Sassy Justin Bieber and his hair are welcome on social media any day of the week. And, after four days of more or less radio silence, Tuesday produced a gem.
En route via private jet to his Purpose World Tour show in St.Louis, Missouri, after a break on the Caribbean island of Antigua, the 22-year-old superstar Instagrammed a video of himself hilariously poking fun at himself, and lightly responding to the (mostly) social media-generated overkill regarding his latest dreadlocks hairstyle.
Seconds after sharing his video, the singer added a self-deprecating caption, writing, “Being weird is fun’ if u r not weird I don’t like you.”
A T-shirt clad Biebs is seen lying down on the jet for his comic bit, which he pulled off in the style of Keanu Reeves (circa 1989’s Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure), according to his longtime stylist, Karla Welch.
— Karla Welch Stylist (@karla_welch) April 19, 2016
The heartthrob also showcased an Australian accent which Aussie Orange Is Not The Only Black friend, Ruby Rose, later commented on at the singer’s post.
During the clip Justin quips, “Dude, are you gonna do anything with your hair? Are you just gonna leave it like that, dude?”
He then recalled a disapproving remark about his dreadlocks made by “some girl,” possibly recently in Antigua.
With a smile he said, “Yeah, some girl came up to me, she was like, ‘I love you Justin but, like, that’s like my least favorite hair style of yours.'”
Based on some of the thousands of comments which fans left at Bieber’s Instagram video, Beliebers aren’t swayed by the arguable cultural appropriation accusations hurled at the singer after he debuted his dreads on Instagram a few days before the iHeart Radio Music Awards on April 3.
The Biebs also came in for flak when he defended Kylie Jenner after she was accused of exploiting black culture when she wore cornrows. Months later, the “Love Yourself” singer shared a pic of himself with cornrows during a New Year vacation in St. Barts.
In the latter case, he was apologetic about wearing the style, writing, “these will be off tomorrow” in his Instagram caption.
Some online users and sites even leveled a racism charge at the singer because of his locks. Or, more realistically, because he’s Justin Bieber.
The furor took place amid news of a black female student accosting a white, dreads-wearing male student at San Francisco State University last month. The incident kicked off arguments and counter-arguments about whether debatable accusations of cultural appropriation justified one person verbally confronting and physically touching another person.
More measured voices commented in blogs and at the tsunami of media articles which followed, reminded the Internet that dreadlocks have been traced back to multiple cultures over thousands of years and are not unique to black culture.
According to the majority of historical or anthropological texts on the subject, dreads were worn by the ancient Greeks, European Celts, Vikings, and other Norse tribes, Irish Picts, Jews, Ethiopians, Kenyans, Egyptians, Indian Sadhus, Caribbeans, Islamic Dervishes, Tibetans, Aborigines, Aztec priests, and possibly other cultures.
In light of the above, Justin Bieber’s funny approach to the overwrought row over his dreadlocks can be seen as refreshing. It is almost guaranteed he would be criticized whatever he says or does, so perhaps the superstar’s levity is understandable.
Damned if he does, damned if he doesn’t?
[Images via Instagram]