Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Stop Making Excuses!

While the BP boycott is an excellent idea, it's time to shift gears to a topic that affects everyone, "Personal Responsibility." Fox news reports this morning, that the Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson said she was "in the gutter" and drunk when she tried to sell access to her former husband, Prince Andrew, for over $750-thousand American dollars.

When the story broke last week, The New York Daily News reported that Ferguson has been living off her daughters trust funds and was caught on tape smoking and slurping a glass of red wine in front of a pile of unpaid bills. She reportedly asked the undercover reporter who was taping her, for a cash advance of $40-thousand dollars, a wire transfer of $723-thousand, and a promise of future commissions in exchange for access to Britain's royal family.

Bottom line? She got caught so she blamed a drinking problem. This is yet another example of celebrity gone wild, blaming a before unheard of illness after being caught in an embarrassing or illegal situation. Sarah Ferguson now has a drinking problem. Jesse James announced he was a sex addict when he got caught cheating on wife Sandra Bullock. David Duchovny claimed a similar ailment after cheating on his wife actress Tea'Leoni. Anytime a celebrity drops to "C" or "D" status, an appearance on Celebrity Rehab gets their name back in the spotlight once again. It makes one sick to hear all of the excuses. What happened to "I screwed up and I'm sorry?"

I'm not saying that drinking problems and sex addictions don't exist. Sadly, they do, but it seems that many of these celebrities never discover their "problem" until they're embarassed by some undercover journalist and that's just sad. Sure, denial is a problem of addiction of any kind. Most people have to hit bottom before deciding to get help, but it seems that more and more celebrities, (and likewise everyday people) are labeling themselves with this problem or that, as a way to avoid the penalties, or to generate sympathy for their irresponsible behavior.

Our culture as a whole has stopped taking responsibility for our actions, and in many cases there seems to be a sense of pride when people are caught on tape doing something disgusting. Sarah Ferguson is just another example of someone who has crossed the line of irresponsibility and is now going on Oprah to generate some sympathy for her cause, which will ultimately mean more money for her pocketbook. I wish Oprah would say to her, "You know, living off of your children's trust fund is not only reprehensible it is a crime." I doubt she will, but it would be appropriate, and it would be responsible journalism. (which I use the word lightly)

It's time we stop glamorizing the lives and addictions of celebrities and we need to stop making excuses when someone we know is caught "sexting" or beating up another on YouTube. We need to start teaching our children that true addictions can be treated long before their bad behavior makes headlines. Maybe then, they'll grow into responsible adults. It's also time to remind them, that this type of behavior is not acceptable and there are consequences when said behavior occurs.

Finally, it's time that our culture reward good behavior and promote the positive things that many people do everyday. Wouldn't it be wonderful if television shows were created where successful kids and adults were featured as they improved their own lives and the world around them? Even though it would be great, it is unlikely to happen. After all, stories like Sarah Ferguson's have shown us that if a show featured kids or adults without some sort of addiction or violent behavior doing something positive, it is very unlikely that anyone would watch.

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