Being a Bieber guy
Miko Malabute | Friday, September 11, 2015
Around The Observer office, I have somehow, someway come to be known as the “Bieber guy.” For whatever reason, whenever people have had an issue with the megastar, I have been one of the few with sound mind and clarity to come to think about his situation rationally. This is misconceived as me “defending” him, even when he has not needed any defending. It’s a tough hat to wear, being a “Bieber guy,” especially after giving a quick scroll through his Instagram comments and seeing all of the actually irrational fans flooding the comment sections. However, I will reluctantly wear the hat — not because I love his entire catalogue (even though he does have quite a few great songs), not because I’m a fan of the image he’s putting out (although he does have great hair and fashion sense) or even the way he carries himself (despite the fact that it is quite literally impossible to live in the limelight that he does day in and day out), but because as a fellow human being living in the 21st century, I can only imagine what I would do in his position.
Back in 2012, Bieber was accused of reckless driving, and people pounced on the opportunity to publicly criticize and scrutinize the child superstar after his long reign on top of the pop culture world. However, it seems as if people have forgotten what it was like when they all first got their driver’s license — people were quick to act as if they never got behind the wheel alone for the first time and pretended as if they were on the set of “Fast and Furious,” only to get their first speeding ticket. Then, in 2014 Bieber was charged for vandalism in California for throwing eggs and according to video evidence, proceeded to high-five his friends. Now I’m not going to defend vandalism at all — I’m actually quite against it, and when walking around downtown Los Angeles, it irks me whenever I see the distasteful graffiti (especially when it’s the horribly rushed-looking type). But with that said, this charge of vandalism was not graffiti, it was not spray painting on sides of historical buildings. It was egging — a poor, unwise decision, but still not vandalism in the same stratosphere as spray paint graffiti. Bieber was also most recently charged with dangerous driving in 2014 and was allegedly engaged in a physical altercation. However, it was later learned that he was acting out in response to the “unwelcome presence of paparazzi.” Now, again, I am not defending his decision-making here — it’s no joking matter once it comes to human lives. But I am being absolutely serious when I urge people to imagine what it must be like to have no sense of privacy at all. You’re entire life is scrutinized and constantly in the public eye, and you can never let down your guard. That has been Bieber’s reality before he even reached puberty.
I don’t defend Bieber because I’m an irrational fan. I’m not a “Bieber guy” just for the sake of being one. I simply, rationally think about what it must be like to be like him and live his life — for the good and the bad.
The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.