Opinion 
By James Pavel 

 Leather jackets, spiked hair and renegade attitudes enraged with anarchy have been popularized and exploited by pop music and there is no greater criminal than Rihanna. 

 These listed attributes certainly don’t define rebellion culture in totality, but they were once reserved for a certain portion of society. These looks and styles have been adopted by this mega-star as her own, as if she is allowed to lay claim to the foundations of underground punk music, or contributions to an ideal that was defined by its anarchist sounds, concepts and movements. 

 The attitude of Rihanna is of course contrived, but that is no matter to Rihanna because she is, after all, an entertainer. But in today’s pop-obsessed world, the entertainment does not stop at the music. It’s about the entire life and personality of an individual, which is why Rihanna is covered in random tattoos to further enhance and validate an image that she stole from the former cellars of society. 

 For example, in one of Rihanna’s more recent music videos, “Diamonds,” she sports a half-shaved head, dyed black hair and countless tattoos. She is also seen inhaling and exhaling what can only be assumed to be marijuana smoke. It is typical music video behaviour for a rapper, but for a pop star, it was unseen and unthought of until now. 

 To smoke weed is to be bad, and being bad is what pop culture has determined to be in “in” at the moment. 

 Pop music has slowly chipped away at original rebellion culture, but never has it unleashed a hatchet the size of what Rihanna in particular has managed to swing into it. 

 You can no longer truly be bad when Rihanna, one of the most successful creators of pop music over the past decade, completely embodies everything that it contains, except of course, validity. 

 It’s a pseudo-production that is beyond just the minds of this beautiful starlet. It’s an entire recording company grooming their star to capture cigarettes, motorcycles and leather jackets all in one glance. 

 It’s the style of the moment and no one can be blamed for following a hot, hot trend. But pop culture has done such a tremendous job of inhaling every breath of everything original that it has now successfully consumed one of the few cultures that seemed as though it could never die. 

 Pop stars behave like rock stars in every extent, except where it counts. Rihanna’s music is still trendy, fun-in-the-sun bubblegum pop wrapped in sexuality, but she also opts to subscribe to the rock-star attitude as if she is a member of Led Zeppelin. 

 “You’re a rock star” is a statement now loaded with irony, as in today’s world, everyone’s a rock star. Tattoos glimmering with intensity and outfits once fitted for outlaws dominate the bars and the downtown streets because although everyone wishes to be an individual, we are all now beginning to look painfully similar. 

 It’s a brigade of pseudo-rock stars that no one has ever heard of, and there is no one to laugh at the absurdity because we are all painfully in on the ploy. 

 Rihanna is not a villain. She is just one of the most outstanding posers of a fringe culture that pop culture has strained with all of its might. 

 Original rebellion culture is dead. Although Rihanna may not be the sole killer, she is certainly deserving of assault charges for the death of a once-exclusive society. 

 

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