“It’s frightening and sad.”

“But what if it’s not? I don’t think this is the usual holocaust stuff.”

Suzie and I just had an interesting discussion about the recent Anne Frank/Justin Beiber stuff that’s going around the internet.

 In case you missed it, apparently Beiber went to the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam as he was traveling Europe and wrote in the guestbook “Truly inspiring to be able to come here. Anne was a great girl. Hopefully she would have been a belieber.” (A “belieber” is a fan of Justin Beiber.)

Everyone immediately got up in arms about Beiber’s arrogance, because it is a certain kind of insanity to want EVERYONE to be your fan, even if you are a 19 year old pop star.

But that’s not the part Suzie and I were talking about. We were talking about the internet response to Beiber’s remark–and like everything else online, the Anne Frank/Justin Beiber story seems mostly appalling with a few rare moments of insight.
 I showed Suzie a few of the memes in response to Beiber’s gaffe, and she was taken aback. There are several very good photoshopped photos of Anne Frank at Justin Beiber concerts along with a handful of fake diary posts about wanting to go to a concert, etc. (See them yourself at http://www.buzzfeed.com/mjs538/the-internet-responds-to-justin-bieber-and-anne-frank .)

“These photos are disrespectful.” Suzie was upset by the photoshopping.

“But they’re exactly what she would be doing if she were alive today!” I was more hopeful.

“True… but do you really think the people who put them up are thinking like that?”

“Maybe not, but maybe some of them are.”

“It’s creepy.”

“No it’s not! She was a normal 13 year old girl! She looks just like one of your students!”

“But she was killed at Bergen-Belsen!”

“Yes, but this is kind of beautiful, because it’s looking at what her life might have been like today. I dunno, I think in a certain way it’s maybe even triumphant.”

Suzie shrugged.

I shrugged.

What do you think?

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