a boy and masturbates. This was the hugest deal in all of the land for about a week. But, why? Guys talk about masturbating all the time. Guys masturbate ALL the goddamn time. I mean literally if you’re not talking to a guy in person RIGHT NOW, he is masturbating somewhere. Somewhere, someplace, most guys everywhere are masturbating right now. In Wolf of Wall Street, Jonah Hill masturbates at a party. At a party! That masturbation scene only got one joke at the Golden Globes, then the whole scandal, or lack there of, was kicked to the curb like the Kardashians’ morals.
I think Miley is very smart, much smarter than most of us choose to see. I dare you to go ask any millennial girl what her opinion is on Miley Cyrus. Unless she’s homeschooled, a product of conservative parents, or extremely timid, she’ll say: “Miley’s a boss.” …Because it’s true! Miley has girls her age fawning over her, following her like she’s Jesus Christ’s hot cousin. Miley is Noah, millennial girls are her animals, and the Bangerz Tour is her arc. She’s standing up and making a statement for twenty-something girls with libidos. She fucking wreaks of sex, drugs, rock ‘n roll and is dripping with couture. She’s a modern day rockstar, and it’s because she’s empowering the girls she surrounds herself with. And it doesn’t stop with these kids: for God’s sake, I saw Diane Keaton at her concert!
(Photo courtesy of Getty Images; Jeff Kravitz )
Miley knows her audience and she knows what we want. We want edge, we want DGAF, we want girls with grillz and guns and Blair from Gossip Girl shooting lasers out of her eyes. We want Orange Is The New Black thrashing against Rihanna’s pot garden to the sound of fucking chainsaws and Hilary Clinton’s ass on fire. That’s why Miley’s “23” collaboration with what seemed like a completely random array of rappers was such a hit. Because it WASN’T random rappers; it was all of our FAVORITE rappers, saying the same dumb shit, with our favorite white bitch singing bossy business over it. Strategy, guys. I mean, Jesus, her AMA performance of “Wrecking Ball” was like Buzzfeed sharted all over the stage in a kitty weed galaxy smackdown. Miley is like American Horror Story: Coven, The Hip-Hop Musical. GOD, I love her.
That’s why Bangerz is a total abomination on Sir David Jason’s ideals: It’s about not giving a fuck. Miley gives absolutely zero fucks. That’s why “Love, Money, Party” makes me want to hit up a strip club like a terrifying middle-aged man. It’s about the beat, the feeling engorged in the songs, and the ability to dance your face out of your butt and scream “Wrecking Ball” in your car like you’re Adele and you’re naked as fuck. Miley has street cred’ ya’ll, and it’s not just with her rapper friends, it’s with the girls of America.
So, men, stop being so selfish. Don’t slut-shame Miley and don’t slut-shame us. Miley is teaching all of you a lesson, one you aren’t even aware that you’re learning. Most men, (and most women too,) don’t make the conscious effort to actually THINK about this in their daily lives. This is the problem with equality: real equality is about the way you treat people, and you’re never going to treat people differently if you don’t make an effort to perceive them differently. If you don’t believe women and men are 100% wholly equal, what is physic-fucking-ly wrong with you?
(Photo courtesy of Vevo: “23” Music Video by Mike Will Made It)
Miley Cyrus is a feminist. She is liberating our libidos. She is bossy and outspoken. If Miley continues to use her sexuality as a dominant feature with men rather than a submissive feature, and portrays this in her lyrics like Rihanna does, she will blaze a trail as an icon in feminism and equality. Step your intelligence up, America. Women like Lena Dunham, Lorde, Missy Elliot, Taylor Schilling, Laura Prepon, Mary Louise-Parker and Miley are doing the biggest, most important service for young girls; they’re giving us heroes.
My boss said something to me about Miley Cyrus that really resonated: “How can one person, ONE PERSON… cause this sort of mass hysteria?” Take a gander at the look on every girl’s face after she walks out of the Bangerz tour: That should answer it.
UPDATE: Thought Catalog has published this article. Please share their link instead: http://thoughtcatalog.com/jillian-emma/2014/03/why-miley-cyrus-is-actually-a-feminist/
In honor of the cult show coming to a series close, Jill shows you how to watch Breaking Bad the PROPER way.
Special thanks to Ritch Ruiz, Paul McLalin, and Babe Caruso.
Music: Pop That Radio
MODERN IMPRESSIONS: Jill does an impression of a girl who only shops at Trader Joe’s. Thanks to the hilarious @ritchisabitch for letting me hit his face with a peach!