Really Awful Fathers in Celeb Spotlight
By Marilyn Beck and Stacy Jenel Smith
ollywoodnews.com: With Father’s Day approaching, Jon Gosselin’s involuntarily back on the sleaze news circuit with the widespread play of a leaked (by whom?) video in which he and ex-girlfriend Hailey Glassman are giggling all over their Pringles on a San Tropez hotel balcony — stoned.
Such a really awful father.
He’s now Mr. Pot Head after having been Mr. Extra-Marital Carouser and Mr. Litigation. Last year, you may recall, once he learned that TLC planned to do “Kate Plus 8” — minus Jon — he demanded through he attorneys that the show cease production immediately or face criminal charges, and barred cameras from his/their property. The cable channel answered with its own breach of contract suit, then Jon answered that. Rumors of a sex tape and cocaine abuse surfaced. Jon brought up child labor practices in his ongoing fight with TLC. And even as the subpoenas flew, Jon’s other ex-girlfriend, Kate Major – another Kate — got into the act, reportedly planning her own suit, claiming violation of a contract they’d written up on a napkin, calling for the former Star reporter to become Jon’s personal assistant.
Jon settled with TLC in February, freeing him to do whatever he does. Roll joints with his 23-year-old lady, or whatever.
Gosselin is not alone. This past year has been quite a vintage for really awful fathers.
Still fresh in our minds is the spectacle of Joe Jackson attempting to squeeze more money out of his late son Michael – who pointedly left him out of his will.
Although a Superior Court judge ruled that Jackson, Sr., had no standing to challenge that legal document, he pursued getting an allowance out of the estate, saying he has living expenses of $20,000 a month and no income of his own, so of course he needs the dough. He laid plans to appeal the appointment of the estate’s executors — even as he was eyeing Michael’s children for their performing potential, noting that he’s heard seven-year-old Blanket “can really dance.” Another generation to exploit!
This is the man Michael once said made him feel sick to his stomach, just being in the same room with him.
This is the man who answered “I’m great,” when asked how he was feeling at the BET Awards, three days after Michael’s death – and proceeded to use the occasion to tell press on the red carpet about his new record company.
This is the man shadowed by accusations of abusing Michael as a child – who said once in a BBC interview, “I never beat him. I whipped him with a switch and a belt. I never beat him. You beat someone with a stick.”
The train wreck that is Michael Lohan and daughter Lindsay’s relationship goes from worse to worse — even without those disturbing reports that he asked to see Lindsay look-alikes doing their thing in a strip joint.
He has made a name and career for himself out of commenting on Lindsay’s latest reckless activity, getting mileage out of everything from Lindsay’s partying to her (he says) prescription pill abuse. He released tapes that disclosed her relationship with the late Heath Ledger and confirmed suspicions of her self-harm – tapes including Lindsay crying and sobbing that no one cares about her — so that (to hear him tell it) the young star would get help. That he made the tapes without his family’s knowledge and sold them says it all. Mother Dina (not averse to exploiting Lindsay herself) jumping in to point out that the tapes weren’t current makes it worse.
Mom ‘n’ Dad meeting about Lindsay, plans for a family intervention, Michael’s feelings about her recent missed court date, her alcohol-indicating ankle bracelet — it’s all fuel for his 24-hour news cycle. He’s cozied up to the scandal press he keeps feeding nuggets about his wayward child — a thoroughly disgusting partnership.
This is the man who served a four-year sentence in the 1980s for stock fraud and has been back behind bars on parole violation. This is the man who fought with former wife Dina throughout Lindsay’s childhood, who has been accused by her of threats, domestic violence and drug and alcohol abuse.
And now he reportedly plans to open a club in the Hamptons called…wait for it…CONTROVERSY! Ah ha ha ha.
Then we have the ridiculous Levi Johnston, showing up here, there – ‘most anywhere – to say a few disparaging words about Sarah Palin, the grandmother of his one-year-old son, Tripp. Clearly, the 20-year-old amateur hockey player has a taste for the spotlight, including wanting to do a reality show – of his own, especially! — and showing off his nekkid body in Playgirl magazine. Pays a lot better than training to become an electrician, which is what Levi was doing before fate and an unplanned pregnancy took a hand.
That baby mama Bristol Palin says he is “a stranger to me” now and hasn’t been around to see his baby, is no surprise. Not to be negative – he’s young, maybe he’ll change — but the forecast for this daddy to turn into a father of merit is pretty bleak. On Oprah’s show last fall, Palin noted that he’s taken to calling himself Rikki Hollywood, and that it’s “a bit heartbreaking to see the road he’s on right now.”
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