Dig Baton Rouge

What’s a Star to Beliebe in?

The top news – and joke of the week – still seems to be about Justin Bieber. The 19-year-old singer was arrested last week for drag racing while under the influence of drugs and alcohol. It’s hard not to laugh when you see his goofy smile in his jailhouse mug shot.

Looking into his confused, glazed over eyes is a different story though.

“What the f*** did I do?” Bieber is reported to have asked the arresting officer. “Why did you stop me?”

The sad part of this story isn’t that an underage kid did something stupid when he was messed up; that’s what being 19 is all about. The problem is that Bieber is so used to getting what he wants he honestly didn’t know he could get in trouble for it.

Rules aren’t the same for celebrities. They get in places they shouldn’t, are given things for free and get preferential treatment wherever they go. No one ever tells them no. Why shouldn’t their drunken illegal behavior be ignored, too?

Celebrities today have an intense amount of pressure placed on them, whether it is by their agents, the public or the ever-present paparazzi. It’s all too common for many to succumb to the temptations of drugs and alcohol. Inebriation then mixed with an increased sense of self-importance can lead to a warped view of reality.

This is where the entourage comes in. Celebrities, and rich people in general, always travel with an entourage. Why? They need a group of people they can trust to call them out when they’re being Anna Nicole Smith-level cray-cray.

The entourage is vital for the mental – and sometimes physical – survival of a celebrity. Whenever you see a celebrity have a meltdown or be hospitalized for “exhaustion,” you can assume that star has been left to his or her own devices.

The unfortunate part of all of these celebrity meltdowns is that it isn’t really their fault. These athletes, musicians and movie stars live their lives as an object, or as a product. How can they be expected to think about anything but themselves if they don’t have an outside perspective?

If a celebrity doesn’t have a family member or friend from pre-fame days to keep them “real,” they risk the chance of falling victim to a slew of mental health problems. Unfortunately, celebrities like Justin Bieber, Lindsay Lohan and Miley Cyrus have parents that not only enable, but even endorse, their bad behavior.

Billy Ray Cyrus has been quoted as defending his daughter’s sad, over-sexualized public cries for help. I assume every appearance Miley Cyrus has made in the last year is a cry for help, no?

Now, Justin Bieber was seen partying with his Dad the day after his DUI arrest. Come on, Jeremy Bieber! If you can’t help your son keep it real, who can? I’m guessing it’s hard to ground a kid you’re financially dependent on, but you’d expect a little more from someone’s parent. I guess that’s why you don’t have kids when you’re 17.

It’s not just celebrities who are always used to getting what they want. The wealthy lead a similar lifestyle that makes them demanding and out of touch reality.

The newest Oscar-nominated Martin Scorsese film, Wolf of Wall Street, depicts the inhumanity of the morally corrupt super-wealthy. Money, like fame, can get someone out of any bad situation. For Leonardo DiCaprio’s character a bad situation usually involved cocaine, prescription pills and a stripper. Sounds like the character Jordan Belford would fit in well at the Bieber household.

One of the overarching themes in Wolf of Wall Street is that there are no repercussions for the wealthy. The one voice of reason in the film was constantly shot down. Scorsese shows that the rich and famous don’t just get preferential treatment, they get whatever they want at whatever the cost. Often times, that cost is their own families or even their lives.

Though people still dream of being rich and famous, the once glamorous lifestyle is looking less enviable to the general public. Rehab, addiction and death are all side effects of getting everything you ever wanted. In layman’s terms: “Mo’ money, mo’ problems.”


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