I'm not sure what the lesson to be drawn from this is except that religion has grown rather weak in Europe and many teenagers have no idea what Islam is.
Anne Kat, a Norwegian comedy show named after Anne Katrine Hærland, a standup comedian who is not exactly a fan of religion, had a bit where two Muslim-looking men offered Justin Bieber concert tickets in exchange for converting to Islam. As with most shows that claim to use non-actors, there is no way to know what is real and what is staged. But we might as well take it at face value.
Tuesday night the Norwegian TV channel TVNorge (TV Norway) broadcasted an episode of the humor show «AnneKat», where girls in Oslo got to participate in a contest to win tickets to a Justin Bieber concert.
The girls had to remove all makeup, put on a hijab and read something which allegedly was an Islamic creed, in Arabic. They also had to read out loud an Arabic text about Justin Bieber being unclean and probably gay.
"We wanted to find out how far Norwegian beliebers are willing to go for tickets to one of the concerts", tvshow host AnneKat Hærland said while introducing the episode.
Bishop Halvor Nordhaug, from the Norwegian Lutheran Church, thinks the episode testifies to Hærlands’s lack of understanding of how much faith means for a lot of people. "This is an example of an idea where irony and lack of respect turns into something tragic."
Nordhaug is critical of the episode, which he believes creates an impression that Justin Bieber is more important than faith, and that people are willing to change religion for a concert ticket.
But the real problem is that people indeed are.
Even if this was staged, there are plenty of people in the West to whom Christianity or Judaism means nothing at all. They have been fed the idea that all religions are basically the same. So why not trade one for the other?