Here’s the thing: Is it THAT bad?

I mean, he looks kind of dumb, but is it that much dumber than usual? His pants stayed up, and the crotch fabric didn’t appear to be getting frisky with his kneecaps. His leather shirt is at least… ventilated in a sporty-themed way. And the hat… yeah, that’s a pretty ugly Miami Heat hat, and presumably he bought it, or at the very least agreed to wear it in place of a more standard one. Can’t defend that. Especially because there is no way he is a lifelong, wear-it-at-any-cost Miami Heat fan. He is more of a Free Tickets To Fancy Things fan, judging by his concurrent sudden and be-hatted interest in the L.A. Kings’ game seven clash against the Sharks last week.

But I think this is actually not the worst thing he’s worn lately, and the reason he’s catching so much flack for it is this: Nothing Justin Bieber can do makes him look any less ridiculous. He’s in permatwerp mode. And moaning about getting no artistic respect — everyone knows the first rule of PR is to show grace and good humor and engage in a little self-deprecation in the face of the boo birds. I am not sure how to fix this; it might not be a fixable problem, short of taking himself to an adventure yurt in deepest Siberia for six months and returning with a clean fashion slate, totally new hair, and no trucker hats that make his forehead look half a foot long. Or, to borrow from Parks & Rec: Rethink. Yo. Self.

[Photos: Fame/Flynet]