When the White House thought up a plan to respond to any petition on its “We The People” site that reaches a certain number of signatures, it clearly was not thinking about how annoying the Internet would be about it. That is why the White House must now respond to a petition to “Deport Justin Bieber and revoke his green card.”
The petition was in response to Bieber’s arrest last week on various charges, including driving under the influence. He also faces an assault charge in Canada, for which he turned himself in on Thursday.
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“We the people of the United States feel that we are being wrongly represented in the world of pop culture,” the petition says. “We would like to see the dangerous, reckless, destructive, and drug abusing, Justin Bieber deported and his green card revoked. He is not only threatening the safety of our people but he is also a terrible influence on our nations youth. We the people would like to remove Justin Bieber from our society.”
It got over 100,000 signatures — the threshold any petition must reach before the White House responds. A spokesman has confirmed that there will, in fact, be an official response.
The “We The People” petitions are a prime target for internet trolls, to the point where the White House started to get annoyed and raised the threshold from 25,000 to 100,000 last January. Among the more ridiculous petitions were those to “Establish new legal system of motorcycle riding ‘Judges’ who serve as police, judge, jury, and executioner all in one,” and to “Peacefully grant the planet of Alderaan to withdraw from the Galactic Empire and create its own new government.”
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Before they changed the parameters, though, the White House was forced to respond to another Star Wars-themed petition for the government to ”Secure resources and funding, and begin construction of a Death Star by 2016.”
Paul Shawcross, Chief of the Science and Space branch of the OMB, responded, explaining that the White House will not be building a Death Star for budget reasons, because “the Administration does not support blowing up planets,” and, even if it did, “Why would we spend countless taxpayer dollars on a Death Star with a fundamental flaw that can be exploited by a one-man starship?”
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