Cyrus says Minaj is 'not polite'

LOS ANGELES • Miley Cyrus, who will host MTV's Video Music Awards tomorrow, has reacted to the Nicki Minaj controversy by saying the rapper is "not very polite".

Minaj, who was upset last month when Anaconda was not nominated for Video Of The Year, set off a Twitter debate about racism in the music industry that drew thousands of people - including Taylor Swift.

In a conversation with The New York Times, Cyrus said she did not follow the controversy because of Minaj's anger.

"You know what I always say? Not that this is jealousy, but jealousy does the opposite of what you want it to - that's a yoga mantra. If you do things with an open heart and you come at things with love, you would be heard and I would respect your statement. But I don't respect your statement because of the anger that came with it," Cyrus said.

"And it's not anger like, 'Guys, I'm frustrated about some things that are a bigger issue.' You made it about you. Not to sound like a b****, but that's like, 'Eh, I didn't get my VMA.'"

Cyrus, who is as white and slim as Minaj is not, won Video Of The Year for Wrecking Ball last year.

"If you want to make it about race, there's a way you could do that," she said of Minaj. "What I read sounded very Nicki Minaj, which, if you know Nicki Minaj is not too kind. It's not very polite.

"I know you can make it seem like, Oh I just don't understand because I'm a white pop star... I know what's going on in the world. But to be honest, I don't think MTV did that on purpose."

The last time Cyrus took the stage at the video awards two years ago, she performed, tongue unleashed, with giant teddy bears, a phallic foam finger and Robin Thicke - prompting a thousand think pieces about slut-shaming, racial appropriation for her use of black female dancers and the meaning of twerking.

She said she got the heat for the performance and Thicke "acted like he didn't know that was going to happen".

"You were in rehearsals! You knew exactly what was going to happen. And he was actually the one who approved my outfit, so I thought that was very funny. He wanted me as naked as possible because that's how his video was."


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 29, 2015, with the headline 'Cyrus says Minaj is 'not polite''. Print Edition | Subscribe