It’s been difficult to avoid Paris Hilton. Cable news channels had constant coverage of yesterday’s bizarre events – in which Paris was released into home arrest wearing an electronic monitor, then taken before another court which ruled that she must return to prison. The weeping face of the clearly traumatised heiress was broadcast repeatedly. Amid the relentless white noise of vox pops, so-called “expert commentators” and giggling co-anchors on the main broadcast networks, I was struck by how all of them refer blithely to the two-tiered system of justice in the US in which wealth and privilege give a select few options not available to the rest of us. But none of these talking heads propose any solution to this outrageous double standard. Just rueful smiles and a shaking of heads.
My prediction is that after she’s finally released, Paris will hold a press conference in which she will whinge about her treatment, claim she was a victim of “the system”, but offer just enough of a regretful tone to garner the forgiveness of a culture obsessed with sin and celebrity in equal measure. It will also ensure her a huge book deal.
I’m still waiting for Donald Trump to show up like the Saviour and redeem Paris, like he did with the “fallen” Miss America 2006 after her tearful revelations of partying as a wide-eyed mid-Westerner in big bad New York City. Trump, owner of the Miss USA Pageant, swept the young former maiden up off the floor and reinstated the crown upon her tarnished head. In the US anyone can offer redemption if they have enough money and fame, and there’s a blonde and blue-eyed Mary Magdalene who wants saving.