Unless you’ve been living under a rock this past week (gosh wouldn’t that be nice), you would know that superstar Justin Bieber was arrested for driving while intoxicated. Bieber has received castigation and sometimes praise for everything from the act itself to his adorable mug shot.
For people uninterested in the lives of celebrities, this whole incident is something to either quickly scold, snicker or both. However, for those that follow the lives of superstars, many may be left disappointed by yet another young starlet using his extensive privilege and influence to ill ends. Parents with children that look up to Biebs and his hair will now have to explain how nobody is perfect or even force their children to stop listening to the music of the (still alleged) lawbreaker.
This begs the question, though, how much influence should a 19-year-old superstar really have?
Miley Cyrus is another superstar with a controversial year, which included a hotly debated VMA performance and a video of her riding a wrecking ball in the nude. This editorial board has heard just about every opinion about Miley Cyrus. However, we’d like to note that Miley Cyrus is just as young as most of us (21), and is capable of making mistakes like the rest of us do. The spotlight on her, however, is infinitely greater than most of us SLU students have ever experienced.
With the spotlight on these two starlets for the past several years (even more for Miley), and showing no signs of abating, perhaps these two stars are just attempting to show how little they care about the world outside the people most immediate to them. Is this selfish? Of course it is, but so is everyone else. These stars, however, are burdened with appealing to a huge fan base, while simultaneously living the life they want which would likely not appeal to their fan base. They’re on a tightrope being pulled on both sides, and the cameras are always on them.
While many young performers have difficulty traversing their late teens and early teens, several stars manage to get through with utter class. One of these stars is Queen Beyoncé. At 33 years, Beyoncé is squarely on top of the world and can pretty much do no wrong at this point, barring some kind of arrest or drug abuse (but honestly, she’s too smart for that). Not only does the world recognize Beyoncé’s privileged position, she does as well. In her newly released album, she describes how the work she’s done over the years allows her to perform in ways she prefers. In this case, it is about utter sexuality! You know what? She does deserve to sing about sex without innuendo or clever metaphors; she’s earned it.
While no other artists can claim the throne that Beyoncé has, it would be nice if we as a society could grant them a little more space to grow as people, so hopefully they can turn out half as cool as Beyoncé.