I was going to write an open letter to Kathy Hilton, she being Paris’s mother, responding to her brief commentary she put up on Huffingtonpost.com over the weekend. She was somehow bothered that John McCain, in an idiotic ad last Friday, suggested that Barack Obama was being treated as a celebrity in the same way as her daughter Paris. (And Britney Spears.)
I was going to call her a hypocrite and that no Hilton would ever turn down any publicity, no matter how unsavory, and that she was just asking for more attention. I was going to challenge her to do the unthinkable: simply say or do nothing and thus not dignify what was, even among many Republican circles and pundits, a superficial ad. Reaching farther still, I was going to blame her for raising the one person who has perhaps singlehandedly glorified the meaning of celebrity and all of its vapidity. I was going to say that Paris, the talentless heiress who became superstar famous for a sex tape and for having no discernible talent, is responsible herself for an apathetic, feckless youth that has succumbed to an obsession with anything about celebrities. How could they possibly have time or space in their tiny minds to concern themselves with a presidential campaign. Rock the Vote? Uh, no, pass me that People Magazine and Brangelina’s $14 million pics of her twins.
So I was all ready to pile on Paris some more, and then this: a video in which she makes fun of the McCain ad in her own unique way. A pigtailed Paris talks about “wrinkly white haired guy” who used her in his campaign ad, she being a “celebrity” and all, and that she (totally) is ready to lead America. Obviously this is all tongue-in-cheek, sitting there by the pool in a lounge chair, decked out in a knockout one-pieced bikini with exposed features and stilleto pumps. Then the clincher: “And now I want to present my energy policy for America” —but not until she looks inside her magazine. Conde Nast Traveler, to find out where she can get the best tan (it’s Maui, duh!).
And guess what? Yeah, she is clearly reading some cue cards but the girl can act and also present what seem to be sensible ideas by taking a “hybrid” approach –a little bit of Obama and some of what McCain is preaching. Make sense? Sure. Is it deep? No. But does it accomplish what it sets out to do –i.e., stick it to the old dude where he looks like a fool. Maybe. But it is Paris who surprises. By boldly poking a little fun at herself and her attitude (“See ya at the debates, bitches!”), she can seem pretty disarming for a two-minute spot.