When I heard that couples were blocked from seeing their babies in the NICU due to the birth of Beyonce' and Jay Z's baby girl Blue Ivy last week, I tried not to cringe, hoping that reports had been sensationalized by hasty post-partum attention seekers.
And indeed, a post on People's Celebrity Baby Blog included a statement from the hospital's executive director citing that no parents were kept from seeing their babies and that they hadn't paid some ridiculous amount of money to remodel the hospital wing.
But that's not what the New York Times had to say. According to reports from several families, cameras and windows were covered (a major security issue) and parents were lied to and separated from their babies, being told that if they left the NICU, they wouldn't be allowed back.
Whatever actually happened, it's clear that the Carters were attempting some level of privacy, which given their level of stardom is nearly impossible. The risk of other patients and hospital staff taking photos and selling them is probably high, though I would assume if discovered, those employees could be terminated for breaking confidentiality.
Unfortunately, their quest for normalcy cost parents on the same unit time with their babies.
Completely unfair. And yet, with deeper analysis, completely driven by our own culture. Perhaps even some of those same parents who were complaining.
When you and I pick up a rag mag, which by the way used to be National Enquirer and those other questionable publications that we'd roll our eyes at but now include the Peoples, US Weeklys, and the Life & Styles, we're fueling the fire.
The money we pay trickles down to the paparazzi who are paid to get the photo of Blue Ivy Carter.
Oh I'm guilty as charged, as I clamor to grab the latest of all these magazines during my mani-pedi visits and hair appointments, somehow justifying it since I'm not shelling out the $4.
I've watched E!, Access Hollywood, yes even TMZ. I've told myself that Entertainment Tonight is a more respectable.
It's Mary Hart for god sakes!
And I've read celebrity blogs, even the positive ones, flipping through slideshows of pictures of celebs, many of them with their children as they do nothing but walk to their car, push a grocery cart, and just try to go about their every day business like I do with my kids.
Just without a bunch of photographers screaming at me.
There's always been a celebrity fascination and I'm sure there always will. That will never change.
But we've gone from intrigued and curious to voracious and entitled, like we have a right to gorge on their personal business like we're eating at an Old Country Buffet.
Our admiration has turned to exploitation, and I just don't want anything to do with it, especially now that there are kids involved.
So as we point a finger at the Carters, who clearly could have done a better job at balancing their own needs for privacy with the other patients at the hospital, let's take a look where the other finger should be aimed.
Next time I go to the hairdresser, I'll be reading something else. Maybe you should too.