How Jenny McCarthy’s predatory kiss with a teen Justin Bieber impacted the pop star

By Fatou Ferraro Mboup

Published Aug 26, 2023 at 09:00 AM

Reading time: 1 minute

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Justin Bieber recently found himself at the centre of a debate revolving around the challenges faced by celebrities who rose to fame during their childhood. The discussion has raised questions about young artists’ difficulties while growing up in the spotlight.

Bieber, who skyrocketed to fame back in 2010, has certainly come a long way since the days of ‘One Time’ and ‘Baby’. But while most netizens these days seem transfixed on the Canadian singer’s relationship with his wife Hailey Bieber, others have begun sparking conversations around how the young artist was treated by older industry professionals when he first came into the spotlight.

A video recently went viral showing an interaction between Bieber and actress and TV personality Jenny McCarthy. In the clip, which took place during the 2013 American Music Awards (AMAs), McCarthy can be seen kissing and pulling the young singer in close, prompting Bieber to awkwardly exclaim: “Wow. I feel violated right now.”

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After the incident, McCarthy attempted to clarify her actions to backstage reporters—although she honestly just ended up making herself look far creepier. The actress stated: “It was a little cougar scary, but I took the opportunity in the window, considering I’ll never get to do it again, and kind of molested him. I want some Bieber fever!” If that’s not predatory, I don’t know what is.

In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, McCarthy even went on to imagine the headlines if she, a 40-year-old at the time, were to have a romantic involvement with the 18-year-old singer, joking: “It would be the cougar score of the century.”

Bieber’s situation, unfortunately, isn’t an anomaly. Over the years, numerous child stars have transitioned from innocent beginnings to more mature personas, often raising concerns about the exploitation of their youthful fame. The entertainment industry’s influence on young stars is undeniable. From childhood, they are thrust into the spotlight, often guided by agents, managers, and producers who may prioritise profit over the stars’ wellbeing.

In a world that thrives on sensationalism, it’s imperative to remember that child stars are not just products for public consumption. They are individuals navigating the complex journey of growing up in a world that constantly scrutinises their every move.

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