Sure, I'd had a drink or two in a place that frowns on pop music oozing from its jukebox. But that’s no reason to call into question the clarity with which I suddenly realized Sweetwater Union High School board member John McCann is a lot like singer Justin Bieber.
For years the young heartthrob has been maligned as a no-talent, self-entitled puppet absent substance and depth. So has Bieber.
Increasingly both are gaining notoriety for their seemingly erratic behavior.
Lately the teenager has been in the news because he is said to have been smoking dope in hotel rooms, allegedly driving recklessly through residential neighborhoods and wearing his pants down to his ankles while leaving his shirt behind in London nightclubs.
But Beliebers — as the pop star’s squeally and occasionally hysterical supporters are called — will tell you that detractors don’t appreciate Justin’s genius and soul. They’re just haters. Stupid, stupid haters.
McCanniacs might say the same thing.
Even though John has drawn attention to himself for issues other then governing a school district — he filed a temporary restraining order against a parent for allegedly threatening him, he videotaped a critical public during a school board meeting, he chastised a teacher for not respecting his service in the military, and on Monday he walked out of a school board meeting to file a police report claiming theft of a 2010 campaign sign — John’s supporters will tell you he’s not a bad guy and the people who hate him will find any reason to criticize him.
McCanniacs might be right. The man can be engaging and occasionally charming. But he also tends to shoot himself in the foot.
Going back to his days on the Chula Vista City Council, McCann’s occasionally odd tantrums are noteworthy. The times he publicly scolded his council colleagues while on the dais come to mind, as does his characterization of Councilman Rudy Ramirez as unpatriotic for perceived slights that were never fully understood.
If McCann has done anything good in his time as an elected, those accomplishments are overshadowed by his sometimes puzzling behavior.
But in the end maybe that doesn’t matter. Like Bieber, John still has an adoring fan base (don’t forget an effort to recall McCann last year failed).
Maybe like the Canadian singer, McCann really is an unappreciated genius and the rest of us are just stupid, stupid haters.
Bieber is in San Diego tomorrow for a concert. I’m hoping somehow McCann can get on stage and remind the public about his military service, while also threatening to arrest anyone who illegally videotapes the concert on their smartphone. That’s stealing, you know.
If that happened, that would make a McCanniac out of me. Beliebe me.