Controversy seems to surround Justin Bieber both on and off the stage. On April 12, during his European tour, Bieber visited the Anne Frank house in Amsterdam. While at the home of the 15 year-old Holocaust victim, who died at Bergen Belsen concentration camp in 1945, Bieber wrote in the guest book:
"Truly inspiring to be able to come here. Anne was a great girl. Hopefully she would have been a belieber."
A “belieber” is a coined phrase for a Justin Bieber fanatic, and his use of the word toward the girl who helped reveal the atrocities of WWII by her diary has now gone viral. Rapper 50 Cent and even Anne Frank’s stepsister Eva Schloss have defended Bieber against public outcry, but others insist that Bieber was being insenstive.
The Exponent checked in with a few local high school and college students to see what they thought:
Danielle Gladstone, 18, of Dresher
Senior at Upper Dublin High School
"I think that he should not have said that because it is kind of selfish on his part. I don’t know if he knew what she had to go through during that era. It was kind of out of line, but the first part was nice."
Brett Krasner, 17, of West Chester
Senior at Jack M. Barrack High School
Gillie Strauss, 21, of West Chester
Junior at Penn State University
"I think it is disrespectful and random and I didn’t have high opinions of Justin Bieber to begin with. He totally missed the point of seeing Anne Frank’s house and proved to be very immature."
Sapir Sabag, 18, of Philadelphia
Senior at Kosloff Torah Academy
"That's crazy that Justin Bieber said that. I think that's really selfish that he would make a tragedy about himself, and on a larger scale, it shows that this generation’s mindset is completely corrupted."
Rachel Feldman, 19, of Dresher
Freshman at College of Charleston
"He missed the point entirely by going to Anne Frank’s house. It should have been about paying respects, but instead he was incredibly disrespectful. Him saying that proves that this was more of a publicity stunt than learning about a young girl who died in the Holocaust."
Hannah Kelsen, of Merion
Senior at Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy
"It really upsets me, because it is diverting the attention from Anne Frank’s house and making it about himself. I am a Justin Bieber fan, but this definitely showed his true character. I like him as a singer, but not as a person anymore."
What do you think? Comment below or weigh in on our Facebook page.