Can Britney Really Cause a Sex Riot?

If you watched last night’s episode of Glee, then you know the music of Ms. Britney Spears was featured. One of the many story lines included cheerleading coach Sue Sylvester warning Mr. Schuester of the dangers of singing Britney songs. She advised him that exposing the students to her music could lead down a slippery slope of debauchery, deviancy, and ultimately a sex riot. And in fact, a semi-sex riot did ensue when the kids sang “Toxic” at the homecoming assembly. So my question for today is: can Britney (or pop music in general) really bring about the kinds of misbehavior of which Sue is warning us?

Not that this is a new question, parents have been accusing popular culture of sullying their kids for generations. But does it really happen? Is there a direct line, as Sue would have us believe, between risqué music and bad behavior?

I’m inclined to say no. I don’t believe that listening to a suggestive – or even explicit – song can cause kids to engage in sexually riotous behavior. And to say that it does minimizes the other, more constant, influences in their lives. Parents, teachers, friends, neighbors, classmates – all these factors have much more influence than one sexy song ever could – even if the singer is Britney.

So, if you’re a parent, don’t underestimate the influence you have with your children – even if it seems like they never listen to a word you say. And be

4 thoughts on “Can Britney Really Cause a Sex Riot?

  1. Angel says:

    I cringed at a few of the dance numbers, wondering what parents would be thinking. But then, of course, Glee has always been a “watch with caution” kind of show.

    Reminds of another post you wrote: http://www.yourmindyourbody.org/raising-healthy-kids-in-a-sexualized-media-world/

    As for my overall opinion of the episode: It was fun. I loved how much screen time was given to Brittany S. Pierce. And Sue was sharp tongued as usual. But I wish the writers would go back to using the songs to complement or advance the storyline. And not write episodes that revolve around the music.

    • drstephaniesmith says:

      Yes, some of the dances were pretty sexy – but I agree with your “watch with caution” comment. Parental supervision is almost always a good thing. And I hadn’t thought about their use of songs changing – but you are so right! It is fun to try to guess which song they will pick to convey an emotion or situation. Maybe they will get back to it next week. Or maybe they will do Mr. Shu’s easy listening lesson after all?

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