Justin Elliott at Salon:
Andy Sullivan, a construction worker and Brooklyn native, has been one of the loudest opponents of Park51, the planned mosque and community center near ground zero. Founder of the 9/11 Hard Hat Pledge — under which construction workers vow not to work at the mosque site — Sullivan has been a regular presence on television, known for wearing his signature American flag hard hat and talking tough about radical Muslims.
So it was quite a surprise this month to read that Sullivan has set his sights on a new target: Canadian teen pop superstar Justin Bieber.
Mosque foes recently started a boycott of Bieber after he made comments in support of the mosque project in an interview with Tiger Beat, a teen fan magazine, Sullivan told WYNC earlier this month. Now, his 8-year-old daughter and 11-year-old son have been banned from attending Bieber performances.
“I informed them, ‘Hey guys, guess what? Justin Bieber spoke out for the ground zero mosque,” Sullivan explained to Salon in an interview. “My little girl took down his poster and said she didn’t want to have nothing to do with him anymore. These are my kids. They’re living this thing.”
A Facebook page has been set up by an ally of Sullivan publicizing the boycott of Bieber and several other pro-mosque celebrities. It has attracted nearly 500 fans.
Intrigued by the idea that Bieber would weigh in on one of the most polarizing political issues of the day, I began looking for his interview with Tiger Beat.
The magazine does cover Bieber obsessively (“Justin Bieber Dodges Dating Selena Gomez Question!” and “Did Justin Bieber Grow a Mustache?” are two recent features). But I couldn’t find any sign of an interview on Park51. There is, however, a post on the website CelebJihad.com purporting to describe a Tiger Beat interview. It reads in part:
In an interview with Tiger Beat, the pop sensation stressed that freedom of religion is what makes America great, and went on to say that those who oppose the Mosque are motivated by bigotry.
“Muslims should be allowed to build a mosque anywhere they want,” the singer said. “Coming from Canada, I’m not used to this level of intolerance, eh.”
Bieber went on to say that Muslims are “super cool,” Christians are “lame-o-rama,” and that the mosque will help “start a dialogue” with all religions about which Justin Bieber song is the most awesome.
“I was like seven when September 11th went down, and frankly I’m surprised people are still going on about it. Move on, already!”
Celebjihad.com seems to specialize in softcore celebrity porn, but poke around a bit and you find this disclaimer:
CelebJihad.com is a satirical website containing published rumors, speculation, assumptions, opinions, fiction as well as factual information
I was able to reach the proprietor of the site, who confirmed that the Bieber item is in fact a hoax. “[T]he fact that some people take it seriously is hilariously depressing,” he said in an e-mail.
John Del Signore at The Gothamist:
Welcome to The United States of Dumberica, 2010 2011. Andy Sullivan, a construction worker who’s been at the forefront of the “Ground Zero mosque” resistance, says his eight-year-old daughter and 11-year-old son have been banned from attending Bieber concerts. “I informed them, ‘Hey guys, guess what? Justin Bieber spoke out for the ground zero mosque,” Sullivan tells Salon. “My little girl took down his poster and said she didn’t want to have nothing to do with him any more. These are my kids, they’re living this thing.”
And a Facebook group has added Bieber to their list of “companies who support the Ground Zero Mosque.” In the weeks since, Bieber—his career in ruins—has been spotted singing backup in a Bachman-Turner Overdrive cover band, gigging in shabby hotel lobbies across the rust belt. But the former pop star still begins each set, performed for a smattering of his last die hard fans, with a defiant shout of Allah Hu Akbar. Then it’s all Takin’ Care of Business.
Let’s go to the Facebook comments!
Haha, this CHILD is so immature he has probably never even called a Muslim a mean name! Spending your time on Facebook opposing the theoretical construction of a single building in a city of skyscrapers thousands of miles away is how you act like an adult, you idiot!
Those Canadians just do not understand that you have to bomb Muslim countries and in turn get bombed by crazed Muslims. It’s called being a hero!
Poor Canada, living peacefully and inclusively with its peaceful Muslim population for decades. Perhaps, if we let Jesus know, He will help them murder the Muslims in their sleep.
Jim Newell at Gawker
Glynnis MacNicol at Business Insider:
Meanwhile the rest of us are left to wonder whether the August news cycle is going to be a 12 month affair in 2011.
There’s some point to be made here about the gullibility and outrage addiction that kicked off the “GZM” furor in the first place, but it’s probably too obvious.
If you needed confirmation that American political culture was in fact totally absurd, you’ve just found it.