And at this year’s awards show, you showed a video made by Russian Punk Feminists Pussy Riot, a video which shared their ideas and values and ended with them protesting by burning a picture of Vladimir Putin. Pussy Riot thanked several major musical inspirations: Madonna, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Bjork and Green Day. They also said they would keep fighting for “punk rock feminism.”
“But wait,” you say, “how could you say such a thing? They showed a video by Pussy Riot!”
Yes. They did. MTV attached themselves to something popular that people are talking about and used it to make themselves attempt to look still relevant as something other than “Those guys who made Jersey Shore an actual Thing That Happened.”
You know what else they’ve done that with? You know who else they did that with THAT VERY SAME NIGHT?
Chris “I beat women and refuse to control my temper but I keep winning awards so you HAVE TO FORGIVE ME” Brown. The same Chris Brown who was presented with an award that night. The same Chris Brown who in February actually posted to Twitter after winning a Grammy “HATE ALL U WANT BECUZ I GOT A GRAMMY Now!” And the same Chris Brown who, a year before, was invited to perform at the VMAs where he danced to Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit.”
FYI: Kurt Cobain was a feminist and a good friend/former boyfriend of Bikini Kill’s Kathleen Hannah.
Okay, so, big deal, right? So MTV has one massively violent misogynist douchebag on their show, that doesn’t mean they’re full of shit entirely!
Right. Well, just off the top of my head, in the past few years:
But it’s not about actual feminism or supporting a cause, is it MTV? It’s about ratings. It’s about attention. And if that means you have to commodify an actual movement like Pussy Riot just for a cheap ratings pop, by golly you’ll do it and then cut to your choice woman beater of the week.
It is sickening that in the US in this day and age, even our rebellion can be harvested, repackaged and sold back to us at ever-increasing profits for people/companies who are part of the problem. We can no longer allow this. We cannot continue to let our revolution be sold to us. We cannot cling to a counterculture being processed and refined by the same people creating the culture we want to run counter to.
And we need to take the power away from Misogyny TV.