Teen Tramp Trend Is Media Myth

Girls lust after saucy look, but not so hot for sex
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 14, 2008 4:59 AM CDT
Miley Cyrus, star of The Disney Channel's series "Hannah Montana."   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – High-profile pregnant teens like Bristol Palin and Jamie-Lynn Spears paint a picture of teenage girls run amok with lust, writes Belinda Luscombe in Time. But while “girls seem to have moved from Easy-Bake to easy virtue” in the last generation, Luscombe argues that the teens are often more interested in trying on the sexy rather than in having the sex implied in the pop culture images that bombard them.

But the media’s sexualization of young girls does have its dangers, Luscombe cautions. Studies show that kids who consume lots of sex-heavy media are more than twice as likely than their peers to have sex by age 16. And the sexing up of tweens poses troublesome questions about the adults driving the media trend, with child-pornography arrests “skyrocketing” in the past decade, Luscombe notes.