Friday, September 25, 2009

Rant #97: Baring Ones Soul On National TV

When people like you and I have burdens to bare, we often lookto our friends, relatives and loved ones as people who will offer a shoulder to cry on.

When celebrities have their burdens, they write books and go on network television to vent their frustrations.

The latest celebrity to go this route is Mackenzie Phillips, the former child star and long-time drug abuser, who recently went on Oprah Winfrey’s daily gabfest to not only push her book, but also to tell the world a deep, dark secret: she had had a long-term inappropriate relationship with her father, John, the leader of the classic Mamas and Papas pop group.

Phillips said she had been abused for many years, to the point that the relationship had become consensual. It was only terminated because Phillips became pregnant, and thought her father might have sired the child (she had been married during this period, so it was either her husband or her father).

If what Phillips said is true, it is a devastating admission about her relationship with her dad. Of course, he is not here to defend himself, and her credibility as a long-time drug abuser has to be questioned.

That being what it is, why is Phillips using the Oprah show as a platform to tell the world about this supposed experience? Is she doing it to hawk a book, or is she doing it to “come clean” to the public at large? Is she doing it to revive her career, or to help other women come out with their own admissions?

Whatever the case, celebrities going on national TV shows to air their dirty laundry is nothing new. Just a week before Phillips, Whitney Houston came out with her own stories about her relationship with Bobby Brown.

And, of course, she came out with these admissions as her new album was being released.

You just have to wonder why celebrities feel the need to unload their feelings in front of millions of people. First off, why not do this with a licensed therapist that can help you deal with these feelings? The last time I looked, Oprah did not have this attribute on her resume.

Secondly, what are the celebrities’ motives for doing this and are the hosts of these shows going for ratings or are they truly concerned for these people?

I do not understand why celebrities’ skeletons in their closets are not handled in a better way. Why must they come on these shows and air their dirty laundry like they do?

Again, I don’t know if Phillips’ story is credible or not. Based on her past, there are lots of questions to be asked about this, and again, her father is not here to defend himself.

But that doesn’t excuse celebrities from using these shows as their own pulpit, not only to expunge some demons but to sell some product.

To me, it just isn’t the right thing to do.


  1. Larry,
    This strikes me as being a sham. Nobody else in the family shares her views, even though all acknowledged how messed up John Phillips was. I feel she is doing this to sell a book, and that is shameful.
    Richard Anselmo

  2. What i've seen and heard, i think she added this to her book to sell the book and was on Oprah just to sell her book. I don't believe her and like you said Papa John isn't here to defend himself.
    I don't need to know the private lives of actors and singers i admire, real or made up.

  3. Yes, it kind of reeks of that, doesn't it?

    Her credibility is so low, and she is taking her father with her, which is a shame.

    I just wish that she would have taken this somewhere else. The only help she is getting is via her pocketbook.

  4. I just hate it when celebrities cry about every little thing, and they think that we, the public, have to listen to this trash and believe them. Now, incest is not a "little thing"; but if what she is saying is true, go to someone who can really help you. That's what the general public would do in such a situation, not go on national TV and bare your soul to sell a book.

    And Oprah should be ashamed of herself for giving Phillips this pulpit to preach from.

    Again, I really don't know if what she claims is true or not, but it's so convenient that her father isn't here to defend himself, isn't it?

    Don't sell your soul to sell books, CDs, films, etc.--every celebrity should take heed of this.

  5. She's a trashed out heroin addict who looks like she's been rode hard and put away wet and she expects the public to sympathize with her? PLEEEEEZE. Everyone knows John Phillips was a piece of scum even bringing his daughter into drug addiction,but I wonder what else he did behind the scenes. I wonder if Michelle Phillips ever commented on the relationship between the two. I know many people out there like PAPA John, but it wouldn't surprise me if what she said IS true. That being said, that is one piece of information I wouldn't want on national TV. I blame Oprah as well. We don't need to hear about this crap.Since you can't slander the dead, MacKenzie will say anything to get her 15 minutes of fame again. She's trash.

  6. I agree. Even if it is true--and it very well might be--to go on national TV to sell your book via the incest route is plain crazy. Would Oprah have interviewed her otherwise? I doubt it. And it has also put Phillips back in the public eye, so in a bizarre way, if this is all true, she can thank her father for that. Personally, I think the whole thing reeks, and it should have been left between Phillips and her therapist, who again, is probably not named Oprah Winfrey.



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