What would you do to secure your 15 minutes of fame? How about to increase your financial well-being?
Would you exploit your child on national television? Would you reinforce and applaud behavior that is likely to create lifetime problems for your child? Would you become the family that everyone loves to ridicule?
For the parents of Honey Boo Boo, the uber-precocious child with her own show airing on TLC, the answer is yes and a lot more.
How bad is it? If Honey Boo Boo was of legal age, we would label her parents as parasites. But because she is 6, irresponsible scum will have to do.
Why Should You Care?
Normally, I’m a live and let live kind of guy. People can vote with their remote if they want this child to have her own show. I certainly wouldn’t bring this up on a blog about business, leadership, and results.
But, we aren’t just talking about the potential destruction of one child’s life.
Publicizing and aggrandizing this type of parental and child behavior spawns copycat action that tries to take shock value to an even higher level. Be honest, there are only three reasons to watch this show:
1. You think it is funny to laugh at outlandish behavior.
2. Watching Honey Boo Boo makes you feel less bad about your situation.
3. You are researching the next gimmick to get your own show.
The price for promoting and exploiting the Honey Boo Boo’s of the world is high. The result is a society devoid of character. We lose the piece of our soul that defines the moral boundaries of right and wrong. And as the philosopher Heraclitus so eloquently said, “Character is destiny.”
You may be thinking that this is much ado about nothing of consequence. Someone probably thought the same thing the first time someone was in an automobile accident because of texting.
Two recent events show that at least some people are taking the wrong message from this tragic story.
- Rosie O’Donnell is quoted as saying that she adores the family and wants to buy them a house. Realizing that there are some of you who are not surprised by Ms. O’Donnell’s position, consider this.
- Brian Palmer, President of the highly respected National Speakers Bureau, told me that he recently received a inquiry about hiring Honey Boo Boo as a speaker for one of his clients. The absurdity boggles the mind, and the fact that someone is willing to pay for Honey Boo Boo to appear confirms that copycats are on the way.
Is There Anything to be Done?
The best thing you can do is don’t watch. Beyond that, remember that what is cute and precocious now will hinder gainful employment in 20 years.
One more thing – if someone you know is heading down this path with their child, please purchase them a copy of Larry Winget’s excellent book, Your Kids Are Your Own Fault.