my Snark

Pop Culture . . . whatever

A Short history of stage-moms

Every once in a while you will read a post that just makes you say, WOW.  from SedonaCowboy @

I find it amusing that posters like Kim, Nicole and Jenny are telling the bloggers on here to mind their own business and stop criticizing Jon and Kate. I find this amusing because you, and people like you, fail to remember that Jon and Kate Gosselin are a couple who chose to put themselves and their children in the public eye by being on TV. What you also fail to remember is that anyone who chooses to place themselves in the public eye; whether it be a politician, a celebrity or a TV family like the Gosselins; is going to be open to both praise as well as criticism. What is particularly sad about this case, however, is that the children did not choose to be in the public eye, they were placed there by their parents.

As far as it being ridiculous to judge Kate, or that Kate or any mother, would use her children for fame I have three words: Rose Thompson Hovick. In case you do not know who she was, she was the mother of actress June Havoc and her sister famed burlesque queen and author Gypsy Rose Lee, who Rose forced into stripping for a living at age 16. She was the basis for the character Mama Rose in the musical Gypsy and known as the ultimate stage mother. Next we have Lilian Rita Dolliver Coogan. If you don’t know who she was, she was the mother of actor Jackie Coogan, best known as Uncle Fester on the Addams Family. As a child actor Coogan earned in excess of $4 million. All of his earnings were spent by his mother. This resulted in the Coogan Law being enacted in California. These are just two examples of how a mother can exploit their children for either fame, fortune or both. I think these two examples succinctly explain what a mother is capable of and why people feel they can judge someone like Kate.

As far as being on TV, no one is saying they should not have a show. I agree with Jenny that, “the fact that they were offered a T.V show with financial support is a blessing.” No one is saying they do not deserve perks either for having multiples or for being on TV. Celebrities get perks all the time, such as the actress who walks down the red carpet in the latest Versace creation which was given to her for wearing it or who stays at the best hotel in town and has a limo at their disposal because they are a guest on a talk show for fifteen minutes. No one is saying that Kate should not do the lecture circuit either, I am sure she is an inspiration to a lot of people.

Jackie Coogan aka "Uncle Fester"

What the bloggers who are complaining are saying is that the Gosselins have made having multiples into a career. Neither Jon nor Kate have a real job. In fact Jon doesn’t work at all and Kate travels the country telling people how hard it is raising multiples while the kids stay at home in their multi million dollar home with the nanny and private chef. If Cornelius and Sophia Johnson Vanderbilt had traveled the country lecturing on how hard it was to raise more than a dozen children people would have laughed and they would have come under very strong criticism. Since it is Kate Gosselin who is traveling, however, she should be applauded.

While my analogy may seem a bit extreme it really isn’t if you think about it. Cornelius and Sophia Johnson Vanderbilt had multiple million dollar homes. Jon and Kate Gosselin have multiple million dollar homes. Sophia Johnson Vanderbilt was able to travel on shopping expeditions while her husband stayed in New York and worked. Kate Gosselin is able to travel around on shopping expeditions while Jon stays at home and works. Oh wait, that’s right, Jon doesn’t work He goes out drinking with college co-eds while Kate is out of town. (I refer to Kate’s designer wedding dress she acquired in one of New York’s top salons.) Cornelius and Sophia Johnson Vanderbilt had servants to take care of their children. Jon and Kate Gosselin have servants to take care of their children.

Now that I have covered the similarities I will address the differences. Cornelius Vanderbilt was the wealthiest man in the world during his life-time, Jon Gosselin certainly is not. Cornelius Vanderbilt worked to earn his fortune from the time he was 12 until the day he died. Kate Gosselin had twins and sextuplets. Cornelius and Sophia Johnson Vanderbilt paid for their mansions out of the money he earned. Jon and Kate Gosselin were given their mansions as publicity stunts. Finally, Cornelius and Sophia Johnson Vanderbilt were philanthropists who established, among other things, Vanderbilt Library and Vanderbilt University. Kate Gosselin travels the country on speaking engagements, telling how hard it is to raise 8 kids while her kids stay at home with the servants. For doing this, she and accepts “love offerings” from people who can not afford it.

Speaking of the homes that were given to the Gosselins, let’s talk about the perks the Gosselins receive. No one on here is saying that families like the Gosselins who have multiples don’t deserve perks like diapers, clothing, bottles and formula and even a car. Any family who has just had multiple are going to be in need of help and most people would applaud corporations for donating much needed items. What the bloggers here are complaining about is where should the perks end? Does a family deserve not one but two mullion dollar homes just because they have 8 kids? Should a woman receive a $10k plus wedding gown from one of the top salons in the country for a renewal ceremony? Should a couple receive a free trip to Hawaii to renew their vows? According to US Census Statistics there are 1,169,000 families in the US with seven or more children. How many of these families were given their own TV show, a free mini-van, two multimillion dollar homes, a book deal, a personal chef, nanny and housekeeper, a trip to Hawaii, a designer wedding dress and a trip to Disneyworld and all for no reason other than the fact there are seven or more children? I can only name one. This is what the bloggers are complaining about.

Finally, you are all right, none of us know the Gosselins personally. What we do know, and comment on, is what we see on TV. What is ironic, however, is you all seem to know a lot about us and our lives. You say we are all idiots, that we neglect our children to be on line constantly, that our lives are so messed up we should be trying to make sense of them before we criticize a TV show, we don’t know what it is like having numerous children and that we can’t handle strong women.

I, for one, am retired and had six children, all of whom are grown and out of the house. I don’t know where you got the idea that I am constantly on line and neglecting my kids. As far as being an idiot goes, I have a master’s degree from an Ivy League school and I have been complimented on here for the eloquence of my posts so I am not quite sure where you got the idea that I am an idiot. Personally, if I were you, I would take a look at my posts with their profanity, misspellings and lack of grammar before calling people idiots. Finally I have a very rich, full and rewarding life so I don’t know where you got the idea my life was messed up.

Yes you are correct; we all could learn a thing or two from Kate. I know I certainly have. I have learned that if you have multiples you will never have to work again. People will give you things like multi-million dollar homes, free trips and designer clothes. You will have a household staff that you do not need to pay for and you will be given a TV show. Was that the lesson you had in mind?

Gypsy Rose Lee site


May 8, 2009 - Posted by | Gosselin, Gossip, Greed, Reality TV | , ,

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