THE BLOG
14/11/2013 08:02 GMT | Updated 23/01/2014 18:58 GMT

(Another) Open letter to Miley Cyrus

Dear Miley

You were on the edge of my consciousness as Hannah Montana, but you're really butting into it now with your twerking, and nakedness, and possible public joint smoking; so I feel like we should talk. (by the way, is twerking even a word?)

I'm going to mention feminism here, because it's a thing with me, and I see that you've described yourself as "one of the biggest feminists in the world". I love it when young women identify themselves in this way, but I wonder if what's going on with you at this point is less about the sisterhood and more about just growing up?

Hollywood has a long tradition of squashing down young stars to fit into "a good thing". Hence 16 year old Judy Garland wore a special corset to hide her woman's figure in the Wizard of Oz and Macauley Culkin played a Home Alone 9 year old when he was in fact on the cusp of adolescence. I imagine that in your case, playing a Disney-sweet school girl until the age of 18 might have felt a little suffocating. In the real world, it's a given that adolescence is a difficult time. It's when, all being well; we begin to separate from our family and start to figure out what our place in the world looks like as an individual. Sometimes we upset a few people along the way. It's not an easy process and it's hard enough when the only people watching you go through it are family, when it's 3.5 million viewers who all feel like they know you, I imagine it's excruciating. So, now that you are free to be you, I can see that cutting your hair and overhauling your look is an effective way to make the distinction between fact and fiction.

But can we think about this a bit more? Yes this image you've got going on now, with the twerking and the barely there clothes has blown the all-American sweetheart out of the water, but consider for a moment where you're going with this. Grinding your arse up against a man who sings "I'll give you something big enough to tear your arse in two" might have felt like a demonstration of female empowerment, but it looked like a tacit endorsement of anal rape.

Is that a message you're comfortable with?

I see that you say you are "for anybody and anything", which is great - accepting and non-judgmental, my kind of person. But please don't forget that you have a grown up responsibility to the millions of young girls/women who buy your records and follow your career. Yes, responsibility; you might find that boring, but it's true. Your position as an internationally known singer means that your influence is massive and you need to take a long hard, grown up look at want you want to do with that influence.

Because please be aware that the young women who watch you are not the same as you. They will have neither the power nor the money that you do. If they twerk (god I hate that word) up against some guy in a club, it will not be from the safety of a stage, they will not have body guards to escort them from the building, instead they will likely seem to be "up for it" by men who think that "I hate these blurred lines, I know you want it" is a valid response to No. If these girls generate column inches it will probably be about their rape, not their shock tactics.

So Miley, you might feel like you're taking risks and pushing the envelope but right now you look stuck in a belated teenage rebellion. If you really want to embrace feminism, please (and I mean this kindly) come back when you've grown up a bit.