Anger over Justin Bieber's Anne Frank message

 
Canadian singer Justin Bieber performs during a concert in Paris (19 march 2013) The singer's "belieber" comment was quoted on the Anne Frank House Facebook page

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Justin Bieber has caused outrage with his message in a guestbook at the Anne Frank Museum, saying he hoped the Holocaust victim would have been a fan.

The 19-year-old pop idol wrote: "Truly inspiring to be able to come here. Anne was a great girl. Hopefully she would have been a belieber."

It has provoked fierce online criticism of the Canadian singer, who is in Amsterdam as part of a tour.

The museum defended the star but added his comment "wasn't very sensible".

The Canadian singer's comment was quoted on the Anne Frank House Facebook page following his visit on Friday evening.

Anne Frank's diary, written during the two years the teenager and her family hid from the Nazis in occupied Amsterdam, made her a symbol of the suffering of Jews during World War II.

The house has been turned into a museum dedicated to the young girl, who died in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in 1945 aged 15.

The suggestion that had she lived today, the teenager would have been a "belieber" - a term used by his devoted fans to describe themselves - generated thousands of horrified responses on social networking websites.

"Just saw what Justin Bieber wrote in the Anne Frank Museum guestbook. Absolutely disgusted," read one tweet.

"Way to turn an inspiring moment into something about yourself," read another.

However, museum spokeswoman Maatje Mostart defended the young star to the BBC, saying: "He's 19. It's a crazy life he's living, he didn't mean bad… and also it's nice that he made the effort, he didn't have to come."

 

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  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 940.

    UNICEF have voted Dutch children the happiest in the world. They treat their young with respect, giving them the chance to develop without hindrance. Their infrastructure is geared around the young. Not surprising then that they are not attacking (actually defending) Beiber, still essentially a child (I remember being 19). They are an example to the UK who only seem to demonise the folly of youth.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 879.

    It would have been quite normal for girls of her age and at that time to be avid fans of movie stars and singers. Were she 12 years old and alive today she may well have been a Bieber fan. Although an extraordinary person, Anne Frank had the same kind of interests that many young teenagers still have today.

  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 834.

    Another interesting perspective on this... because of the publicity of this, how many millions of his adoring fans might actually pick up her diary, look through history, learn a little about it? That can only be a good thing. I think he should make a statement about it, perhaps apologize for the way it came across, and tell all his fans to actually READ her diary for themselves. Has he?

  • rate this
    -2

    Comment number 830.

    Bieber liked her and her gift for writing and he hoped that she would like him and his gift with music. Absolutely nothing wrong in what he wrote. It was what he thought and what he felt. And he has called attention to the Frank house to a generation that is more than a half century removed form that time period.

  • rate this
    -62

    Comment number 568.

    I feel (and I say feel because I can't possibly know) that Bieber was moved by his experience and wanted to imagine giving something in return. What he imagined was giving his music, something that he knows many people appreciate. We must remember that music, even in its very commercial forms is a human gift and a way of sharing.

 

Comments 5 of 17

 

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