It is undeniable that popular musicians affect the youth of our culture. Musicians in our culture are put on a pedestal, with nearly every aspect of their life in the spotlight. We don’t just see them performing, we see them leaving their houses, we see them getting arrested, we even know when they are feeling under the weather. So how do you think this “sex sells” trend is affecting our youth? As aforementioned, children and teenagers look up to these artists. When they see their role model up on stage in underwear or see-through dresses, what do you think they want to do?
Children are very malleable, they can mold easily to their surroundings. So when they are constantly surrounded by promiscuity and nudity, they are going to be inspired to behave similarly. Children are growing up faster now than ever because of the world they live in. When I was growing up, I played with Barbie dolls and footballs and listened to Leann Rimes. I had a great and very innocent childhood. Things are so different now. Children are playing with iPads and watching YouTube videos of these musicians wearing little to literally nothing. When I was growing up, “tweens” referred to children aged 10-12. Nowadays, children are seen as a massive and very valuable consumer market. “Tweens” now refers to kids as young as 6 years old. Our culture is encouraging youth to grow up quicker than ever, and the results of this can be seen through the young artists of today that are very mature for their age and aren’t afraid to show it. As a culture, we are teaching young girls to take it all off for attention, and teaching young boys to expect this from girls. Sounds like a dangerous combination if you ask me.
So where do we go from here? How do we un-do what we’ve done to the minds of our youth? Artists like Miley Cyrus and Britney Spears have gained such a following from their promiscuous behavior that I don’t see those artists going anywhere, but maybe we don’t need them to. I believe it would be extremely beneficial to focus our efforts on supporting artists that can be positive role models for our youth. Artists like Adele, Sara Bareilles, Jennifer Hudson, and Alicia Keys. Why aren’t these musicians performing on awards shows so we can talk about them for weeks rather than Miley’s foam finger? Why is Miley worth $150 million and Sara Bareilles worth $12 million? You’d be lying if you said you didn’t think it had anything to do with attention given because of nudity and performances booked because of this attention. Who says we can’t get back to the classy days of The Supremes? We all need to work together to make sure that more positive role models have their voices heard, otherwise, our kids will never be kids. After all, who would you rather have yours look up to?