- Vancouver, British Columbia - It seems that there are two types of people in the world today. Those caught up in Bieber Fever, and those who hate him. I've actually never seen such hate towards an artist before, and believe me, I've heard some colourful reviews for the Insane Clown Posse. The basic question is, why do we hate Justin Bieber? It's very obvious that his demographic is young girls from ages seven to seventeen, but those outside the demographic do not just disregard his music, they seem to hate Justin Bieber as a person. I was among these people too until recently, when I asked myself, “why?” What is it about him that we hate?
I started thinking at first that it was his music. The music itself is usually incredibly cheesy. His music falls into a grey zone somewhere between hip-hop and pop, while also keeping it all PG. Sure, it's not for everyone, but listening to “A Milli” by Lil' Wayne is no better. "A Milli" is probably one of the most aggravatingly annoying songs, yet I don't hear hundreds of people hating on Lil' Wayne. Besides, Bieber can actually play the piano and the guitar pretty well, instead of using awful synthesized beats and repetitive bass loops. So maybe the music isn't it. Maybe it is the teenie-bopper lyrics. It's because he sings about horribly childish things, right? Let's compare Justin Bieber lyrics to other Hip-Hop artists:
Justin Bieber vs. 50 Cent
“You know you love me, I know you care. Just shout whenever, and I'll be there.” - "Baby" by Justin Bieber
“If a bitch don't like me, somethin's wrong with the bitch...(fuck that bitch).” - "Fuck Dat Bitch" by 50 Cent
Justin Bieber vs. Black Eyed Peas
“I will never say never, I will fight till forever. Whenever you knock me down, I will not stay on the ground.” - "Never Say Never" by Justin Bieber
"That digital spit, next level visual shit. I got that boom boom pow. How the beat bang, boom boom pow.” - "Boom Boom Pow" by Black Eyed Peas
Justin Bieber vs. Lil' Wayne
“I can fix up your broken heart. I can give you a brand new start. I can make you believe.” - "One Less Lonely Girl" by Justin Bieber
“Motherfucker, I say life ain't shit without me... I could turn a crack rock into a mountain, dare me.” - "A Milli" by Lil' Wayne
Sure, even Bieber's lyrics are not amazingly poetic or anything, but when reading through hundreds of lyrics from current top Hip-Hop artists, it makes Bieber look like Shakespeare. They are cheesy, as previously stated, and most love ballads directed at teenage girls. Besides, his lyrics aren't too dissimilar from other songs I know.
“You got the kind of lovin' that can be so smooth. Gimme your heart, make it real or else forget about it.” - "Smooth [feat. Rob Thomas]" by Santana
Remember “Smooth” by Santana? That song was number one on the Billboard Hot Hundred for twelve weeks! Everyone was loving that song, yet the lyrics? Please, come on! Reading through them is like reading through a high school student's love note. Which brings me back to Justin Bieber. I think I've established well enough that it isn't his lyrics or music that make people hate him, but it has got to be something else. It has got to be his popularity then. It was only three years ago that Justin was singing in his town's local singing competition, “Stratford Idol." After his videos were discovered on YouTube, he was flown to Los Angeles, and had songs recorded. Now, three years later, he's a household name. At the age of 16, he can sell out Madison Square Gardens, a venue historically reserved for names like; Michael Jackson, U2, The Rolling Stones, Bon Jovi, and The Beatles. While watching Bieber's “Never Say Never,” I just watched these fans. Fans weeping at the sight of him, girls crying when getting close and screaming, “I love him, I really do.” These girls would give anything to be with him. It's this kind of devotion that turns others off, isn't it? Is this the reason we have people hating Bieber as a person? Then I thought to myself, “No, I've seen this kind of fandom before. Girls pushing through security, or even police just to get a touch.”
Where you may ask? When watching a documentary on The Beatles. This is the same fan group. You have hundreds of thousands girls swarming streets, ignoring all barriers just to get to the artist.
And when they get there, they weep, and weep, because it's the happiest day of their lives. Beatles fans were usually teenage girls who were loud and obnoxious, typically screaming and crying for the slightest glimpse of their sweethearts. Yet I don't recall anyone walking around saying, “Man, I really hate that Paul McCartney guy.”
So what is it? What drives us to hate this poor kid? Again, to reiterate, I'm not talking about disliking his songs, I'm talking about all those folks who legitimately hate him. Those people who wholeheartedly despise Justin Bieber for who he is. So why? Why do we hate Bieber?
The answer came to me when watching Never Say Never, when some cute little girl was speaking about her hero.
“He's, like, a normal kid who had a dream, and it, like, came true.”
I sincerely believe that people hate him because he is doing exactly what he wants to be doing. He is living his dream. Everyone has a dream, which is hopefully backed by a talent. Everyone wants to take their talent to the top and live out their dreams. However, how many young men love to skateboard, idolize Tony Hawk, yet are stuck working at McDonald's and flipping patties? Or a woman who loves to play cello, and wants to be in an orchestra, yet is stuck in an office, pushing pencils? Bieber didn't work that hard for what he has received. He was twelve years old, sang in a small contest, and then was just found. This was all given to him. His stardom was a gift, plain and simple. And that's the reason people hate him: because he didn't “earn” it. It's true; I don't think he earned his celebrity status at all. It was most definitely handed to him on a platter, but he is doing what he loves. He loves singing, he loves playing the piano, and he loves making music.
If someone gave you the chance, you'd do the same. If you love writing, someone sees your writing, and Penguin Books wants to publish you, what would you do? If you love acting, then Disney hires you to play a major role in their next movie, what would you do? If you love drawing, and then Marvel hires you to draw for them, what would you do? If you love singing, and L.A. Reid decides he wants to give you a record deal, what would you do? Bieber became a celebrity out of nowhere. He was fourteen when he really started becoming famous, and it was a slap in the face to everyone who wasn't doing what they loved. This kid hadn't even reached puberty, and he had already made it. He has done it. He has lived his dreams. Meanwhile, you're stuck in your minimum wage job, doodling in your notepad and wishing people knew your name. “Mr. Fungulio, Artist.”
So that's why people hate Justin Bieber. He is that reminder that you haven't done anything with your life. So why don't you quit your whining and do something about? Get your book self-published, put your art in shows, get your band playing at local venues, audition for small roles in local movies. Start small; work your way up there. Just because it was thrust upon Justin Bieber, don't think it's impossible for you. Yes, it will take some time, but don't let that discourage you.
And for goodness' sake, give the kid a break.