One day I was looking for a book in my little sisters room. Once I was inside I was bombarded by a sea of chemically enhanced smiles. Jonas Brothers, Miley Cyrus, Demi Lavato, to name a few. 'Okay,' I think, 'my sis is into Disney, can't say I'm not disappointed, but you know, to each his own. Sometime later I get a call from a friend saying that Miley Cyrus appeared in some scandalous pictures, obviously following the racy footsteps of other Disney prodigy, Vanessa Ann Hudgens. My sister is 9 years old. Imagine if she was exposed to such vulgarity at such a young age by way of someone who is supposed to be a model. I do not believe that popular culture is a good role model for today's teens simply based on the fact that these celebrities do not seem to realize how much power they hold over people and act out of term. Take the aforementioned Miley Cyrus. From lewd picture to racial mockery to dating a boy who is legally an adult while she herself was only 16. The worst part? She was not penalized for these actions; this shows her fans that committing such affairs are socially acceptable. She is not the only perpetrator either. Chris Brown show young boy that abuse, which already has a 30-50% rate among teens, is right, seeing as Rhianna is still saying that she loves him. She too shows an example of herself also, showing that girls that it is fine to let their boyfriends beat them. Twilight stars, Robert Pattinson and Kirsten Stewart have been repeatedly photographed drinking heavily and smoking what appears to be tobacco. Approximately 80% of adult smokers admit that they started smoking before the age of 18. Each year, students spend $5.5 billion on alcohol, more than they spend on soft drinks, tea, milk, juice, coffee or books combined. There is a case in which Kirsten Stewart is seen smoking a pipe; the contents may have been marijuana, an illegal substance. 56% of teens aged 12-17 say that marijuana is easy to obtain and 13.1 percent of youth aged 12-17 say they have been approached by a drug dealer at least once. Under the influence of these stars who is to say that the next time they won't buy? And speaking of Twilight, in the series there are not so subtle hints of Stephanie Meyers Religion, Mormonism. Now I am all for freedom of religion, and choosing what to believe, but I don't think that a teen should choose their belief based on a popular book. Another thing in Twilight, The Vampires are better than the werewolves, is it a coincidence that in the Mormon religion they believe that white skin is better than brown? That not only sways a teenager to believe in Mormonism but to be prejudice as well. To some this may be a "Great Romance" but is romance really about a person stalking, yes stalking, the other and being way over protective to the point of insanity? All I'm saying is I never saw that kind of things in Beauty and the Beast. On to another major influence. The Internet. Vanessa Ann Hudgens, as I said before, took adult pictures of herself which later leaked onto the internet, which were viewed by the thousands, maybe millions. How many of those viewers, do you suppose, were teenagers? How many teens, while looking at said pictures, did they come across an ad that advertised a product, let's say for make up and in it there is a model. Not just any model, a supermodel, the highest cheekbones, the smokiest eyes and the most flawless skin. Or maybe, the product is tennis shoes and the model was this guy, he's buff, tan, and handsome. The teen gazing upon this ad would think that they should look like that, that this is the definition of beauty. On that notion it could drive a teenage girl, who was perfectly content with herself, to bulimia or anorexia. Over 7 million American women are diagnosed with anorexia when they were in high school and 1-10% of bulimia patients say that it peaked in late adolescences. Or it might drive a teen boy, who was on the football team as a second stringer, to try anabolic steroids or other dangerous enhancement drugs. All because of one little ad. See, one little seemingly insignificant thing could impact the way a teen views things. Like clothes. Older generations look down upon ours because of the way we dress or the music we listen to. And I agree. I should not have to see the naval of every girl I pass or the boxers of every boy my age. They do this because of the messages conveyed in some of today's popular music. Take Lady Gaga, probably one of the most popular recording artists today, she sings about being promiscuous. Have you ever seen one of her music videos? She dresses, well not that conservatively. Barely anything at all really. The point is that whatever is portrayed in the media as "Cool," makes teens think it is cool. This brings me to the other side of the argument. There is some, albeit few, celebrities that show real role model behavior. The Jonas Brothers, though I am not a fan of them personally, I cannot help but respect the strong family values they show to their fans. Other Disney Star, Selena Gomez, Speaks up about Teen Driver Awareness, this is important seeing as about 8 teens die in a motor vehicle accident every day, most of which are alcohol related. Disney has also launched a campaign about going green called Friends For Change. Stars like Demi Lavato and Mitchell Musso encourage teens to sign up to help the Earth to become a greener place to live. This kind of thing makes me believe in the media today. Now imagine this, you have a daughter, she's 14 and she is totally infatuated with Robert Pattinson. She happens across the photos of him drinking alcohol. Now just the other day she was approached by one of her friends trying to get her to drink beer. The next day after she sees the picture her friend approaches her again. Her mind immediately goes to the picture of Robert. She smiles and takes a big swig. Her face contorts into a pinched look; it tastes bad. But you know what, who cares? As long as it looks cool. Soon your daughter is out very weekend looking to score some booze. Just like that she's addicted. I'm not saying that she should never read another book or movie about vampires. I'm saying that what a teenager views is all up to the parents. A teenager can't make a decision; our brains haven't been fully developed yet. Until we are 18 it is up to the parents to decide whether we want to drive safely or if we want to go binge drinking. There is basically nothing you can do about the behavior of other people, no matter how much a parent can protest. You just can't. So no, popular culture is a bad influence on teens, it's almost the worst influence on teens.