As someone who routinely defends Miley Cyrus‘ behavior as all being part of a very well-planned PR stunt, I’m not sure what to do with this latest interview from Hunger TV. In it, she’s running through her usual spiel about being unique and daring and willing to go places that no one else will go, yadda, yadda, yadda. Same old, same old, until we get to this part — the part that will now be known as the Jewish part.
You know me and Rankin were talking about it. With magazines, with movies, it’s always weird when things are targeted for young people yet they’re driven by people that are like 40 years too old. It can’t be like this 70 year old Jewish man that doesn’t leave his desk all day, telling me what the clubs want to hear. I’m going out, I know what they want to hear.
While I’m totally down with making fun of old people who think they “get” what the kids like, I’m not as down with throwing the word Jewish in there like it’s just another adjective. And full disclosure, before we go any further, I am Jewish. So I’m probably eighteen thousand times more sensitive to comments like this because I grew up with comments like this.
Calling an old guy Jewish in this context isn’t about pointing out his religious preferences, it’s about calling out certain, unflattering characteristics. This one, no doubt, goes back to the idea that Jews run the media. Which isn’t necessarily an insult until you realize the insinuations that go along with that idea. We don’t need to dive into a full conversation on Jewish stereotypes in the media on a Monday morning, we just need to acknowledge that this wasn’t an acceptable thing for Miley Cyrus to say. Even though I don’t think she’s currently out and about smashing menorahs and protesting Chanukah, it’s a Paula-Deen-type slip that makes me think that this isn’t the first time she’s used the word “Jewish” in a negative context. (Even if she does have so many Jewish friends.)
After a long few months of being accused of appropriating black culture and using little people for shock value in her performance, I think that it’s maybe time for her to take a quick break and reflect on some of her recent choices and how they make her look. She only has so many “I’m just being Miley” moments left before people start accusing her of embracing racism, ignorance and intolerance.