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About Paris Hilton going to jail...

Long ago and far away, children, yours truly was a Hollywood gossip columnist for The Hollywood Reporter, a daily entertainment newspaper. The column was about the music business and the people who spent most nights all week in clubs supposedly keeping up with the music business, but getting in all sorts of inebriated difficulties along the way — a bit like Paris Hilton acts today.

And before that, I did a stretch as a guard in one of L.A. County's incarceration facilities, a jail we called a juvenile hall.

So when I say Paris Hilton should be in jail, I come at it from experience in lawless Hollywood club life and as a one-time deputy probation officer assigned to keep lawless kids locked up.

When I say Paris Hilton deserves jail, I base it on experience, seeing who should be in jail and who actually is in jail. Paris qualifies under the heading "should be."

When I was going to these places I saw a lot of people who worked very hard to make sure their lawbreaking was not noticed by police. They had some sense of reality.

Not Paris. Her attitude is completely different. There is no point in covering up your bad behavior if it doesn't matter.

In her world, cops are just like the other servants. The law is what daddy pays for at the offices of his many lawyers. Justice is what mommy sells when something goes wrong, like Paris' sex tape. These are people so rich, so idle and so accustomed, evidently, to odd behavior that they are still proud of their daughter Paris, star of a sex tape seen around the world.

Dad evidently just shrugs. Mom had the gall to actually call the prosecutor "pathetic" when the only people in this fiasco who should face that word are all named Hilton.

There is a chance — just a chance — that 45 days in a nasty place like the Century Detention Center in Lynnwood — beautiful Lynnwood, California — might do some good that her parents never managed to give her themselves. It's a shame the state of California has to occasionally take over parenting duties, but as I say, I've seen this before.

And who knows? Maybe the judge who sent Paris to jail knows someone whose daughter thinks Paris Hilton is a good role model. Maybe he's doing it for all of us, not just her.

That's My Word.

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