Once, Justin Bieber mentioned the Arab Spring on Twitter. He got 34,000 responses. Technically, that made his Twitter stream the largest single online forum for discussing the Middle Eastern uprising in the world. It was the Tahrir Square of North American children. Such is his almighty power. The man has more followers than the entire population of his native country, Canada. Yet he has never seemed to use this awesome might for anything less banal than to tell them that he is "stoked", or that he "thinks Taylor Swift is awesome", or he "freakin loves cheese", or whatever it is his milksop tastes consider broadcastable.
It must be extraordinary to see those levels of aggregated humanity. When you get 34,000 responses to a single banal comment, you must feel like God does when people pray to Him: looking down at this sea of tiny pixels, each one a life, a story, a perspective. You must simultaneously feel the dazzling variety of human experience, and at the same time, realise just how similar people are, when you get down to it. That, for all our emphasis on personality and wearing different brands of jeans, basically all we are is differently-coiffed sacks of the same meat product, who have about three opinions to divvy up between us.
If, as now seems likely, he's going to go down in flames, Bieber shouldn't just do so by half-measures. He shouldn't just gradually shudder machine-like through the wild mood swings, tabloid drugs busts, public apologies, allegations of sexual assault and declarations of bankruptcy that we're all predicting for him. It's a path that's too well-worn. Now that the writing's on the wall, as the first megastar of new media, Bieber should at least exploit that direct link he has with his followers and have some fun with them.
For a start, he should announce that he intends to marry the one girl who can convince him that she is the most fervent Belieber of all time. Then he should just sit back and watch vulnerable people get his body tattooed onto theirs and assassinate journalists who have spoken ill of the potty-mouthed baby-face in a hilarious global jamboree of deluded pain. Then, he should tell them that the final task will be to secure Palestinian sovereignty on the West Bank, and watch thousands of young Beliebers go off like tom thumbs as they suicide-bomb Israeli buses.
Thirdly, rather than feeding them the same lazy sap about positivity and self-belief, he should try and genuinely change the lives of his followers for the better by becoming a next-gen Marie Stopes. Obviously, this will be an abrupt volte face. Right now, Justin's mother is using his money to help make an anti-abortion film. And when Bieber talks about "God" at his concerts, he means the one who hates abortions. Not the one who wants you to be happy. He is on record as saying that “abortion is like killing a baby”. Right now, he's looking a generation of vulnerable adolescents in the eyes and telling them that their mistakes ought to be a life sentence.
Naturally, the reason that Justin's mum feels so strongly about this is that she will always hear the voices in her own head that told her to abort her future teen idol. She feels the existential terror every day of how close she came to liquidating her golden ticket. To her, this is obviously a point of great pathos. But also: someone should just sit her down with a big book of statistics. Not everyone is the 18-year-old Pattie Mallette who worked two jobs and needed help from her local church in order to keep baby Justin clothed and fed, and not every baby will be Bieber. For many, abortion is a choice that should be made without people nagging away at them that their foetus could one day become the most widely-adored teenage boy on the planet.
So, wouldn't it be wonderful if Bieber threw his career away by embracing the abortion? By turning his concerts into pro-choice spectaculars; abortion rallies where he'll hand out "purity rings" signifying the willingness of its wearer to remain un-tainted by religious or political pressures when deciding what to do about any unwanted pregnancies Bieber, or any other man, may foist upon them? Unfortunately, I think he's more likely to act like an alien, embrace religion ever further, subjugate enough hookers to make Genghis Khan look abashed and probably smoke some more weed.
Today, he received 50,000 RTs for "Slept good last night. hanging with the boys today. #goodtimes". Tomorrow it could be 50,000 for "keep your rosaries off my ovaries". If only.
Previously: This Is What Will Happen When the Queen Dies