Fans are often excited to be in the company of celebrities, but it seems residents of Buckhead, a neighborhood in Atlanta, GA, refused to welcome Justin Bieber into their neighborhood. A protest followed by a facebook page dedicated to the event was started against him for which almost 136 residents signed up.
Bieber is a Canadian born singer-songwriter and actor. He was first discovered through his YouTube video and rose to prominence with his single One-Time. His lead single Baby from the album My Word 2.0 became the most viewed video on the video sharing website YouTube. His fan base continuously developed and grew as his career progressed but Bieber also became the center of criticism for many.
He continued to make headlines but often for the wrong reasons. Bieber’s tour buses were twice raided in 2013 where narcotics and a stun gun were found in one and marijuana in the other. The same year Bieber was also charged with vandalism in Brazil and was heavily criticized for stating that he hoped holocaust victim Anne Frank would have been a belieber. News of his first arrest came in 2014 on January 23 when he was arrested for driving under the influence in Miami Beach, Florida. Post-arrest drug tests revealed that THC and Xanax were present in his system at the time of the arrest. Perhaps these very controversies caused Buckhead’s residents to develop a less than welcoming attitude towards Bieber.
Bieber expressed interest in purchasing a mansion in Atlanta, citing his desire to get close to the thriving rap community as his reason. Harold White, a resident for many years, was displeased with the idea of Bieber as his neighbor and organized a protest just as news about Bieber began to surface. The protest will be carried out 6 a.m. this Monday in front of the very mansion Bieber is rumored to be interested in. White said he was worried about the type of influence and unwanted attention Bieber would bring to the neighborhood. According to him Bieber should chose a place that befits his “eclectic lifestyle” instead of the calm and peaceful neighborhood of Buckhead.
Neither Bieber nor his representatives have confirmed the rumor of his possible interest but the very idea of him moving in has been enough to get residents all worked up. White’s wife even started a Facebook campaign against Bieber. The page stated that Bieber will be a bad influence to the children as well as to the entire community. Parents would no longer be able to let their children play freely outside. White’s wife through the page posed the question of what is to stop Bieber from racing in the streets while under the influence, something he has already done in the past.
White and his wife are not the only ones to share these views as multiple resident agree with them and are planning to take part in the protest this Monday. Sam Massell, Buckhead’s Coalition President, said that everyone has an equal right to purchase the property including Bieber. He also added that everyone also has a right to protest and express how they feel. For these reasons Massell will allow the protest to proceed but will not personally attend it.
Bieber might have started as an international pop sensation but his recent actions have painted a negative image in the eyes of many. So much so that residents of Buckhead are no longer willing to openly welcome Bieber into a neighborhood that is already home to a number of superstars.
By Hammad Ali