Many Christians I know, who live in the world of the intellect and academic interests as I generally do, pay little or no attention to popular culture unless they are forced to do so. I mean who really cares about Madonna or Mariah Carey, who both made the newspapers today. Well, apparently lots of people do thus we call this "pop" culture and it is big in our society. And who honestly cared about the $48.6 settlement of Paul McCartney and Heather Mills in their divorce settlement yesterday in a British court? Apparently, once again, a lot of people did. The media may create some of this pop culture but generally they respond to what people are interested in as well.
Christians who are interested in "high culture" (so-called) tend to laugh at all this. I did that for about a decade. I still have very little interest in much of it but I no longer laugh since I want to communicate with people who live in the world of pop culture. This seems to be the majority of Americans if you’ve noticed at all. With iPods, downloads, television and satellite radio you get this pop culture 24/7 now. We just swim in it whether we like it or not.
This brings me to one Miley Cyrus; a.k.a. Hannah Montana.
I confess I would know nothing of this fifteen year old girl unless I had a wife and two granddaughters who adore her. When the girls (10 and 6) are over to visit then I hear Hannah’s songs and even start singing them to myself once in awhile. It is catchy and fun stuff. ("You get the best of both worlds . . . .") Hey, I have even watched one or two of her Disney Channel shows. She even has a movie out right now but I haven’t seen that one yet. At the moment I do not think I will pay to see it since my taste in films is rather different. (By the way the good films that are out right now are slim pickings, to say the least. We went from a feast, from September to December, to a fast from January to March!)
All of this Hannah Montana stuff got me interested in the real girl behind the Hannah character in the on-going Disney Channel series. In the television program Hannah is a blond star who sings in public while she remains the more shy and unknown Miley Cyrus at home and in school. Few of her friends, with a seemingly intentional play on the old Superman/Clark Kent theme, know that these two people are the same single person. The story is cute, wholesome and a lot of fun.
But who is the young lady? In a world of Paris Hilton and Mariah Carey this is a lovely young girl with her head put on right. She is the daughter of country music star Billy Ray Cyrus.The family seems to have solid values and real character. The real name of Cyrus is Destiny Hope Cyrus. (I do not know but I wonder if there is a Christian influence in this family.)
In a L. A. Superior Court yesterday papers were filed to legally change Cyrus’ name to Miley Ray Cyrus. Hope Destiny is a beautiful birth name but I can understand why the family agreed on the legal change.
I pray the Cyrus family will all keep their feet anchored on planet earth and their values in tact. It is refreshing to see a pop culture star for young girls who is, well to use an old word, "quite wholesome."