While accepting the award for Best Hip-Hop Video at tonight’s MTV Video Music Awards, Nicki Minaj held host Miley Cyrus accountable for comments she made in an interview with The New York Times on Thursday. Cyrus was asked about Minaj’s Twitter spat with Taylor Swift in July over this year’s crop of nominees. “What I read sounded very Nicki Minaj, which, if you know Nicki Minaj is not too kind,” said Cyrus. “It’s not very polite. I think there’s a way you speak to people with openness and love. You don’t have to start this pop star against pop star war… I know you can make it seem like, Oh I just don’t understand because I’m a white pop star. I know the statistics. I know what’s going on in the world. But to be honest, I don’t think MTV did that on purpose.”
When challenged, Cyrus blamed standard media misinterpretation for the quote before noting that she’d lost VMAs without complaining in the past. The whole exchange could’ve been choreographed — Minaj did bring Swift on stage with her a few minutes earlier, after all — but there was a definite, palpable spark there, and it’s good that Cyrus was forced to defend a quote that wasn’t particularly insightful or accurate in its description of Minaj’s behavior.