Until yesterday I was blisfully unaware of Miley Cyrus and ‘twerking’ was not in my vocabulary at all.
But after Debbie Hemmens, one of our volunteer reporters sent me an email mentioning she was thinking of writing a comment on ‘the Miley Cyrus news from last night’ I sheepishly googled ‘Miley Cyrus’. I quickly learned that the former Disney Channel child actress and now 20-year-old pop star raised eyebrows at the MTV Music Video Awards on Sunday when she twerked (shook her hips provactively) while wearing a scanty outfit.
This experience confirmed my conviction that I need to recruit more young writers to report and comment on issues that are impacting teens and young adults today. And I am happy to say that we have just gained some exciting young writers who will be doing just that. Watch this space!
Letter to Miley Cyrus
But let me get to the really interesting part of this article. While I was scanning my google search results I stumbled on a beautifully written blog post that really moved me. Entitled ‘A Letter to Miley Cyrus‘ it challenges the young pop star to consider the destructive influence of her glamourisation of casual sex and drugs on ordinary young people who do not enjoy the protective cushion of celebrity status. The letter is especially compelling because of the unmistakable love for Miley and respect for her talent that it conveys.
The writer, who identifies herself on her blog as “Rihanna” says to Miley “you will probably never read this because I think the most hits my blog has had in a day is 400 (and yes I felt cool)”.
Well, at the time of writing this article, Rihanna’s blog post has been read by 2,1 million people and has had more than 2 000 comments.
With the help of twitter I contacted Rihanna today and found out more about her and her amazing blogging experience. Her name is Rihanna Teixeira and she lives in Arizona USA but is about to move to Redding, California to begin her second year in the Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry which exists to raise up revivalists who will boldy live out the Great Commission in their everyday lives. Interestingly my daughter, Helen and her husband Chris Frost, recently moved to Redding, were Helen is now working in the Bethel Media Department. And next month another second year student at Bethel, Shannon-Leigh Barry, from Port Elizabeth, will start writing a monthly column for us!
But back to Rihanna, who in response to my questions tells me that she has always had a passion for music and writing.
She continues: “I have had a blog for a few years for no purpose other than just having an outlet to practice creative writing. I actually wrote the letter to Miley at work to give myself something to do while in between phone calls.
Saddened by the message to young people
“I love Miley Cyrus and think she is extremely talented, but I am saddened by the message that is being sent out to a generation of young people who look up to her. All the examples I used in the blog (the heroin drug addict, the stripper, college dropout) were all real examples of the situations my friends have found themselves in due to partying and drug abuse. ‘We Can’t Stop’ sends the message that drugs and alcohol are glamorous and promising when in fact it is just the opposite. I do realize that not every person who has tried drugs and alcohol ends up in those extreme, saddening situations, but I can promise you that they don’t end up rich and famous because of it either. My heart is for her to understand that what she does has power. She has a voice in this generation and whether people want to admit it or not, children and young adults look up to her.”
Regarding her blog post going viral, Rihanna says: “I am in shock with how much attention my blog has attracted! It all started with a radio DJ [Johnjay VanEs from Johnjay and Rich] who follows me on twitter. He immediately saw my blog and retweeted it to his 200K followers and then from there it just kind of took off. I told my friend that my goal was to hit 1000 hits! I definitely hit that goal!”
Well done Rihanna. May your letter now reach Miley and speak to her heart!