As each new video of Justin Bieber being a racist little prick finds its way to our computer screens, the person whose reaction I’ve been the most curious about is Usher. After all, he’s the person who brought Justin to fame in the first place, and as a black man, I can’t imagine he’s thrilled at the word that Justin would use to describe him.
He hasn’t issued an official statement yet — I’m still optimistically holding out hope that one is coming — but apparently he’s ‘disappointed’ in Justin. Uh huh. Yeah. I’m betting he’s ‘disappointed’ in him like Ryan Gosling is decent-looking and Katy Perry was mildly interested in John Mayer. Come on! But according to Hollywood Life, that’s where Usher has landed in this situation:
“Usher has seen the video and he was aware of it a while ago. He doesn’t believe Justin is racist, just stupid. He is very disappointed in the direction Justin has been going and is trying to lead him in the right direction.”
Okay I thought that too when the first video came out – that Justin probably wasn’t racist, just an idiot. But in the second one, he jokes about murdering a black person so that there will be ‘one less lonely nigger’, and he can join the KKK. Talking about killing someone purely based on the color of their skin, which you use a slur to define? That’s some racist shit right there, and I don’t think you can argue otherwise.
At the time the video was filmed, Justin was apparently already being mentored by Usher and Will Smith, so he had all the tools at his disposal to be aware of how and why racist slurs are wrong, and how they might damage his career and personal relationships.
“[Usher] has tried to intervene but Justin is still very immature. Usher knows that this ultimately will reflect on him since he is Justin’s mentor, and he’s addressing his disappointment to him verbally, in hopes that it will make Justin realize the harm he is causing. He wants to get Justin into the studio and have him spend time making records, not remarks and bad choices.”
At this point, I think Usher needs to say something, and it needs to be to someone other than Justin. He’s apparently shown Justin ‘historically racist videos to drive home how hurtful these words can be’, but I don’t think a video clip is gonna be enough to get through Justin’s thick skull. Sure, he’s issued a couple apologies, but they’re just canned collections of Bible quotes and claims that he’s a man now.
I’ll believe it when I see it, but in the meantime, what this kid needs is a serious dose of consequences.