Monday, June 04, 2007

are you freakin kidding me?

It's early and I had a late night, so this will be short and sweet. There's nothing in the news this morning about Darfur or Louisiana. Nothing on the disgusting length of time Native land treaty hearings are currently taking, nothing on how psychotic Mario Dumont is behaving.

There is mention about the polar ice-caps, and the upcoming G8 summit where Stephen Harper has offered to act as a "broker" to make a deal between nations to cut greenhouse gases. He's a little late to the game and is quite possibly a worse choice as a mediator on anything including Don Cherry, so it doesn't surprise me that other countries are skeptical. Also, I think we did agree on something, and there were a bunch of countries who signed the agreement at the time, I'm thinking the name of it started with a K.....who remembers?

All of this pales in comparison, naturally, to the fact that Paris Hilton has decided to do this "the right way". Kids, here's a lesson fer ya: if you're going to do it the right way, don't drink and drive at all. Know why? You might kill someone including, but not limited to yourself. The fact that Paris Hilton has a choice at all about whether or not to go to jail is a testament to our predatory and yet self-righteous celebrity worship. We complain that she and her ilk are popular, and then gobble it up when some wrong-doing takes place with them. Most of us don't have a choice. She is getting more publicity now based on even less accomplishment than she was previously famous for and her decision to act as though she is going to a regular jail like everyone else goes to for similar crimes with no special treatment etc. is a tribute to how willing we are to defer our own dignity to those we feel are somehow larger than us.

Most of us don't have a choice. We can be arrested and place in confinement for possession of substances not approved of by society at large. We can be fined for parking illegally, smoking indoors and speeding and we don't get to choose how to amend these wrongs against society. Paris is "choosing" to serve her time the "right way" after endangering herself and others driving drunk and then not even having the decency to exit the car like a porn star when pulled over.

I choose to ask for 24hr metros to offer safer ways home to those who are drinking or with friends who are drinking. I choose to demand more sympathy from bar owners who don't support their servers cutting off drunk customers and offering taxis. I choose to insist that more highway checks are done at closing time between this island and the suburbs where many bored yuppies drive in from to get a laugh or two on the weekend. I choose to demand that hotels offer pick-up services for intoxicated guests who might otherwise not get back to their hotels and indeed have even more trouble reading the French road-signs here when drunk.

Paris chose to get liquored and get behind the wheel. It is not newsworthy to mention that she is now "choosing" to accept punishment when she was caught. And it's not totally clear to me why she was so surprised that she was caught since she insists on so much publicity and attention. Attention from everyone except the police? Oh Paris, whatever will we do with you?

There was actual news this morning, a proposal for a national umbilical cord blood bank, a toddler who fell to it's death, a space station on Cape Breton (oh my god, high tech employment exactly where it's needed!) but these stories were below the fold (in the sidebar where I read them). They were not "front page headlines". They were closer to the diversions section than they needed to be.

Paris, you don't care about me and I certainly don't care about you. But I know in three weeks a similar story will inspire me to wax poetic on celebrity culture as you are asked "how was it?" and "were you afraid?". Shall we dispense with it please? Will you simply go home and see your friends and family just like anyone who gets out of jail does? Will you hold another press conference to tell all about the "conditions" you were put under? Please consider quiet contemplation or a drink and a cab-ride home.

For all our sakes.

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