Crashers Show No Shame in Quest for Fame

White House party crashers reportedly ask for interview money. Let them tell their story for free – in a courtroom

By Jere Hester
|  Monday, Nov 30, 2009  |  Updated 5:08 AM EDT
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Maybe their next party will be in jail.

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The alleged White House party crashers reportedly are seeking big bucks for a TV interview to tell their tale of shameless self-promotion and stupidity. With a little patience, and justice, we should be hearing their story for free – in a courtroom.

It’s inexplicable that the couple – we’re not going to help sate their lust for fame by repeating their names – is free to seek bids for a possible TV appearance.

Nutcases who send the president poison-pen letters hundreds of miles away from 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. get locked up first and asked questions later. These so-called “socialites” came face-to-face with the most powerful, ostensibly best-protected person in the country, allegedly uninvited. But instead of cooling their well-heeled heels in the slammer, they’re reportedly seeking to extend their 15 minutes of infamy – and reap a six-figure payday, amid an investigation. 

If the Balloon Boy saga offered a cautionary tale, wrought in floating Mylar, about parents using their own child as a pawn to get a reality show, last week’s party-crashing incident is a giant, flapping, red flag atop the White House suggesting some people will brazenly breach our highest levels of security for a spot on TV.

It’s worth checking out The Washington Post’s in-depth portrait of shallowness: She tried to pass herself off as a former “supermodel” and ex-Washington Redskins cheerleader as she vied for a slot on “Real Housewives of D.C.” He’s spent his 40 years on earth playing polo and living off his family’s money, though that sweet deal seemed to be ending in morass of feuds and lawsuits.

So the couple, in an age where Paris Hilton and the Kardashians gals are famous for nothing other than doing nothing in expensive settings, apparently set their sights on becoming reality TV stars. And what better way to get instant notice that hob-nobbing with the president?

The couple has yet to speak, other than through their lawyer, who chalks the whole mess up to misunderstanding. But reports that they want money to tell their side indicate a lack of chagrin.

"I'll be very sad if, when this is resolved, my daughter does any TV appearances, because I am counting on the Secret Service to clear this up with dignity," the woman’s 82-year-old mother told the New York Post.

Dignity, sadly, doesn’t seem to enter into the alleged party crashers’ thought processes. Meanwhile, the Secret Service, which traditionally reacts quickly and bravely to immediate danger, is taking its time considering charges against the duo.

As the little drama plays out, let’s for a moment imagine a world where the alleged White House party crashers share a cell with Balloon Boy’s parents. Now that would make one heck of a reality show…
 

Hester is founding director of the award-winning, multi-media NYCity News Service at the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism. He is the former City Editor of the New York Daily News, where he started as a reporter in 1992. Follow him on Twitter.

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