As the infectious plague that is “Bieber fever” sweeps the nation, one has to wonder if President Barack Obama is immune from catching it. Although our president has denied having Justin Bieber on his iPod, the two have some stunning attributes in common, something that may surprise our commander-in-chief. A meteoric rise to superstardom, a master of oration, adoration by millions of kids worldwide- am I talking about Bieber, or am I talking about Obama?
Both Obama and Bieber are at what seems to be a crossroads in their career maturation, a crossroads that also puts them in a comparative position. Obama on one hand is facing major disapproval ratings nationally and criticism from both directions, while Bieber’s charm and appeal are being brought into question by critics who claim that puberty will doom his career.
When Obama was on the campaign trail, he could only say the right things. The power of his words brought light to dark skies, and turned water into wine. Journolisters nationwide were obsessed with him. His teflon-image was so bulletproof from criticism that he could have clubbed a baby seal and still been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. But something along the way went wrong for Obama.
Obama’s problems started to arise when people got tired of hearing the same words come out of his mouth over and over again. His rhetoric failed to evolve. The freshness of his campaign speeches began to rot. Even his closest friends in the media got tired of blaming Bush for everything. People actually started to realize that his cute rhetoric was nothing more than just that- cute. There was no depth, no substance, and his reluctance to take leadership and responsibility during crisis made him seem childish. His ‘cool factor’ disappeared, and people now wonder if he understands the complexity of the issues are country faces.
Justin Bieber has similar problems. There are few children in America that aren’t in one way or another fans of the Biebster. This kid can’t even go to the mall without the 11-year old female mafia assailing him for autographs and pictures. From a public relations standpoint, the kid is a one-man boy-band. But what is the appeal about Bieber?
If one is to listen to his songs you wonder about the content. Is it even possible that this teen-heartthrob can possibly comprehend the emotional depth that his songs contain? Even though his pre-pubescent and auto-tuned voice generates some admittedly catchy tunes, will his music evolve over time? Will he stop singing about the same freaking topics? Can his appeal based on boyish charm withstand the inevitable voice cracking that comes with age? Only time will tell if Bieber is a musical-darwinist, one who can adapt to the changes of his personal biology and environment.
Whenever one listens to either Obama or Justin Bieber, you are essentially listening to the same track on repeat. Whereas Justin’s biological maturation may have something to do with his looming success or demise, the same cannot be said for Obama. Our president has entered his political puberty. People will now ignore the flowery tone of his voice, and instead assess his intelligence based on the merit of his actions. If both Barack and Justin fail to adapt, their fanfare will die out. Bieber will remain the richest kid in the world- while Obama will join the other 10% of America who lost their job to the recession.
Rob Lockwood is the Director of Communications for the College Republican National Committee. He is a graduate of The George Washington University. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.