In this day and age it seems that everyone is fighting to achieve some form of individuality. Every person wants to be unique and different from everyone else. While some people find themselves creatively, others have found a raunchier outlet. Watching the Video Music Awards this year, it was clear that the big theme was sex.

All over the Internet, Miley Cyrus’ video was being played. There was no escaping it; somehow and some way you were going to watch her embrace her sexuality, and while I am a true believer of finding oneself and being comfortable with who you are, I don’t think it should be done on national television.

Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” sounds like a hip and cool song. It has a good beat and other artists are featured on it. It wasn’t until Miley Cyrus was twerking on Mr. Thicke that the lyrics finally set in. While people were outraged at Miley for her not-so-subtle song and dance, they completely brushed over the fact that she was dancing to a song about the blurred lines of sexual consent. The world can’t stand to see someone like Miley grow up and try and detach herself from her former child star ways, so they attack her and many girls just like her.

Sadly, while the world is shaming all those girls, it forgets to address the other side of the issue, like the lyrics of this song. People raised their eyebrows when the song was first released, but its catchy, Marvin Gaye-like beat caused them to turn the other cheek and accept the song.

It’s a double standard that has been seen in our society for a long time. If a man wants to show a more sexual side, our culture doesn’t have too much criticism. But the moment a woman makes a big statement sexually, people are shaming her left and right. Women are constantly pushed to be sexier and skimpier, but when they follow the instructions set out for them by entertainment media, television and society itself, people become outraged. I’m not saying that any of the acts that Miley did were acceptable or excusable, but if our society is going to hold one gender liable for its lack of respect for social norms, then the other gender should be held to the same standard.

Women are constantly the ones to take the brunt of criticism and are usually the ones to blame when our culture thinks something is over-sexualized. As the sexologist Dr. Jill put it on Tumblr, “If you think a woman in a tan vinyl bra and underwear, grabbing her crotch and grinding up on a dance partner is raunchy, trashy, and offensive but you don’t think her dance partner is raunchy, trashy, or offensive as he sings a song about ‘blurred’ lines of consent and propagating rape culture, then you may want to reevaluate your acceptance of double standards and your belief in stereotypes about how men vs. women ‘should’ and are ‘allowed’ to behave.”

I am an advocate for being oneself and experimenting with new aspects of life, but I also think that there has to be gender equality.