A recent tragedy has occurred in the lives of many Americans, one that has rivaled the death of Princess Di, the assassination of President Kennedy, and all the lives loss in the combination of every war we as an American nation have ever fought in since the first settlers landed on this continent. What am I talking about? What could possibly be so important? What could possibly be so life-altering, so impacting on the lives of us as a culture? Well, the death of Anna Nicole Smith, of course. What? You don’t agree? Well you’re obviously not working for any network television, or cable broadcast company or radio station in America, because from the amount of media coverage her death has been given, I was certainly fooled into thinking that it was.
For those of you living under a rock, Ms. Smith was a plus-sized model, turned millionaire widow, turned reality show star, turned media roadkill, turned corpse. Now don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against Anna Nicole, neither in life nor in death. She was, from what I could see, a troubled young woman who was seeking nothing but love from people. Why this is so? I couldn’t say. But what I do know is that she was a b-list actress at best. Even with the advent of her reality show, her career was little more than a flash-in-the-pan as far as Hollywood was concerned. Her dramatic weight loss was a matter of some speculation around the rumor mill for a time, but most intelligent people knew that it wasn’t her highly publicized endorsement product that was responsible for her new body and they quickly grew bored with the talk. It was her marriage to millionaire, Howard Marshall that had really earned her notoriety, or should I say the money attached to her—at the time—nearly dead and soon afterwards fully dead—elderly husband. But even then it was the money, that 400 plus million dollar jackpot that had everyone talking, not really her.
Sadly, the only thing that kept anyone interested in her life was her outlandish behavior which prompted many discusses as well as bets as to how much of which narcotic was responsible for her antics. Like hungry dogs we tuned into the television whenever her name was mentioned, eagerly salivating at the prospect of finding a morsel of embarrassing footage of Ms. Smith doing something over-the-top or saying something unintelligible.
And now in death, her claim to fame has followed her. It doesn’t matter that she was a mother who lost one child just as another was born and was probably lividly distraught—as anyone of us would be. It doesn’t matter that she had alluded to a physically and sexually abusive childhood. It doesn’t matter that her newborn daughter is left without a mother and men are coming out of the woodwork claiming to be her father—and controller of the money that she has yet to inherit. None of that matters so long as the media can milk this woman’s death for all it’s worth. From interviews, to home videos of Anna dressed in clown makeup, to sound bites of her slurred speech, to video clips of her mother shoveling dirt on her grave and walking over it, the media has used whatever it can get its hands on to keep their gravy train running. That Entertainment Tonight paid several millions dollars for exclusive rights to her funeral shows how far news stations will go and how important we as a nation seem to find this woman’s death.
Now I’m not saying that her death is not tragic, but I think that we need to be realistic about who she was and what she was worth. Does her death deserve to be mourned by those that she loved? Of course. Does it deserve to be celebrated by millions of vultures looking to make themselves feel better at the expense of what was left of this woman and her family’s dignity. Absolutely not! It’s bad enough that the dumbass judge in the dispute over her remains was auditioning for his own television show and turned a simple court proceeding into a three-day circus, but now Law and Order is doing a ‘ripped from the headlines’ episode loosely based on Anna Nicole’s death. Enough is enough already.
So I’m imploring all of you to leave Anna Nicole alone, let her rest and get a f***ing grip for Christ’s sake! You didn’t see this much publicity or attention given to President Gerald Ford or President Richard Nixon’s death, but the nation will gather together in mourning over a second-rate actresses; what a joke. I bet some of you are asking yourselves right now whether the aforementioned former presidents have indeed died and when that had happened—my point exactly.