The Wedding: The Media Is Out of Control
I realize that for public figures there is really no such thing as privacy and that it can be both a blessing and a curse. My own feeling is that we should err on the side of caution (ie. privacy) with respect to coverage of this wedding, particularly given Chelsea Clinton is currently not a public official even if she is considered by some in the media to be a public person by virtue of her parents being high profile leaders.
Susan Estrich has a commentary which I thought I’d post because I largely agree with her assessment of the media hype. It also is a very nice homage to Hillary and Bill Clinton’s parenting of Chelsea:
No, I wasn’t invited. I shouldn’t be. I’m a friend of her parents. They aren’t getting married. She is. The rule that invited guests should have a personal relationship with the bride or the groom is only the latest example of how good the Clintons (and the Mezvinskys) have been at the most important job in the world: being parents.
I have, sadly, been to plenty of weddings where the only way I knew the bride was by the dress. I have always felt silly in such situations (unless I knew the groom). What was I doing there? Whose party was it?
I don’t care how much the cake cost. I don’t care how much any of it cost or who paid or why. I don’t care who made the list. This is not a political event. It’s not a state dinner or anything close to that. It’s the wedding of two pretty terrific young people. That’s enough.
Anyone who has raised a child knows that there are no guarantees. You can try your best, but there’s no instruction manual, and there are no sure things.
Still, there are things that make it more difficult — for parents and children. Fame and too much money are among them. TMM, we call it out here. When you see kids who have no values, who don’t understand what matters and what doesn’t, who are spoiled and silly, the first thing you think is TMM. Or too much fame.
The Clintons didn’t have so much money when Chelsea was growing up, but fame and fancy friends certainly made up for it. There was no place they couldn’t go, nothing they couldn’t do or have. They made their share of mistakes.
But Chelsea wasn’t one of them.
Over eight sometimes difficult years in the White House, they were also parents. They made clear that she was their beloved daughter, not a prop.
When she so famously crossed the White House lawn with one hand holding that of each parent, we saw not the most powerful people in the world, but a family fighting to stay together, and the girl in the middle fighting just as hard as either of them.
She picked a college 3,000 miles away. She chose to be her own person, to live privately, to stay out of the limelight.
It is that very similarity, the normalcy, the fact that she will be surrounded by her friends and his friends — not her parents’ big donors or fancy supporters — that is the ultimate testament to what matters most.
I certainly wish the bride and groom a long, happy life together and I hope they have a wonderful day tomorrow- I am sure they will. That said, the guest list, the cost of the wedding, the type of gown and the honeymoon plans are really none of my business unless someone in the Clinton clan chooses to make it our (ie. the public) business. I understand that many Hillary fans are interested in this wedding because they are interested in the Secretary of State and simply want she and her family to be happy. But I am hoping that the media, and also the blogosphere, try to have some respect for their privacy. I know I will try. What I mean by that is that if official photos are issued- fantastic, I’d love to see them and I’ll post them here. If they aren’t issued and the only stuff circulating are illicit photos taken by some guest with his/her camera phone or by a TMZ staff person hanging from a tree, well, that crosses a line in my opinion, and you won’t see them here. Basically, I try to think to myself, “would they [the Clintons] want this photo/information posted on a blog?” I know sometimes it’s a blurry line in this age of social media and that such a judgment call can be subjective. But at the end of the day the important thing is that we at least try to use what so many in the media seem to lack- judgment.
ps. Scooter is still holding out for her invite…;)