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Miley Cyrus and the stripper pole: What do you think?

August 11, 2009 |  5:02 pm

Miley Cyrus' brief flirtation with a stripper pole on Fox's Teen Choice Awards on Monday night has people buzzing today with online forums and message boards lighting up with adjectives like "inappropriate," "shocking" and "trashy." 

But was it really any of those things? As Culture Monster recently reported, pole dancing is fast losing its risque stigma, thanks in part to gyms and fitness centers that use the pole for workouts. In the dance world, the stripper pole has become the focus of a new competitive sport that has followers all over the world. Even family-friendly Cirque du Soleil has hired a pole dancer for its "Zumanity" production.

Cyrus, 16, is reported to have said her on-air pole dance was intended as an homage to her small-town, trailer-park roots. However you want to parse that statement, the teen star's actions have clearly succeeded in sending mixed messages. That the stripper pole was planted on top of an old-fashioned ice cream cart -- a symbol of childhood innocence and wholesomeness -- only heightens the cognitive dissonance. 

So what did you think about Cyrus' little dance Monday night? Take a minute to vote.

-- David Ng

Comments () | Archives (128)

It's obvious why she got on the cart--the girl can't dance! Other people had to move her across the stage, otherwise all she would have done is stood there and flapped her legs a little.

This is dancing?

The pole by itself is one thing -- the (underage?) girls dancing around in bras is another. Taken together in context, this act is completely inappropriate. Teenage girls are sexualized enough.

These are children, not adults. There is a difference. This is why there are so many maladjusted teens now, who dont respect their elders, that think they ARE adults, when they are not equpt mentally, emotinally, or physically to deal with adult life. It is our job to protect them, whiich doesnt mean hide them from life, but teach them and point out what is wrong, and speak up against it.

We should also go after hoes like Beyonce when she does her little stripper dance and is out to sell her body to the highest bidder in Put A Ring On It. That is whoredom at its commercialized and marketed most disgusting and obvious, yet so common now.. Putting a little Janet Jackson laugh on at the end of a Cat House dance does not make it alright, its twisted, and twists impressionable young minds and emotions. They cant handle it, and we adults should be disgusted, instead of titilalted and accepting.

We adults need to speak out for our children, they lose their minds as they become teenagers, we have to get them through the period of adjustment to adulthoods, this is NOT the way, it is alla bout getting your money through enticments, those who make these things do not have kids, or neglect them, How many decent parents are there making these monstrosities? None. They dont know, and dont care. Its all about them, their desires and greed, not whats good for our kids. A teenager cannot handle what a college kid can, and they are nuts enough, school is to keep them focused and structured til they can get their jumbled emotions in line, and balanced, Kids lack this. It is our job as parents to do it for them, our responsibility, A word completely lacking in Hollywood these days, and all the "arts".

Art Collegia Delenda Est

Some of you guys are saying that you see some kids younger than Miley dressing and doing worse than she is. Correct me if I'm wrong but that in no way, shape, form or fashion justifies her performing in a way that can be construed as inappropriate.

Think about it for a second. If we compare what she is doing to other people who have worst judgment then we are doing away with good or bad. It basically means you're only good or bad based on the behavior of the person next to you. So if that person killed 20 innocent people and you killed 10 murders then you are automatically a good person. Foolishness!

I wasn't aware that individual responsibility and personal morals, values and standards were relative. I hope that the people here who said that they have seen kids younger than Miley doing worse aren't a reflection of the majority otherwise it would be very very sad. And if they are a reflection then it would explain in great detail why society is struggling as it is right now.

You should be ashamed. Ridiculous!

so let me understand this everybody is getting upset because miley decided 2 stand on a ice cream cart. all you people have no lives ...really wat is wrong with you? who cares if she does a pole dance or wears short shorts. regardless if miley cyrus is around or not half of your kids are gonna get pregnant any way, they're gonna talk back to you, they're going to do drugs, and they're going to have sex and theres not a thing you or miley cyrus can do about it. ya'll just wanna blame somebody because you don't know how to raise your kids. if your kids are younger than 13 they shouldn't be watching teen choice awards anyway.plus who said just because your on disney channel you have to be a saint. there's a whole lot of people that were on disney channel that no longer have careers. and miley is not trying to be one of them. honestly if she stopped doing the things you crazy people think is wrong would you really continue watching her show or listening to her music.

as i was watching the teen choice awards i noticed only a few people out of the entire show thanked GOD...and miley cyrus was one of those few. yall say its just 4 publicity but you don't say anything when the jonas brothers go around claiming they're virgins and wearing their purity rings....not to mention have the teenagers of world are not virgins. and because she's famous you are upset cause you don't believe she's innocent cause of the way she does stuff or the way she dresses.... Destiny Child use to dress the same way...they actually still dress that way but ohhhhh they're angels right?...please

it's not fair that you want her to basically give up being a teenager just to please you guys...if she wants to dress like that let her...heck i dress like that, yet everyday people tell me how kute i look in my outfit but because she's famous you degrade her and her talent....miley is one of very few teenagers who can sing the whole time and actually sing not just lip sing and be there just to be a pretty face. her parents realize that she is growing up..thats why they let her do shows and what not... if they hold her back that's when teenagers really start to act out.and i know you parents know that yet you still do it..thats why when your kids go to college they come back totally different because they decided to experience the world cause you wouldn't let them as teenagers.you have to realize teenagers are almost adults they're only a few years away from being 18.

next time you see miley cyrus and you have something bad to say think about what the rest of the world is doing because your child is more likely to find a role model in someone off the streets then someone on T.V because people on T.V aren't real, its just for show.people in real life aren't putting on a show they really do bad things and dress in very inappropriate ways. think about that!

Just because some behavior is more acceptable or common now doesn't mean it's beneficial or healthy or positive. It just means more people are doing it. Why do you think Britney Spears was/is so messed up? Because her parents allowed her to become a sexual commodity at what, 15? If you think that doesn't mess with a kid's head then you're as lost as they are.
It's heartbreaking how many weak parents there are out there - and not just in Hollywood. They're raising kids without any sense of inner strength or self respect.

On to the actual performance; I don't know about you but I've never seen an ice cream cart with ANY kind of pole on top of it.
This was totally calculated and anyone who thinks otherwise is just plain clueless. She's 17 and probably wants to wh*re it up like most of Young Hollywood. And I bet it was her idea. Love to know if putting the pole on the ice cream cart was her idea, too. Or maybe it was her folks'? ("Well....okay....you can do the pole but put it on an ice cream cart or something so it won't look like, you know, a stripper pole.")

I agree that the shorts were super short and not very appropriate, but the whole pole thing is being blown way out of proportion. She goes up and down the pole once and there was nothing provocative about it. She didn't do any provocative moves. She barely even danced. I'm sure that pole was up there more for safety and she had to play it off.


That was disturbing. I cannot believe her parents let her do that. I agree people need to stop making excuses for he. She is dead wrong. She has made too many inappropriate mistakes and obviously has not learned her lesson. Disney needs to drop her. BTW, stop saying she is a normal teenager. I am a normal teenager and I have the sense to not do a stripper dance on national tv, especially if you are looked up to by tons of little girls. I refuse to support that slut.

Wow, Miley Cyrus has reached a new low. She knows EXACTLY what she's doing. I wish people woud stop saying "shes only 16," because at 16, you should be able to take full responsibility for your actions. When my 17 year old nieces heard about this, they just rolled their eyes and said, "What ELSE would you expect from her?"

holding on to the pole for balance!? oh come on...you people are either extremely naive or just plain stupid. at the end of the day we all know this girl was surrounded by people with dollar signs in their eyes as they dressed her in booty shorts paired with a skimpy top that barely covered her bra and shoved her on a pole. they knew exactly what they were doing...it was all planned out right down to the buzz it generated.

I think she's on the slippery slope (or pole) to following in Lindsey Lohan's footsteps

Yes, we've all seen things much worse than this. But does that mean we want to see more of it? I'm really tired of all-sex-all-the-time attitudes. Where is the genuine talent?

MUCH ado about nothing. Without the pole for support, she falls off the cart.

The performance was tame for an adult audience, but that was not the audience watching. I have two girls, 10 and 13. The 13 year old is getting over the Hannah Montana phase and is not too much of a fan anymore. However, my 10 year old loves her. After, all these public "mistakes", I am not sure I feel confortable having her be such a big fan. If Cyrus wants to attract a more mature audience she should give up the Hannah Montana character all together.

Who are the people who choose her wardrobe and choreography? She is a minor. Doesn't anyone care anymore what images little girls and boys are recieving from the TV?

Seems like she could go the route that Britney Spears went. Too much exposure too young.

all of you ppl need to stop making a big deal out of nothing! she was not dancing on a stripper pole it was an ice cream pole for crying out loud! and mileys parents shouldnt be ashamed of miley because look how far she made it she works hard to get where she is today. leave her alone. in stead of bagging on miley for making one tiny mistake on o freakin ice cream pole why dont you go write blogs about other celebrities that have taken nude pics like vanessa hudgens for example!!!!!!!!! celebrities need private lives to and not ppl finding some lame excuse to try and make them sound like their some skank on a pole so leave miley alone and give her a break. everybody makes mistakes. i <3 u miley!!!!!!!

"Stripper pole"? C'mon! It was a pole on top of an ice-cream cart...that they were MOVING across the stage. Do you really begrudge her a handle? As for the "stripper move"...please. She does the same move with her mic stand in every show you'll ever see her do. Even in the 3-d movie, for cripes sake (as "Disney-fied a concert as you'll ever see).
I found her dress to be completely appropriate. She had on shorts. They were NOT short-shorts. They were not "Daisy Dukes". When she turned around, there was none of her "anatomy" sticking out. The girl has long legs. Was there a lot of skin showing? Sure....so what. I didn't realize our children should all be clothed, head to toe, with not one inch of skin being exposed. Please....
Leave the poor girl alone. She didn't do anything "wrong" and this "story" is getting completely overblown. I watched the show with my 7 year old daughter and didn't feel the least bit "weird", or that anything inappropriate had gone one.

I wouldn't mind such a tiny bit of suggestive dancing from someone slightly older. But while she's still under eighteen and (especially) still tied to the Disney channel, she should keep it PG and try to make a more smooth transition into a more grown-up image when she's old enough to deserve it. And the short-shorts don't help. Probably wouldn't have looked quite as suggestive if she were wearing jeans.

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