No-Sign: Miley Cyrus, Leave Hip Hop Alone

No-Sign: Miley, Leave Hip Hop Alone

No-Sign is a regular feature that gives an in depth opinion on whatever deserves a proper verbal thrashing.  Basically, instead of earning a highly esteemed Co-Sign, it’s about to catch fade on a No-Sign.  In this edition, Miley Cyrus needs to put the mic down and quit all that jiggle-less twerkin’.

How easy of a punching bag Miss Miley Cyrus has been on the interwebz these days?  Whether the venom and vitriol being spewed at Miley have been from soccer moms drunk off the Haterade due to her post-Hannah Montana antics, or from respected pundits who have nit-picked in detail how her actions as of late, specifically the twerking and perceived exploitation of race in her “We Can’t Stop” music video, are cultural appropriation at its worst, she certainly has been a deliciously juicy target for the controversy bug as of late.  If you ask me, plenty of it is warranted, mainly the whole cultural misappropriation part.

But hol’ up.  Let’s run it back one time.

Did I just really mention “Haterade” in 2013?

My bad.  It’ll never happen again.  I mean, such jargon is as passe as describing something dysfunctional and sub-par as “ghetto”.

And you know what?  Miley Cyrus is the walking fiesta of using a similar misunderstanding to assimilate herself into a certain culture and validate her “street cred”.   For some reason, she thinks that twerking and Molly-popping her way into hip hop were the best ideas to get her in with the culture.  In some ways, much to mine and I’m sure many a hip hop purist’s chagrin, she’s been effective with such a strategy.  Hard to believe right?  Well readers, I present to you Exhibit A: Miley’s lately been featured on a track with rappers Juicy J and Wiz Khalifa.

Enter Mike WiLL Made It’s “23” song and music video.

No-Sign: Miley Cyrus, Stay Away From Hip Hop
I’ll spare everybody the headache by not posting the video and instead offer a Cliff’s Notes version:

The premise of Miley Cyrus portraying the stereotype of being “hood”, “urban”, or even “ratchet” is so blatant to the point of borderline mockery and being a caricature of its perception.  But get this, some of hip hop’s chart toppers like Juicy J, Wiz Khalifa, and Mike WiLL Made it, wholeheartedly accept it and give her a pass to do so!  But wait, it gets worse!  She actually makes an attempt to drop bars! Check the brilliance:

Put on my J’s and dance the whole night away,
I’m naughty by nature like I’m hip hop hooray.
With my hands in the sky, I wave ’em from side to side,
My feet on the floor, I’m ’bout to turn up now.

Stop it.  Treach, Vinny, and Kay Gee deserve more respect than that steaming heap of panda poop you dropped on the mic, Miley.  Sorry pandas.  Apologies also to the bamboo in said panda droppings.  Unfortunately, I watched the whole video and I have no clue why.  It was like being mesmerized by the car accident that caused the traffic jam. That hot basura was as annoyingly painful as scratching the back of your head and accidentally popping a pimple.

No-Sign: Miley Cyrus, Leave Hip Hop Alone

Look, I’m all for artistic expression and manipulating certain aspects of media and entertainment to get to where you want.  And from what she’s recently said, that is precisely what she’s been doing.  Get your paper.  Matter fact, “Wrecking Ball” is a decent pop song that showcases Miley’s talents a whole lot better! But the problem is when this former Disney starlet who wants to be “down” with hip hop and refers to anything associated with its perception as being, feeling, or sounding black (click the link, I wish I could make it up), then that’s when I need to get on my own soapbox and voice how much I loathe such a notion.

Miley Cyrus, hip hop and urban culture are more than just twerking, acting ratchet, sporting grillz, and rockin’ J’s; no matter how much you and however many in society seem to perceive it to be.  Don’t dilute the recipe to your own taste and call yourself a chef.  Moreover, hip hop is not some a la carte menu where you can pick and choose which components of it seem “black” enough for you to appropriate, without having to immerse yourself too deeply into it.  No, it is none of that and never will be as far as I’m concerned.  The bastardization of hip hop has been an on-going epidemic for years now, I get that.  But I’m afraid that with Miley’s social reach and  accessibility to a majority of America’s households, her wildly inaccurate portrayal of what hip hop is meant to be further gives ammo to the crazies that decry the culture already, while also inevitably giving rise to a new crop of hip hop fans who take her word as gospel and her actions as miracles.

And besides, her verse sounded like it was ghostwritten by a committee of Chief Keef, Gucci Mane, and a banana.



Richard "Reach" Guinto

Reach loves the Lakers, breakfast, the sound of a Fender Rhodes, and rapping along word for word to Wu Tang's "Triumph." If you're looking for him, he's probably out getting chicken.

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