The people of America have spoken, and at least 260,610 of them want to see Canadian pop musician Justin Bieber deported back to his home country. The Justin Bieber deportation petition, which was launched in late January, has reached its goal of garnering 100,000 signatures by February 22 and will consequently force an official response by the White House.
The right to petition the government is a right guaranteed to all Americans and is protected under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution. It enables Americans to petition the current Administration to take action on a range of issues facing the country. If a petition garners enough support and complies with the governmental Terms of Participation, it will be reviewed by White House staff members who will ensure its delivery to “appropriate policy experts” and issue an official response.
The Bieber deportation petition states that the American people feel wrongly represented by pop culture and want to see the reckless and destructive star deported “and his green card revoked.” The petition states that Bieber’s behavior is both threatening the safety of Americans and negatively influencing America’s youth. At present, over 260,000 Americans agree with the petition’s statements calling “to remove Justin Bieber from our society.”
The notorious pop star has had a year of tremendous legal issues. According to ABC News, Bieber’s bad behavior has so far resulted in a DUI arrest, a vandalism investigation (following an alleged egging of his neighbor’s home that resulted in a reported $20,000 in damages), and an assault charge following an altercation with a limo driver.
Convictions could result in huge problems for the troubled youngster. The Department of Homeland Security does state that legal permanent residents, like Bieber, can be deported if convicted of a serious crime. Michael Wildes, New York City immigration attorney, warns Bieber that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) could make a case for reviewing his legal status. Bieber currently possesses an O-1 visa, which is typically reserved for people who show “extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics,” according to ABC News. Justin Bieber’s bad behavior, coupled with a deportation petition that meets the participation and signature thresholds required by the government, will force an official response from the White House.
When will the White House respond to the Bieber deportation petition? According to the government website, no time frame is guaranteed. The site states that, although White House staff does its best to respond to petitions that meet threshold requirements “in a timely fashion,” responses may be delayed depending on volume of petitions and the topic at hand. As of now, the timing and direction of the government’s response is anyone’s best guess.
The petition to deport Justin Bieber will force a response from the White House at some point but, in the meantime, folks seem satisfied with speculating on the future of the troubled teen. Another petition to save the Biebs from getting deported was launched on January 25. The petition, which argues that the star is a human being who makes mistakes but has reportedly “saved so many lives,” has garnered just 8,400 responses so far.
By Katie Bloomstrom