With his front page cover of Rolling Stone on stands today, Justin Bieber joins the long list of teenage celebrities who have taken a short-sighted approach to reproductive health issues. In the interview, Bieber who admits to not understanding the party system in the U.S., provides offers his opinion on abortion: "I really don't believe in abortion," Bieber says. "It's like killing a baby?"
When asked about cases of rape, Bieber gives his opinion on a situation that he will never find himself: "Um. Well, I think that's really sad, but everything happens for a reason. I guess I haven't been in that position, so I wouldn't be able to judge that." Thanks for reserving judgment on victims of sexual assault, Biebs, but chalking rape induced pregnancy up to fate sounds a little too close to victim blaming.
Like many other manufactured stars of the past few years (Jonas Brothers, Jessica Simpson, Britney Spears) the fame and influence that Bieber has to help fellow teens become aware of contraceptives and the prevention of STDs is wasted. Ironically, unlike his predecessors, Bieber isn’t touting abstinence until marriage, but rather waiting until you’re in love to have sex. While this viewpoint is likely to be much more in tune with other teens, it’s a wonder if this split philosophy will bode well for the star and any young women he may “love.”
What is most disturbing about this interview is the affect his words may have on the 16 year old’s thousands of teenaged female fans. While Bieber is certainly entitled to his opinion and it is very likely Rolling Stone baited him with controversial questions in order to sell magazines, he may want to take a pause before tackling such a complex issue in such a public way. Particularly on issues on which he appears to have little to no experience with. With a film number two at the box office, Bieber most certainly holds a powerful influence over young girl’s wallets, but after this interview one can only hope the same is not true of his fan’s opinions.