On Beliebing

No.  I’m not a Belieber.  Most definitely not.  The first time I saw a video of his on television a few years ago I wanted to throw something at the TV.  It was a case of instant, primal dislike as I have only felt a few times in my life.  I didn’t even know who he was then.  I’m only writing this because he’s performing in SA tonight and I read something about the performance on a news site this morning on which I felt the need to comment.

So, what can be so hair-raising that it would make me give free publicity to the Bieber?  Apparently a bunch of teenage girls have been camping out in front of the gates of the stadium where he’ll be performing since last night.  In fact, according to the article there were so many of them that they were blocking access for people coming to watch Bon Jovi’s performance at the same venue last night, forcing security at the venue to move them out of the way.  I have several problems with this.

First, tickets for the performance have been sold out months ago already.  What exactly is the point of camping out at a concert venue if you already have a ticket?  I know what your answer is going to be:  it’s for the experience.

Which brings me to my second problem:  The performance is in Cape Town, a popular tourist destination, to be sure, but also a city known for prostitution, gang violence and child and drug trafficking.  What idiot parent allows their teenage daughter to camp out overnight without adult supervision in a public place in a city like this (any city for that matter)?

Third, today was a normal school day.  All those kids camping out at the venue were skipping school.  One girl in the photo on the news website was even in school uniform, prompting the very valid question whether her parents even knew that she was at the venue or whether she had left home that morning with them believing she was headed to school.  (That poor commenter was of course overwhelmed with downvotes and comments accusing her of suffocating her own children and taking out her miserable childhood on others.  On a side-note, in case you have not yet heard, NEVER read the comments on news websites.  Nor comment yourself.  Nothing good can come of it.)  It’s only four weeks until midyear exams start over here after the shortest term of the year.  As a former teacher the idea of all these kids bunking school riles me up like you have no idea.

Then there was also the article yesterday regarding rules for the performance.  You know, stuff like if your kids attend without you, make sure they have your contact details on them and know not to talk to strangers, stuff parents are supposed to do and teach their kids but which nowadays they apparently need to be told.  And then the one that really got me: no alcohol will be sold to underage children.  At an event attended primarily by underage children, why on earth would alcohol be for sale in the first place?

Our world has gone celeb-crazy, and Bieber-fever seems to be one of the best examples, bringing out the worst in teens and their parents.  I honestly think people need to get some perspective.

There’s at least one thing to be grateful for:  I live 1200 km from Cape Town.  Normally the thought makes me sad, but today it makes me very, very glad. 😀

(P.S. If any Beliebers read this and start using the comments to say how great he is, know that it will be considered trolling and your comments will be deleted without further debate.  You have been warned 😛 )