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Breaking the Law - It's a Good Thing

by Neena Louise

I've never liked Martha Stewart. Ever. I've always found her just too full of herself. Her products at K-Mart are overpriced for their sub-par quality; her show might have been okay if she wasn't on it; though I am an accomplished cook, her recipes rarely turned out as well as they should...nearly everything about her turns me off. Consequently, I was one of those that not-so-secretly gloated when she was arrested, tried and convicted. If you ask me, people like that always get theirs in the end and it served her right. But did it?

I listened carefully to both sides, striving to remain as impartial as possible, given my personal distaste for Stewart. The conclusion I drew is yes, it did serve her right. Not because I find her offensive, but because she unquestionably broke the law. Pure and simple. The more I heard her speak about the whole thing, the more convinced I became that she's totally guilty and doesn't have the slightest bit of remorse for her crime. Furthermore, I get the distinct impression that, given the chance, she'd do it again without hesitation. Stewart whined incessantly about what a raw deal she got and how such a "small personal matter" got blown out of proportion and how she didn't deserve the treatment she got. She seems to fail to realize that she was treated leaps and bounds better than someone who is poor and unknown would have been treated under the same circumstances. What if she wasn't Martha Stewart and just Joe Schmoe? Would she have gotten the same treatment? Doubtful. She could afford an army of lawyers and has a cache of celebrity friends (misguided though they may be) and, therefore, got off with little more than a slap on the wrist. Joe Schmoe would have been unceremoniously tossed in prison. And not at "Camp Cupcake" (as the minimum security institution where Stewart was incarcerated was called), but at "Camp Watch Your Back or Die".

Now Stewart's been released from prison to a mountain of largely-positive press and a new reality TV deal, gigantically boosting her career. I am thoroughly disgusted. Disgusted not only with the press and her high-profile pals, but with the fact that a convicted criminal is being held up as a positive role model. She's being rewarded for breaking the law! How many ex-cons would receive such heraldry? Though I firmly believe everyone deserves a second chance, I also believe they must earn their second chance by proving they are worthy. Stewart's been handed her second chance on a silver platter with no effort on her part, and with a most offensive sense of entitlement. Even if she was someone I liked (which, in case you haven't figured it out, she isn't), I'd still expect some remorse, perhaps an apology and a modicum of effort to win back approval before I'd be willing to give her that second chance. She simply sashayed out of prison and into the loving arms of the public and a huge paycheck.

Regardless of one's feelings towards Martha Stewart, the fact remains that she broke the law without a second thought (showing no remorse when she was caught) and should not be held up as a positive role model. What kind of message does that send? That breaking the law is perfectly acceptable if you're someone like Martha Stewart?!?

This is not a good thing. 
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