Beliefnet
Idol Chatter

Over the weekend, I logged onto one of my favorite websites, Go Fug Yourself, to get their take on the most important celebutante-related gossip of the weekend: Paris Hilton being sentenced to 45 days in jail. Sure enough, their top post began with the following: “Karma is a bitch. And so is Paris Hilton.”

Oh, Paris. We all love to hate you. Every article about you is usually run with a caveat about how you’re famous for nothing, how you’re an example of everything that’s wrong with America today, and how if we just stopped paying attention, you’d slink away forever. We call you words like idiot and slut, words we’d be offended and horrified to have anyone call us. We write about how much we hate all the coverage you get. We talk about how much we hate how people always talk about you. We see how well tabloids sell when your picture is on the cover, and we swear it must be someone else who’s buying them. Oh, Paris. In many ways we are no better than you.

Karma? Sure. Let’s talk about karma. Let’s talk about how when you put something out into the universe, you get more of it in return. So when our society values blondes with blue eyes and perfect tans, a dark-haired, wealthy, and well-connected teenage girl named Paris dyes her hair, goes to a tanning salon, and gets her parents to buy her colored contacts. She becomes the extreme form of all the things we’ve idealized, and we hate her for it. So there’s your karma: We’ve gotten what we’ve asked for.

Advertisements make us feel inferior because we don’t have the expensive cars and designer clothes–but Paris gets to have them. And though many of us believe that we value love, kindness, and generosity, we’re more likely to buy the latest issue of Us Weekly about Paris’ latest boyfriend escapades then we are to give that money to a homeless person on the street. We hate Paris because we made her. We hate Paris because we think we could do a better job being her. What kind of karma comes out of that?

Paris going to jail for committing a crime could be considered karmic retribution. Or it could just be considered the American judicial system in action. But in most cases it would be declasse to yell and cheer in court. However, if you’re the judge sentencing Paris, you get a standing ovation.

If we want Paris to go to prison for doing something illegal, that’s one thing. But most of the articles I’ve been reading take obvious glee in Paris’ sentence, as if they want her to go to prison just for being who she is and see her probation violation as the excuse needed to make it happen. A culture where simply being disliked, which may have been an undercurrent in a court decision for jail time, is a culture I want no part of. Regardless of what good or bad opinions I have of Paris, I’d never wish evil upon her. I hear that’s bad for your karma.

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