Why does Campus Progress want Justin Bieber fans to vote?
Justin Bieber is the target of all kinds of things. He has variously been sent to North Korea (well, almost), rumored to be deceased, and been sent unfertilized eggs in small test tubes with encouraging notes from fans (or if he hasn't, he will be soon!).
But now Campus Progress has decided to "leverage Justin Bieber's popularity" to promote voting, or something.
This is ridiculous. The ad is somewhat tongue-in-cheek; half celebrity "Don't Vote" parody and half footage of rabid Justin Bieber fans chasing him from one side of the screen to the other. But if it has its intended effect, it will result in the polls being flooded with people who are trying to guess what their twelve year-old sons and daughters believe Justin Bieber wants and voting accordingly. Forget WWJD! The only thing I know for sure about Jesus is that Pastor Terry Jones said he would have burned the Koran! WWJBD?
Often, people disagree about who should and shouldn't be allowed to vote. Here's who I think shouldn't be allowed to vote: people who believe they are voting on behalf of Justin Bieber.
I'm sorry, that's just where I draw the line.
I'm not a Bieber fan, but I came pretty close after one flew into my house, bit me on the ankle, and I almost didn't get the booster shot in time.
It's not that I object to them personally. It's just that I object to their having any say in who runs government.
Deranged homeless people? Deranged people with stable homes? Corpses? I don't care! Sign them up to vote! In droves! Those people who turned out to have died in 1870 at least were strong party-line voters. Not Bieber! He'll be all over the place. He's Canadian. They're so hard to predict. All I know about them is that they like hockey, their only hobbies are "legalizing" things and "nationalizing" other things, and they say "eh" a lot. Some of them speak French.
In some ways, this is the worst political ad ever. It's actively encouraging the one group of Americans who really shouldn't be voting to go out and bludgeon their well-meaning relatives into electing people for strange reasons. I know some Americans are disenfranchised, and it's not always fair. Convicts can't vote, and some of them were wrongfully convicted! But Bieber and these Bieber maniacs have brought this on themselves. If they weren't going to vote in the first place, we certainly shouldn't encourage them.
"Do you believe that the best reason to vote is that your choice will impact Justin Bieber's future?" these ads should ask. "Do not vote." "Think you need to cast a ballot on behalf of Justin Bieber, who is disenfranchised because he is underaged and Canadian? No, you don't. Stay home. We're begging you." "Are you about to encourage your parents to vote because Justin Bieber needs a say? Don't do that. Apologize to your parents for having failed to develop the capacity to decide what is actually important in life."
Ultimately, this is why voting is so important. If this ad campaign works, we'd better get ourselves to the polls--if for no other reason than to counterbalance the Bieber people. I'm going to vote eight times! And so would Jesus!
| September 13, 2010; 3:38 PM ET
Tags: Alexandra Petri
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