What has ‘Cocaine Kate’ really done wrong?

 
 

 

 

Famously private, Kate’s only real crime is to be a stunningly beautiful, successful career woman who has steadfastly refused to settle down, get married, and cosy up to the moronic celebrity press.
She is a model. The public seems to have forgotten that her job – her only job – is to look pretty on demand. And after 15 years in the notoriously brutal fashion industry, she still does it far better – and with infinitely more aplomb – than anyone else. Now, at the first chink in her impeccable armour the shrill, envious hyenas of the press are closing in for the kill.

They defend their rapaciousness. Wittering about how she’s a role model, a bad influence on children. A mother for god’s sake!

What cowardly, sexist nonsense. Kate is no more a role model by virtue of her profession than is the Mona Lisa by virtue of having sat for a painting. Both are merely outstandingly beautiful. If Kate had ever once put herself forward as a role model it would be different, but she never has. In fact, she never says anything in the press at all. Thereby clinging to a dignity which the majority of celebrities have long since abandoned.

Yes, she is a mother. By all accounts a devoted parent who enjoys playing dress-up and frolicking on the beach with her little daughter. Do the mewling hypocrites, with their trumped-up concerns, honestly believe a woman’s right to an adult private life disappears at conception? I certainly hope none of the women currently pillorying Kate have ever left their kids with a babysitter and gone out on the town for a night!

Kate is not being persecuted because she may have indulged in Class A’s, or enjoyed the odd Sapphic romp (notably, no one is queuing up to demand admitted drug-taker, self-harmer and lipstick lesbian Angelina Jolie’s children be taken away). She’s being vilified because of a much more basic, fundamental human flaw – the insecurity of her detractors.

Kate makes people uncomfortable. Women don’t understand how she can always look so flawless, so together. Men are baffled by her silence and haughty independence. Most of all, they don’t understand the notion of privacy, a value so old-fashioned that all the moralistic neo-Puritans no longer recognise it.

Take Kerry Katona, by way of contrast. She also had lurid drug allegations flung across the Sunday rags. Like Kate, she has young children and is separated from their father. And she is also regularly photographed falling out of nightclubs, bleary-eyed and clutching a fag.

The only difference – apart from Kate’s insouciant glamour – is that at the first whiff of trouble Kerry ran blubbing to the media. As a columnist for OK! She was guaranteed acres of fawning, apologist press, complete with flatteringly lit pictures of her cuddling her daughters. With the hounds of the press on her side the alleged week long coke binges became a terrible ‘betrayal.’ Her subsequent stint in a US rehab clinic was explained away as ‘exhaustion.’ Recently she sealed her redemption by posing with her boyfriend and publicly stating her desire to get married and have more children.

This is what 21st Century Britain demands of its women. The façade of independence – fags, booze, singledom – coupled with deep rooted conservatism (babies, husbands, no recreational drugs except alcohol). Only now, instead of being mediated by family, government or the church these social mores are deployed by the media like anti-aircraft fire: aimed at anyone who’s soared too high.

The victims of these new witch hunts are not the guilty – surely if that were the case Pete Doherty who is the father of a young son and whose drug antics are a matter of public record – would be on the dock alongside his on-off lover. They are, rather, the stubborn few women who hold on to two dangerous notions. First, that they are entitled to a life outside the pages of Heat magazine. Second, that ‘female equality’ means something in this day and age.

Sorry Kate. You have paid your own way, carved your own career, and made your own decisions, but that doesn’t give you the right to your own life.

 

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