Sunday, 6 October 2013
READ ALL ABOUT IT.
Unless you live on the dark side of the moon, or have chosen to disengage with the media, then you must be aware of the furore surrounding the promotional video for the track Wrecking Ball by Miley Cyrus.
A young woman cavorting naked to sell a song - nothing new - has managed to get a spectacular amount of people upset.
Initially Sinead O'Connor started the 'wrecking' ball rolling with an open letter, that while it lacked any sort of diplomacy, passionately stabbed a dagger into the heart of the matter.
The response was one that few of us would have expected.
Highlighting the mental health issues that Sinead has battled in the past smacked of nothing more than a race to the bottom in debating skills.
Ugly, ignorant and inappropriate sums the reply up, and ultimately the attitude displayed by Ms Cyrus could be more damaging to her career than any amount of simulated sledgehammer fellatio could be.
Meanwhile the media have had a field day.
From the red tops to the broad sheets, and across the unlimited expanse of the internet, everyone appears to have commented.
In addition, the bandwagon that was already beginning to creak under the weight of the debate, had a few more passengers to carry as Amanda Palmer, and then Annie Lennox, brought their views to the table.
Now I want to make something very clear at this point.
I personally consider that there is a great deal of worth to be had in continuing the debate.
The video in itself has most definitely opened the door to a wider debate that can be had about feminism, about misogyny, about the sexualization of young children through the medium of entertainment, and so much more, and the response from Cyrus should be addressed with opinion pieces on the attitudes towards displayed towards those with mental health issues, but I have an problem.
My problem is this.
Currently there is enough going on in the UK, and globally, that we should be concerning ourselves with, and the media is doing us all a disservice by pushing this story so hard into the public eye.
It is a distraction that we do not need.
When we consider that a little over a week ago a man set fire to himself in a job centre - after having not eaten in three days due to his benefits being stopped - then between that and the Miley Cyrus debate what story do we think should be highlighted?
What one should carry the most weight in the press?
How about some of the draconian measures that are being touted at the Conservative party conference?
If they are successful in implementing these policies then the impact will be felt across the genders, across generations, and pretty much only a minority of the already affluent will manage to buck the downward spiral trend.
Is that not a more pressing story to report on at this present time?
I must stress again that I consider the subject deserves our attention, but how much of it is the question?
Where should this story sit in the press?
Is it a leading story?
Of course salacious headlines sells in the world of the red tops, but this has managed to leap the divide and is attracting just as much attention from the broadsheets as it has from the gutter press.
It concerns me as it could be considered the thin end of the wedge.
I wouldn't bat an eye at a comment piece about the television show 'The Only Way is Essex' being included in a broad sheet, but I would if it was on page two and an article about how many under twenty years of age had died in drone attacks was on page nine.
So in closing this is not an attack on the opinions expressed by Sinead O'Connor, Amanda Palmer, or Annie Lennox, but an attack on how the media appear to cherry pick what they want to distract us with.