Justin Bieber’s Camp Panics Over Pot Photos, Blames Lil Twist for Being a ‘Negative Influence’
Give an 18-year-old unlimited coin, unlimited freedom and the adoration of millions, and chances are good you won't see him staying home sipping chamomile tea and slogging through his Netflix queue.
But maybe Justin Bieber should give that a try. Because after the weekend he just had, his PR people are in full damage-control mode -- and he may be forced to find a new social circle.
On Friday night, Jan. 4, TMZ published photos from earlier in the week that seemed to show the Biebs with a blunt in his hand in a California hotel room. And no matter how you feel about the (okay, we'll say it: arcane) drug laws in this country, the fact remains that pot is still an illegal substance in the US.
And despite Justin's efforts of late to appeal to a more grown-up audience, the fact also remains that the bulk of his fan base is still comprised of little girls. In other words, while no one seems to care that Rihanna routinely posts photos of herself lighting up, the Biebs can't (yet) take such liberties.
So the day after those pictures hit the interwebz, Justin took to his Twitter account with a few messages for his 32 million followers. His missives didn't specifically address the brouhaha, but if you're good at reading between the lines, you knew exactly what he was talking about.
"Everyday growing and learning. Trying to be better. U get knocked down, u get up," he said on Jan. 5. "I see all of u. I hear all of u. I never want to let any of you down. I love u."
"2013 ... new challenges ... new doubters ... I'm ready," he continued, before switching gears to talk about his upcoming tour dates.
Regardless, Justin's people are in a bit of a panic, with an insider telling Us Weekly, "[His team] "isn't happy about those photos. They are grilling security about who could have taken them."
And some are placing the blame for the fact that he had the pot in the first place squarely on other people -- namely, Bieber's BFF, rapper Lil Twist. Supposedly he was the one rolling the joints in the hotel room the night the photos were taken, and given his Twitter profile picture and the fact that he's a Lil Wayne protege, it's kind of a given that it's always 420 in his universe.
As TMZ reports, "Sources involved in Justin's life who care about him are deeply concerned that Twist has become a powerful negative influence in his life and feel very strongly Justin needs a clean break from the rapper or else bad things are going to happen."
As you may recall, it was Twist who was driving Justin's white Ferrari when paparazzo Chris Guerra was killed last week -- and Chris had earlier told friends he'd seen Justin toking up in the car. The Biebs' love for herbage may have even played a part in his most recent split from girlfriend Selena Gomez (although with their shaky track record, who's to say).
Ironically, back in June of 2012, Justin's manager Scooter Braun gave an interview to GQ magazine in which he said the singer strives to maintain an innocent persona. "He knows that I hold him to a high standard," Braun said. "He doesn't want to blow it."
And in that same article, Justin himself said that while he's had a beer here and there, he "likes to be in control" of himself, adding, "I keep my guard up a lot, because you know, you can't trust anyone in this business. That's what's sad. You can't trust anybody. I learned the hard way."
Call this another lesson in the School of Hard Knocks, kid.