It's only a joke: April Fool's and Justin Bieber's pregnancy goof

Category:  Opinions
Thursday, April 11th, 2019 at 8:31 AM

For many people, April Fool’s Day is a moment of laughter and pranks. Many were pranked this year, but is it as lighthearted as some would portray it? 

April Fool’s Day first became popular around the 1700s in England. The actual origin is still a mystery. However, one speculation is that during 1563, when France changed its calendars from Julian to Gregorian, and because of slow communication, many still used the Julian calendar, which had the new year at the end of March. These people joked about for years.

It is one of the few holidays that is celebrated worldwide. Scotland even has a specific name for it: “Hunt-the-Gowk-Day”, (Gowk refers to a fool). It lasts two days as well. Iranians have called it the “Lie of the Thirteenth,” which is celebrated on Sizdah Be-dar, the first and second of April.

Unfortunately, even though the holiday was created for laughter, many get offended over certain jokes which caused April Fool’s Day to be looked down upon. 

In recent news, Justin Bieber played a prank on Twitter with pictures showing his wife pregnant. Later that day, he posted another picture with a sonogram and a clearly fake dog picture in it. Many took offense to this because of couples who have had infertility problems or miscarriages.  Even though he believed it was just a harmless joke, he publicly apologized for the post.

I do not believe what he did was particularly offensive. He meant no harm by it and just wanted to make a few people laugh. I feel if you do not like a joke, then you should just ignore it, especially on April Fool’s Day. 

People have different views on pranks. For instance, if I am friends with someone who makes a disability joke, I will not get offended. I know that person does not mean it, nor is that person serious. On the other hand, another disabled person would get very offended over hearing a disability joke, regardless of who says it.

Does that mean April Fool’s Day should have rules? Would that even be a holiday anymore? I think the best way to keep from offending someone is to know your audience before even attempting a prank. That way, you know they will not get offended. 

Beau Bruneau | voices.spectator@gmail.com

Tags: april fools

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