Cyrus, whose recent music video for "Who Owns My Heart" depicts the pop idol maturing into a sex symbol, is proving she is a "performer and a businessperson -- not the protector of childhood innocence" -- and parents who admonish the 17-year-old for her efforts to break out of her squeaky-clean Disney persona need to get a grip, The Washington Post said Saturday.
"While we understand the desire for a teenaged performer like Miley Cyrus to break free of the typecast roles that made her a star, it is unfortunate that she would participate in such a sexualized video like this one. It sends messages to her fan base that are diametrically opposed to everything she has done up to this point," Parents Television Council President Tim Winter lamented recently. But the Post noted Cyrus' new moves are nothing compared with the weekly "grinding rumbas" that greet American audiences on ABC's "Dancing With The Stars" -- many of whom are also teens.
Nothing can stop Cyrus from "barreling toward adulthood," and she must work to "cultivate an older fan base" to avoid becoming a "creepily stunted child star," the Post said, noting that no one cried foul when Mickey Mouse Club fixture Justin Timberlake grew up to "Bring Sexy Back."
Cyrus is not alone in dealing with the double standard, as Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears also ran into the impossible "don't grow up" demand as their careers matured, the Post noted.