By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Did the MTV Video Music Awards fail Americas children?
Placeholder Image
Last nights MTV Video Music Awards show was packed with controversy.

Here are the highlights: Wacky pop star Miley Cyrus toed the line between clothed and unclothed, Nicki Minaj thanked her pastor for helping her succeed only to cuss out Cyrus on stage a few minutes later and Kanye West spent 20 minutes criticizing award shows and laying a foundation for a 2020 presidential run (no, were not kidding).

These events inspired much discussion on social media. Google Trends data show stars like Nicki Minaj, Taylor Swift and The Weeknd were Googled continuously from 7 p.m. Sunday night to 3 a.m. Monday morning.

Social media also buzzed with celebration, confusion and craze over the VMAs memorable events. In fact, more than 2.2 million tweets centered around Kanye West during the award show, according to Deadline.

Despite the shows immense popularity, the VMAs may have missed an opportunity to spread positive messages and good values to the millions of teens in attendance and who watched from home, experts say.

The Parents Television Council wrote a blog post Monday that criticized the award show for encouraging sexualization and promoting illegal drug use.

MTV had an opportunity to use its powerful VMA platform to stir a young audience to aspire to something positive and uplifting, PTC president Tim Winter said in the post. "Instead they chose to perpetuate blatant sexualization much of it self-inflicted by the artists and to celebrate the use of illegal drugs.

Winters description of the night isnt far off. Cyrus, as the host, spent much of the night promoting marijuana use through speeches and video vignettes. Cyrus also said on multiple occasions that she was going to strip or rip off her clothes.

In the end, the network succeeded in what it wanted to do: stir up controversy without regard to its impact on an entertainment environment that is increasingly toxic for children, Winter said in the blog post.

Winter said Cyrus and MTV could have taken the award show in another direction and promoted good values, especially since the shows host has promoted positive values before.

For example, Cyrus has long been known to be an advocate for helping the homeless. In fact, after she won Video of the Year for Wrecking Ball at last years VMAs, Cyrus had Jesse Helt, a once homeless man, accept her award, Feinauer reported.

I just didnt realize my platform; I didnt realize my power, Cyrus told interviewer Ryan Seacrest after her act attracted attention last year. If Im going to be given this loud of a voice and this big of an image and this big of a platform and this huge of an opportunity to talk to young people in America right now, what am I really trying to say?

But, as Winter points out, Cyrus and MTV didnt follow a similar path at this years awards, which made the award show unsuitable for children overall.

MTV and Cyrus could both be forces for something positive, but tonights VMA partners relied on exposing millions of children to graphic, inappropriate and far-too-frequently offensive content, he said.