Criminal or just stupid?

Ok, so I’m going to wallow in the gutter for a little while. miley_perez

This story appeared on PopEater.com on Tuesday, and it got me thinking. (one of the thoughts was, “what the heck am I doing on PopEater.com?)

Here’s the deal.  A couple days before this article appeared, Perez Hilton (shudder) posted a picture of Miley Cyrus, 17, on his blog.  She was getting out of a car and appeared to not be wearing any undergarments.  Whether the picture was doctored or not is under speculation, but initial perception was that it was authentic.  Hilton took the picture down later that evening, but not before many people saw the picture, and likely downloaded it themselves.  There now is a controversy brewing – a group of people is calling for the prosecution of Hilton for Child Pornography, which would carry a 10-year prison sentence and a lifetime on the Sexual Predator Registry.

Here’s my problem with all of this.

Setting aside for the moment the fact that Perez Hilton is the King of Slime and should never have been in “business” in the first place, this is what he does.  I suppose, based on the wording of the law, that he could be in trouble for Child Pornography, however, I also believe that with something this serious, an entire situation must be assessed, rather than operating in a vacuum by considering a single action.  Hilton is a scum, yes.  He’s a freak of nature, a creep, arrogant, narcissistic, petulant, and ugly.  But a criminal?  For a single picture which is no different from dozens of others which he has run on his site?  The only difference is that Miss Cyrus is 17 years old, and therefore a minor.  To prosecute him and force him to be listed on the Sexual Predator Registry would simply further dilute the already nearly ineffective List.

And now we come to what I believe is a major issue in this whole sordid situation, and one that very few people are considering, because it is decidedly politically UN-correct.

Miss Cyrus’s behavior.

Yes, Miley Cyrus is, technically, a minor.  She is 17 years old, which makes her a child in the eyes of the law.  I understand that a line must be drawn somewhere in order to define laws.  However, this is where the Grey Area comes in.  When do we consider the behavior of the “victim”?  And I put the word ‘victim’ in quotes for a reason – a woman who is assaulted and raped is a victim.  Miley Cyrus is not a victim.  For years, we have watched her prostitute herself.  Yes, she portrayed the squeaky-clean Hannah Montana on the Disney Channel (and I have to assume that Hannah Montana was squeaky clean, because, honestly, I’ve never even seen an ad for the show.  I have only marketing and merchandise that I see in the stores to go by), but that’s where “squeaky clean” ends.  In her real life, she has been anything but innocent.  Beginning with a questionable photo shoot in Vanity Fair when she was 15, and continuing through the next two years, which saw her living with her 20-year-old boyfriend, lap-dancing in YouTube Videos, and exhibiting frankly questionable taste in clothing when appearing in concert and awards shows, I fail to understand why suddenly this particular photo is an issue.

Why are so many jumping on Mr. Hilton for publishing the photo when Miss Cyrus is out there, daily, stirring the pot and sexing it up at every turn?  Why is nobody holding her responsible for her own behavior?  After all, she is old enough to live on her own, in her own house, drive her own car, own her own line of clothing, and presumably, have some sort of voice in her singing and television career.  Suddenly, she’s an innocent who doesn’t realize that you shouldn’t go undie-less when wearing a skirt and exiting a car in front of the paparazzi?  Really?  As I said before, Perez Hilton is pond scum, but one picture does not make a man (and I use that term loosely) a pedophile.  Especially a picture that he didn’t take – he simply reproduced it on his site… a move which was stupid, careless, boneheaded and morally reprehensible.  But I don’t believe it’s criminal.  There are plenty of things to bury Hilton for.  This is not one of them.

I cannot believe that I’m actually defending Perez Hilton.  I need a shower.

This entry was posted in adults, celebrities, Crime, gossip, paparazzi, perez hilton, Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Criminal or just stupid?

  1. Joy says:

    Dang…This is a hard subject for me. I heard them talking (fighting) about this on The View this morning. I have to say before I begin that I have a very soft spot in my heart for Miley Cyrus. I can’t help it. It’s like Dora. There’s just a soft spot because of the love Trinity had for her and I’ve been following her all these years. I may also well admit right now that I was an Achy Breaky Heart fan back in the 80’s too.

    I also feel this “man” Hilton smells about the way Cruiser did after that day of fun in the mud. I can’t stomach this person. Anyone who makes their living trying to destroy others is like a zit on my keister.

    I also want to say right up front that I kind of think Myley has done pretty well given her celebrity. She’s not like Brittany or Lindsay or some of those girls who were out partying and drinking and drugging. I know a lot of people who lost their virginity at 16 and 17. Some of her clothes are way over the top and yes, if she were my child, I’d do my utmost to change that but really; she’s still just a kid mostly and nobody should have this done to them and it’s not a sin to go commando. Smart no but I don’t feel anyone should be taking shots like this of anyone to begin with. She’s also a musician and the way they make video’s and such is another story so her clothes could be over the top for another reason. I could start saying look at Christina Aguilera or Madonna. They are over the top in this way too. A lot of the “pop” people are.

    But…..given that said, I have to agree with Laura and I’ll soon follow the showering idea. I feel just putrid to side with Hilton on this. I’m almost throwing up in my mouth a little.

    Just for shits and giggles I went to that site and voted and 74% of the people who’ve voted think he should go to jail for this. He won’t. Will he??? I agree with you that this does nothing to help the seriousness of the crime. It almost makes a mockery out of it. I can’t believe I’m defending this pond scum. SEE WHAT YOU DID LAURA!!!

  2. mssc54 says:

    I may take time to make a more lengthy comment later.

    So your main defense of Mr. Perez’s illegal behavior is “this is what he does?” That’s really pitiful.

    Let’s make a list of what else we should let grown men get away with because “that’s just what they do” and “the child is fameous and almost not a child anyway.”

    • Joy says:

      You do make a good point mssc.

    • Laura says:

      No. I’m not saying he should get off because “that’s what he does”. I’m saying that it’s a single photo, taken candidly, of a woman (and she is a woman – demonstrated by all of her actions) getting out of a car. If anyone really wants to make the “pornography” allegations, why did nothing happen to Annie Leibovitz? Those pics she took of Miley were FAR more sexual than this one is alleged to be. Why has nothing happened to that 44-year-old man to whom Cyrus is giving a lap dance? Because in both of those instances, the argument was made that Miley was old enough to make the decision to behave that way.

      Frankly, as in the argument that is made for 20-year-old (and technically still “underage”) soldiers having a beer… a couple of months, even a year, does not make an adult. Behavior does. Miley Cyrus acts like an adult. She owns a home. She owns a car. She manages her own career. She is a child only in the eyes of the law, and when it’s convenient for her. She is not a victim the way that all of those true victims of child pornography are. To prosecute Hilton for this act of insane stupidity is to slap every TRUE victim of child pornography across the face with a steel glove. It also further diminishes the effectiveness of the Sexual Predator List, which counts among its numbers young boys who have been arrested for peeing behind their garage, and young men who have been arrested for “lewd acts” with their consenting girlfriends who happened to be a few months younger. Those people are not pedophiles. They are not threats to society. They are as much victims as are the people the list purports to protect. But those people are marked for life because society has become overzealous in it’s quest to “protect” the children. And by doing so, it puts them more at risk by weakening the tools available.

      IF Hilton is a child pornographer – and I have no evidence that he is – he should be thrown in jail with the most heinous offenders of every stripe and the key should be lost. But this is one photo, taken candidly (or perhaps not so candidly, if Miss Cyrus set it up – she knows very well that the paparazzi follows every move she makes), and posted to a stupid website. One photo does not make ANYONE a child predator. If that were the case, nearly every parent in America would be behind bars.

      What I am saying here is that yes, Hilton is a slime. He should experience backlash for what he does, and he receives it. Not as much as he deserves, but he gets it. But I’m also saying that Cyrus bears responsibility. Every little girl, from the day she can dress herself in a frilly little dress, is told by her mother that you keep your knees TOGETHER when you’re in a dress. You cross your legs, and you pull your skirt over them. When exiting a car, you pivot on your backside so as not to “flash the world”. It’s called common sense and modesty. I have seen precious little from Cyrus since her Montana days.

      • mssc54 says:

        @Laura; please DO NOT take my somewhat courteous response as I agree with you in the slightest way.

        “But I’m also saying that Cyrus bears responsibility.”

        Are you friggn kidding me? She is SIXTEEN YEARS OLD!

        “She is a child only in the eyes of the law, and when it’s convenient for her.”

        Well let’s not let the LAW get in the way here. Heck she has lots and lots of money and can do things that you and I can only dream of. She must be an adult and suffer the consequences of her SIXTEEN YEAR OLD MIND!

        Your entire first paragraph sounds like a third grader who gets into trouble in school complaining to the teacher that just because they got caught doing something wrong… well other kids have done much worse so give me a break. Unbelieveable.

        “One photo does not make ANYONE a child predator. If that were the case, nearly every parent in America would be behind bars.”

        OMG! Now you are trying to compare mothers and/or fathers who take pictures of their (prepubesant) children getting a bath or such (IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR OWN HOME) to an unrelated professional person of the opposite sex taking photos of a fully (physically) developed young person with the hopes of SELLING THEM TO THE HIGHEST BIDDER?! Unbelieveable.

        “But I’m also saying that Cyrus bears responsibility.”

        Why don’t you just come out and say: That woman who dresses like a slut, goes to bars, smokes pot and picks guys up all the time… Well just because she said no to that one guy she deserved what she got anyway. After all she does bear some responsibility.

  3. SKL says:

    I have to disagree here. Every pornographer who uses the photo of a “consenting” underage person could get away with it if “this is what he does” were a defense. Most of the time these kids are intentionally posing for the picture and it’s still a crime. Now if I understand correctly, the photo Hilton was using was not even intentionally posed for. I have not read up on this, but if I read you right, she was getting out of the car and had a momentary wardrobe malfunction, which could (and does) happen to all of us. Should she have been wearing undies? I really think that’s between her and her mama. Lots of people don’t wear undies and it’s not my business as long as they have something on that intends to cover the important parts.

    Hilton knows what kiddy porn is and he had to know that was a crime. He is known for pushing his luck and this time he pushed it too far. She’s a minor. If she was over 18, I might agree with you – “this is what he does” – though it’s still scummy and I’m actually still not sure that would be legal. But to show a minor’s privates on the internet is illegal. People get in trouble for photographing their own toddlers in the bathtub, for pete’s sake. Are we to believe that a man whose life is the Internet doesn’t know better? Maybe he’s about to get his comeuppance.

    What really bugs me about him isn’t his sliminess. It’s his popularity. Why does anyone visit his rotten site? Why does anyone pay him to do anything, ask him his opinion on anything, or give a crap what he says or does? What does this say about our society? That’s very disturbing to me.

    • Joy says:

      I understand where you’re coming from and yes, I agree that he really pushes things too far. I don’t feel he’s a pedophile though but what does concern me is the people who are, get these pics from these kinds of sites. I don’t ever read his site or go to it so I’m not really sure how he makes his living. I can’t even imagine people who go to sites like this and take this kind of stuff as truth.

      • SKL says:

        I’m not saying he’s a pedophile, but you don’t have to be a pedophile to break the child pornography laws.

        Let me put it another way. OK, my niece is 17. Do I want a man who is known to set up, take, and publish these kinds of photos to be allowed to freely run around my niece’s neighborhood with his camera? No! He needs a deterrent just like anyone else who would do such a thing.

        I’m not condoning Miley’s behavior, but to me, that isn’t the point. The crime of creating and/or publishing child porn does not have anything to do with whether or not the minors photographed behaved like children or adults in their daily lives. If it did, the law would be meaningless, because the kids posing for these photos are a lot more worldly than I was at 18. Also, what about child prostitution or molestation or incest? Is it “not a crime” if the child, regardless of age, does some of the things adults do? If a 15-year-old has lost her virginity, is it OK for a man (of any age) to sexually use her because she’s really not a child?

        While I do not condone Miley’s behavior, I do not agree that just because she does “adult” things, she should be seen as an adult. That she makes poor choices like some young adults, to me, means that she is immature, not grown-up. When/if you catch your child with cigarettes, booze, or condoms, do you decide that he’s now an adult, since he has been doing things only adults are supposed to do? Does having lots of money and assets make someone an adult? I don’t think so. I think that when I was 17, I was a lot more like an adult than Miley, and I didn’t do / have any of those things. I was a college student and I made mostly responsible choices. (And I wore underwear. And maybe that’s why nobody was trying to catch me in a compromising photograph.) I do not see Miley as an adult. I see her as a kid who is not making the most of her childhood.

        I think this raises the question of what the purpose of the law against child pornography is. Is it to keep children innocent, to keep them from being exploited (innocently or not), to keep adults from getting off on the idea of exploiting kids, or what?

        And the other question is, why isn’t adult porn illegal, or at least, the publishing of compromising photos that were not authorized by the person photographed? There should be some legal protection against such a thing. Could they do that to me or you and get away with it? That’s horrible.

  4. Ellen says:

    I have been having trouble with Miss Miley Cyrus for a long time. She act if she is an adult and everybody is treating as an adult. She dresses way over the top. She suppose to be some kind of role model for young girl. I do not get it that people accept this. Madonna etc. are older, not role model either, but Miley is a teenager and she should dress like a teenager and not as someone who wants to sell her body.
    I have only seen that weirdo guy Hilton one time, and he is a horrible hypocrite, that people like him gets attention and earn money of it, is to me unbelievable. Maybe he needs to “sit” for a year, to prevent others copying his scum behavior. I need a shower too 🙂

  5. Damon says:

    Hilton may be slime, but not a pedophile. I think this highlights the glaring inconsistencies that occur in our legal system due to the law of unintended consequences. Clearly our views on privacy and sexuality are not complete; they are in obvious contradiction. I don’t like paparazzi and I value privacy, so this is by no means in their defense. However, it is quite inconsistent to allow a “minor” to pursue a career or to profit from being a sex symbol (by definition a sex symbol creates sex appeal) and to try to then prosecute someone for distributing pictures of this same “minor” in public. And let’s not kid ourselves, Miley Cyrus is a sex symbol. There have been several graphic sex tapes of various celebrities, with varying levels of consent attributed, that have been circulated. I am not defending this either. But is it consistent as a society to state that it is ok to distribute a graphic sex tape of a person made the day she turned 18, but that a candid picture taken the day before should result in the distributor being prosecuted as if he were distributing graphic sexual pictures of grade school children? These are hardly on the same level. Not liking Hilton is not a justification for us as a society to betray our values. YES he is slime, but that’s not illegal. He didn’t climb a ladder to her window and take a picture of her in private. Disrespecting the true victims of sexual crimes by destroying the institutions and tools we created to fight those crimes in order to appease our conscience is a travesty of justice. Should we be willing to accept that kind of compromise in our judicial system? Is it really ok to say that this is the best we can do when the consequences for these glaring inconsistencies is someone paying 10 years and a lifetime on the Sexual Predator Registry?

    Here’s what I say it is:

    People hate to think. Its not that people don’t know how, they just confuse thinking with feeling. Thinking is hard, requires focus, effort and has unintended consequences like necessitating a change in core values. Isn’t it a lot easier to just…burn a witch? After all, if we just burn a witch then at least we’ve done something. We’re on the side of good, clearing the world of evil. Witches are bad and they should have known they had it coming to them sooner or later. No need to think anymore about it, we’ve taken action and, now with that whole witch thing under control, we can apathetically return to our comfortable lives of luxury with pacified consciences. And we get to feel important and enjoy a sense of purpose. And all we had to do was not think, not question, rationalize an emotional reaction and sacrifice the integrity of the Sexual Predator Registry. At least it was easy. We like easy.

    Now I am not saying I have a solution. But I will say that we need to talk. A lot. We’ve really been winging it for too long. So why don’t we all (everyone) have a healthy discussion about the real issues: sexuality and responsibility.

  6. SKL says:

    I will also say that the issue here shouldn’t be whether or not the sex crime registries are designed well. If that’s a problem (and I’ve heard many stories to indicate it is), fix that. There are people on the registries who truly had no intent to harm or exploit anyone or commit a crime. People a lot more innocent than Hilton. Hilton intentionally did this knowing it was exploitative and mean, and I also believe he knew it was illegal. While many of you say we should not compare Hilton to a pedophile, I say it’s even worse to compare Hilton to boys who peed behind their own garage.

    I also don’t believe that being listed on the sex registry would make a difference to Hilton. He’s already well-known as being a slime, so why would being listed on a slime list make a difference? If anything it will probably earn him more hits at his disgusting site and more paid interviews.

    Hilton should NOT be the poster boy for sex crime registry reform. How that could possibly further reform is beyond me.

  7. Nikki says:

    I like Miley Cyrus. She’s made a name for herself without it being negative. She is growing up, we have to remember that. I have seen far worst dressed girls walking around my town. Girls that age, some, dress this way. It doesn’t mean it’s right, I would never ever allow my daughter, if I had one, to dress that like.

    I have to admit, some of the things Perez Hilton are funny. But a lot of the things he says are untrue, and when you start lying about people is when you lose my respect for you. Especially when he goes after a lot of people that take themselves very seriously. How people gets famous for this kind of stuff is beyond me.

    Having said all that. I do not think he should go to prison for 10 years. That seems a little ridiculous to me. He should pay a price, he should be help accountable. She IS 17! I just don’t think the offense fits the crime. Undergarments or not.

  8. Joy Rehnee says:

    Sex sells! They both know it, and in my opinion they are both wrong, but you can bet neither one would cop to it. I want to be on the side of Ms. Cyrus, because her father is from from my “neck of the woods”, and I liked him despite the weird ponytail. Miley is a darling girl, but I think marketing her in a way that will ensure fame and fortune will be her downfall one day. Her head is now bigger than her voice. She didn’t get to be a little girl for very long, which I find sad. And her girl parts are out there for old men and other perverts to look at. Not what I would want for myself, or my daughter.

    Obviously, she knows what can happen to a famous girl exiting a limo, sans panties! And that pig of a man knows how old she is. I definitely think that he should be punished somehow, but agree that putting him on a list waters down the real and desperate reason we have such a list.

    Hopefully, Ms Cyrus will have learned her lesson, suffer some embarrassment that money can’t erase, and put on some undergarments in the future. They are called private parts for a good reason!

  9. Joy Rehnee says:

    OK, I probably wouldn’t be a very good news reporter, because I just now finished reading the article, after I blurted out my opinion. Don’t get me wrong, I have a soft spot for this girl. She’s as cute as a bug’s ear, has a good voice and catchy tunes. I’m sure I would have a bit of an ego too, if I were in her shoes. Like it or not though, she is a role model for her little sister and lots of other girls, so I just hopes she takes that job seriously.

    So that idiot P.H. is saying he made it up, which is almost worse. I think he used to be funny, but his “snarkiness” has turned to downright meanness in my view. He is the one who really needs to be tamed!!!

  10. lucy says:

    This is an interesting post. Actually Perez has come out loud and clear against these allegations: Miley is wearing underwear in the picture… its just the angel the picture was taken at. I agree Lauren who said that the Annie Leibovitz pictures are a lot worse than anything Perez has ever posted.

    That being said, I don’t necessarily agree with him posting the picture on his website, but I don’t think its criminal and I dont think he should go to jail.

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