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We were offered the first cable interview on this new Kennedy book, the one that says JFK, Jr.'s marriage was troubled. I turned it down, even though the subject usually brings high ratings. Very simply, there's nothing important about this information. Mr. Kennedy was not a public official and his tragic death must still be causing pain to his family. Why cause them further pain?
The Bessette family also does not need to hear salacious stuff about their late daughter. Remember, that family lost two young women, Carolyn and her sister. Would any of us want to add to that family's pain? Of course not. But we do by buying books and magazines and watching TV programs that hammer the deceased couple.
My attitude about this is a turnaround of sorts. You may remember that I anchored the program Inside Edition for six years. And we certainly did our share of celebrity scandal stories there. At the time, I didn't think much of it: The rich and powerful were fair game.
But now I'm rich and powerful. And almost every day, I see vicious, untrue stuff written about me. And I see the pain it brings my family and friends. So my attitude has changed somewhat, perhaps selfishly, but maybe I'm just getting smarter.
There is, of course, a difference between JFK, Jr. and his father. President Kennedy and every other president must be held accountable for what they do in office. That goes for every public official. If there's sex going on in the Oval Office, the people that pay for that office, us, have a right to know about it. But private citizens with no power over us are entitled to rest in peace. What on earth can be gained by knowing about JFK, Jr.'s marriage? It's simply voyeurism and it's cruel to the families who survive.
These days, the press is driven by profit and scandal is certainly profitable. Some of it must be reported, as it involves high-profile people who can sway events. The Bill Bennett story had to be reported, as did the Kennedy-Cuomo separation here in New York.
But JFK, Jr. and his wife? Come on. This is sadistic garbage. All of us should walk away. And then maybe the profits would go away and the Kennedy and Bessette families could avoid more pain. After all, we're all in this together. And they're Americans, too.
And that's The Memo.
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
The caretaker of Grant's Tomb here in New York City says pop singer Beyonce disrespected former U.S. President Grant who, of course, is buried inside the tomb.
Beyonce performed at the tomb on July 4 wearing some skimpy gear -- which we regret was not Factor gear -- and the caretaker says the singer's clothing and moves were inappropriate for a final resting place. The 18th president, Grant, died in 1885 and his tomb is now run by the federal government.
Now, frankly, I wouldn't mind Beyonce dancing on my grave or anywhere near me when I'm alive, but I do believe old Ulysses might have seen this whole thing as being ridiculous.
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