Billie Joe Armstrong’s Breakdown: ‘He’ll Be More Popular Than Ever,’ Says HLN Host Jane Velez-Mitchell (VIDEO)

Cory Lopez | September 27, 2012 - 5:52 pm

Before checking into treatment for substance abuse, Billie Joe Armstrong’s obscenity-laced, on-stage breakdown reaped quite a bit of backlash.

While wrapping up at the iHeartRadio Music Festival in Las Vegas on Sept. 21, the Green Day frontman unraveled into a profane rant as he complained the band’s set was being cut short. “One minute left, one minute f***ing left,” he exclaimed. “You’re gonna give me f***ing one minute? … I’m not f***ing Justin Bieber, you f***!” The singer then smashed his guitar on the ground before storming off the stage.

“It was over the line,” said HLN host Jane Velez-Mitchell, after addressing questions in Celebuzz’s #AskJane video feature. “He had the meltdown, well, maybe not of the century, but it was pretty good, or bad, depending on your viewpoint”

The band soon released a statement to apologize for the incident, insisting their gig was not cut off by concert promoters and announcing Armstrong had headed to rehab.

So as the storm settles, can the public forgive Armstrong for his over-the-top rant?

“Of course,” said Velez-Mitchell. But that forgiveness is dependent on one factor: “If he sticks with treatment [and] if he comes out sober,” she explained.

Though the headline-hitting breakdown is still fresh on the public’s mind, the repercussions can be tamed.

“They say in recovery — and I’m a recovering alcoholic with 17 years of sobriety — that there’s no mess you can’t clean up,” Velez-Mitchell reasoned. “Maybe murder is a mess you can’t clean up. But this certainly is a mess that he can clean up”

How can Armstrong go about that?

“When he comes out of his treatment, he needs to stay sober and he needs to acknowledge that he crossed the line and did something that is very self-destructive and obnoxious,” Velez-Mitchell said.

And that admission of guilt is Armstrong’s cure-all, according to Velez-Mitchell.

“Everybody in America loves somebody who acknowledges when they’ve made a mistake,” she said. “He didn’t hurt anyone. He just was full of rage. There’s a huge connection between addiction and rage. [But] the public will forgive him [and] he will be more popular than ever.”

Do you think Armstrong will bounce back from this? Sound off in the comments.

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