Justin Bieber’s battered public image and recent months of bad press, described by Jet magazine as a “media assassination,” have been frankly addressed by its cover star Chris Brown in a new profile.
Pulling no punches in an interview that also touched on Jay Z, slain teen Trayvon Martin, monster themes in his graffiti, and Karreuche Tran, Brown said “unconscious racism” was behind changed perceptions of the Canadian superstar.
“Justin’s not a bad kid, I’ve been around him. But if he hangs with too many Black people, ‘oh he’s hanging with the ni**as, so we’re going to let you go,'” Brown told Jet, back in September.
The 24-year-old continued, “That’s strictly what it is. It’s unconscious racism. C’mon, y’all know this s**t is bulls**t. So like at the end of the day, people f**k with people and Justin does great music. He’s still pop, but he hangs with the Black people.”
Many will no doubt take issue with Brown’s comments, and cite Bieber’s numerous entanglements with law enforcement, weed smoking, run-ins with paparazzi, peeing in a mop bucket, tensions with his Calabasas, Calif., neighbors, and the monkey saga — just some of the dramas the teen singer has either generated or attracted this year — as reasons for heightened antipathy toward the 19-year-old.
However, Brown is adamant Bieber’s seismic shift from adopted American sweetheart to Canadian “bad boy” is underpinned by a sense that white people no longer feel they can relate to him.
“I can identify with what he’s going through,” Brown says, alluding to his own spectacular fall from grace in 2009 after he assaulted his then girlfriend, Rihanna.
“People don’t understand certain people, so if they don’t understand you, they automatically hate you. They cancel you out,” Chris told Jet, adding, “I’m speaking out now because I really don’t care anymore.”
Brown, who has been friends with Bieber, has expressed uncompromising support for the “Beauty and A Beat” star throughout his difficult year.