Backlash: YouTuber PewDiePie, 28, has come under fire after sharing an offensive meme making fun of Demi Lovato’s apparent drug overdose
YouTube’s biggest star has come under fire after sharing an offensive meme making fun of Demi Lovato’s apparent drug overdose.
PewDiePie, 28, has previously earned blacklash for including racist and antisemitic messages in his videos. Earlier this week, PewDiePie, real name Felix Kjellberg, faced criticism once again, this time for posting an insensitive meme related to the 25-year-old singer and her alleged heroin use.
The YouTuber, who is from Gothenburg, Sweden and resides in Brighton, shared a meme that originally shows a nondescript character asking their mother for money.
The character pretends the money will be used to buy a burger but then uses the money to purchase heroin ‘like a boss’.
Other versions of the meme have featured the character duping their mother in order to buy a variety of other items, including One Direction merch, a SpongeBob drum set, and the Communist Manifesto.
In the version shared by PewDiePie, the character’s face is replaced by a photo of Demi, making it look as though the singer, who has been open about her struggles with mental health conditions and addiction, has just procured heroin.
Insensitive: The original meme features a character duping their mother to buy heroin. In the version shared by PewDiePie (pictured), the character is replaced by a photo of Demi
Other Twitter users slammed Felix for his tweet, telling him the meme is ‘not funny’ and deeming the YouTuber ‘officially canceled’.
‘Come on bro, this is making light of something that a lot of humanity struggles with day in and day out, and countless families have been torn apart by it,’ actor and YouTuber Jimmy Wong told him.
‘Offensive humor for the sake of offensiveness isn’t edgy, it’s just lazy and destructive.’
A fan told PewDiePie: ‘Come on Felix, we’ve stayed with you through a l o t, don’t make a joke out of someone struggling with such a terrible addiction.
‘She’s been fighting this for literal years, she went to rehab for this. This is not an okay joke to make. There is no okay joke to make about this.’
PewDiePie eventually deleted his tweet. Even though he shared the meme well after the news of Demi’s reported overdose emerged, he claimed he wasn’t fully aware of the situation when he first posted it.
‘Deleted meme. I didn’t mean anything with it and I didn’t fully know about the situation,’ he tweeted. ‘I realize now it was insensitive, sorry!’
Twitter users, however, were so outraged by Felix’s initial tweet they used a dedicated hashtag, #PewdiepieIsOverParty, to express their dismay.
‘You know, YouTubers would have a lot less to apologize for if they just used their brains once in a while,’ one person wrote.
Message: Even though he shared the meme well after the news of Demi’s reported overdose emerged, PewDiePie claimed he wasn’t fully aware of the situation when he first posted it
Some Twitter users wondered why people were surprised that Felix would make a crass joke given his previous controversies.
Felix has 64.5 million subscribers on his channel, making him the biggest YouTuber on the platform.
Back in February 2017, Disney cut ties with the YouTuber after he featured a man holding a ‘Death to all Jews’ sign in one of his videos.
‘I’m sorry, I didn’t think they would actually do it,’ PewDiePie told his viewers in a clip. ‘I feel partially responsible. It might just be my crude sense of humor, but I think there’s something funny about that.’
Seven months later, in September 2017, Felix, who became famous for playing video games on YouTube, was caught shouting the N-word during a live stream of himself playing the multiplayer online shooting game Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds.
The latest backlash against PewDiePie comes in the wake of reports that Demi suffered an overdose at her Hollywood house on Tuesday.
Fire officials have now released redacted audio of a 911 call that led to Demi’s hospitalization.
The four-and-a-half-minute call does not include details of what led paramedics to transport the singer to a Los Angeles hospital on Tuesday. Reports that Demi had suffered a drug overdose first emerged on TMZ on Tuesday.
Law enforcement sources told the website that she was taken to a hospital in L.A., and that she was treated at home with Narcan, a medication used to reverse opioid overdoses.
Response: Other Twitter users slammed Felix for his tweet, including one person who pointed out the meme is ‘not funny’
Comments: Twitter users were so outraged by Felix’s initial tweet they used a dedicated hashtag, #PewdiepieIsOverParty, to express their dismay
Early reports said Demi appeared to have overdosed on heroin, but TMZ later stated that members of her team didn’t give first responders any information about the substance or substances she might have taken.
Sources close to Demi have denied she was using heroin, The Blast reported. Sources told the website that the incident report indicates that a hospital nurse told authorities the singer had been using methamphetamine prior to the alleged overdose.
A spokesperson for the singer told MailOnline in a statement: ‘Demi is awake and with her family who want to express thanks to everyone for the love, prayers, and support.
‘Some of the information being reported is incorrect and they respectfully ask for privacy and not speculation as her health and recovery is the most important thing right now.’
While most celebrities tend to hide their struggles with drugs and battles with depression, Demi not only acknowledged her issues, she’s shared them with the world.
She has been an open book since she announced in 2010 that she was checking into a rehabilitation center to deal with an eating disorder, self-mutilation and other issues.
Over the next eight years, she became a role model and bona fide pop star, releasing multi-platinum songs and albums that range from playful to serious with lyrical content about her battles with drugs and alcohol.
Demi has chronicled her life and battles throughout the years, from her bisexuality to being bullied as a child to suffering from depression.
She has said she’s used cocaine before interviews and drank alcohol in the morning out of a soda bottle to mask it. That candor has helped her become a role model for young women and men who have faced their own issues.
TWITTER USERS SLAM PEWDIEPIE FOR DEMI LOVATO MEME