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Award shows are typically big parties for successful people to pat each other on the back as aggressively as possible, but that usual script took a sharp detour earlier tonight at the Billboard Music Awards when a healthy percentage of the crowd decided to boo Justin Bieber after he was announced as the winner of the “Milestone Award”. The moment was extremely awkward, and that awkwardness was compounded by the fact that Bieber stood on stage processing the reaction for several minutes before he vaguely addressed it in his speech.
Here’s a look at what the Biebs had to say, as per E! News…
"I'm 19 years old, I think I'm doing a pretty good job and basically, from my heart, I really wanna say it should really be about the music. It should be about the craft, the craft that I'm making. This is not a gimmick. I'm an artist and I should be taken seriously and all this other bull should not be spoken of. I wanna thank my manager, Scooter Braun. I wanna thank my family at home. I wanna thank my mother, my father, I wanna thank Jesus Christ. Mom, I love you so much. Dad, I love you. Little brother and sister, I love you so much. Thank you guys so much. Fans, you're incredible."
As a sports fan, I’m very comfortable with booing as a way for a large group of fans to express in the moment frustration for a lack of effort. That being said, booing someone at an award show is a little bit more of a moral gray area. On the one hand, since Bieber makes his living off entertaining other people and getting them to pay for his concerts, he should be used to negative reactions. He should be comfortable enough with his place in popular culture. On the other hand, however, there’s something distasteful about raining on a moment that’s supposed to be a parade, especially when that person didn't say anything inflammatory at the show.
What do you think? Were fans right to boo Bieber tonight? Let us know your thoughts by voting in the poll below…
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