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Rolling Stone Asks Justin Bieber About Abortion and Rape? Oh, Thank God!

Written by Amie Newman for - News, commentary and community for reproductive health and justice.

Justin Bieber is on the cover of Rolling Stone - set to hit stands and online on February 18th (for all of you RH Reality Check/Justin Bieber fans!). The 15-year-old pop mega-star is asked about the usual RS star-topics: music, movies, politics and sex. But Bieber is alsoquestioned about his positions on more controversial issues; namely abortion and rape. Since the issue isn't available yet, I'm only going on what's been teased on the web site:

He does have a solid opinion on abortion. "I really don't believe in abortion," Bieber says. "It's like killing a baby?" How about in cases of rape? "Um. Well, I think that's really sad, but everything happens for a reason. I don't know how that would be a reason. I guess I haven't been in that position, so I wouldn't be able to judge that."

Despite what you may think, I'm actually not bothered by his position on abortion (other than the fact that he seems to question what it even is). I think his thoughts on abortion and rape are the thoughts of a sheltered 15-year-old pop star who hasn't been taught to think about women or women's health in a mature or nuanced way. I think it's frightening that his opinions will obviously affect many of his fans' thoughts on the issue. Honestly, though, I don't feel like Justin Bieber needs to expound upon women's health and rights from a place of expertise (someone needs to teach him the "no comment" rule though if he hasn't bothered to construct a coherent opinion).

The more interesting question to ponder here is:

Just why in the name of conservative, Christian, teen-stars do we need to know Justin Bieber's "opinion on abortion" in the first place?  Why do Bieber fans care what his personal feelings are about whether women, young women or older women, "should" be able to have an abortion? Or whether a girl or woman who has been raped and impregnated by her attacker should have the right to an abortion? Why should anyone care?

Yes, he's got the squeaky-clean pop star thing going on and it's certainly sensationalistic for the magazine to bring up these issues. But I'm asking why the interviewer thought to even ask the abortion and rape question in the first place; why does she even believe it's okay to ask a 15-year-old about what are some of the most personal experiences imaginable?

Oh, right. Because we've arrived at a place in time where women's and girls' health and lives are up for public debate and dialogue everywhere we turn. Read more