Justin Bieber, Kanye West, Karl Marx, and John Rawls: Is She a Gold Digger?

November 15, 2011

Political Theory

For those of you who haven’t heard, Justin Bieber has been having some baby daddy drama as of late. A 20-year-old fan has accused the 17-year-old pop star of being the father of her 4-month-old baby.

I read an interesting article in the Huffington Post today, “What Justin Bieber and Gold Diggers Can Teach Us About Feminism.” The general sentiment of the article is based on Kanye West’s song “Gold Digger”, and states the negative connotation of women as gold diggers isn’t due to songs like this, but rather to the women who inspired them. The media is constantly bombarded by stories of fans getting pregnant by celebrities, whether they are movie stars, singers, or athletes. The author of this article, Keli Goff, brings up the point that many of these women do their best to get pregnant on purpose, so that they can subsequently sue the rich men they slept with, and be able to garner “18 years of security”.

I didn't know she was a gold digger, Kanye, I swear!

First I started thinking about this article in terms of Rawls’ ideas. Clearly the women that are involving themselves in these pregnancies and lawsuits are looking to gain monetary support, and sometimes even their 15 minutes of fame.  When we compare these women to famous celebrities, clearly there is a difference, a difference in ability to make money, a difference in skill, etc. So as Rawls’ says that differences in people’s abilities don’t entitle those with better abilities to more rewards, does that mean that what these women do is okay? Or that all they are trying to do is minimize the gap between the poor and the rich?

I then started thinking about this idea in the context of Marx. Maybe it is possible that these women are the proletariat, and the celebrities are the bourgeoisie, and that this is a form of proletariat revolution. Marx subscribed to the theory of historical materialism. In this case, can the monetary desires of these women be considered historical materialism? Is all this baby mama and baby daddy drama driving history to change?

Who knew Marx was such a bro?

What do you think Marx would say about these issues? Is this an issue of historical materialism? Does the Theory of Justice apply in this case? Are these baby daddies a class of the bourgeoisie, and the pregnant fans the proletariat?








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3 Comments on “Justin Bieber, Kanye West, Karl Marx, and John Rawls: Is She a Gold Digger?”

  1. rmwells3 Says:

    I find the connection between the two to be a little farfetched, personally. However, this is not the first time I’ve heard of something like this. Before we can begin to speculate what Marx would say or how his concept of class consciousness of the dominant class would apply to this scenario we need to know if this girl is actually pregnant with Bieber’s child and or if her intentions are legitimately bad or not.

    If she truly is pregnant with Bieber’s baby than she, rightfully so, has a claim to monetary support from Bieber. Yes, this could’ve been planned by the 20 year old girl, but realistically that is asking for a lot of legal trouble, a negative reputation, and a lot of attention that most people do not want. I’m not saying that there aren’t those who would do such a thing, it just seems that human nature and Rousseau’s argument for mankind’s innate ability of compassion would deem this act as one that would be very unlikely to occur.

    Now to connect this with Marx, It would require a class consciousness of the dominant class (the proletariat) to be revolting against the bourgeoisie. In this instance, I see only one individual, one gold digger if that actually is the case, separate from the rest of her “proletariat” class chasing her 15 minutes of fame and feeble attempt of trying to earn a quick and large payday. Thus, there really is no class consciousness or class revolt from the majority, as the majority wouldn’t do this, against a singular bourgeoisie figure. It’s not a class effort to lessen the wealth distribution difference between the rich and the poor. In my opinion, it’s one girl who may or may not be trying to get fame with no class intentions only self interest.

  2. mturner1013 Says:

    I feel that the connection with Marx is hard to make in this instance. I do not really see the women that seek child support from rich individuals, regardless of what they do, as a revolt against Marx’s bourgeoisie. I think about these women’s actions as being a more self-interest move, because in a lot of cases they can garner a fair amount of money, and are better able to support themselves, and their child. So to me, this is not a act of the proletariat (women) seeking a revolt against the bourgeoisie acceding to Marx’s theories, but rather women seeking money for their own personal interest. They, in most cases, have no intent to bring the rich or celebrities down, but rather bring themselves up. An example to this would be if a woman purposely got pregnant by a rich, but not famous, man. By this act, she may have ensured getting money out of the situation, but did not get her “15 minutes of fame”, and without the press the action may hurt the mans reputation much less, and on a much smaller scale. She is simply just trying to better herself, not bring down the fortunate. Therefore, in my opinion, this example doesn’t apply to Marx’s theories of the proletariat revolting against the bourgeoisie.

  3. leannaprairie Says:

    One thing I would like to add that perhaps I did not make clear enough… This is not the only woman who has said that she became impregnated by a celebrity… This is not a stand alone case, look at all the issues professional athletes have dealt with. Even Arnold Schwarzenegger has an illegitimate child.

    I recommend that you all read the article that inspired this post.

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