Wednesday, June 13, 2007

On Paris Hilton, "Celebrity Justice," and Irony

Lots of people have complained about the special treatment given to Paris Hilton, thanks to the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department. Before being sent to jail, Paris seemed resigned to the fact that she would have to spend 23 days in a cell:

"I'm really scared but I'm ready to do this. And I hope that I'm an example to other young people."

She presumably meant taking responsibility for your own actions or misdeeds, not actually going to jail.

There was a great September 2000 article in Vanity Fair about the young Hilton sisters, Kathy their goofy misguided mother, and the general sense of Club Kid malaise that permerates their lives. In the story there was a particularly fascinating and ironic scene about "celebrity justice."

"Well, just because you're a celebrity doesn't mean you shouldn't get in trouble if you do something," Paris says.

Nicky laughs.

"Oh, yeah, celebrities think that all the time," Kathy says quickly.

"You keep interrupting me," Paris tells her mother.

There's a long silence.

Nicky laughs again, dryly and somewhat mysteriously.

"There are some people, I guess," continues Paris, "who feel they can get away with anything—"

"This is just so ironic," scoffs Nicky.

Kathy giggles nervously. "We were having this conversation last night," she says.

No one says anything for a while. The silence is deafening.

I say, "Your eyes are so blue, Paris."

"Yeah," says Paris. "They're contacts."

Nicky says, "Mine are real."

I think it's quite telling that, when the judge re-ordered her back in jail after being prematuely released by the Sheriff, Paris shrieked the following:

"It's not right! . . . Mom!"

To quote Nicky Hilton: This is just so ironic.

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