In modern Hollywood, there's Tori Spelling and then there's Kristen Bell.
Spelling, born into a famous family, is the focus of a "reality" show called "True Tori" which allows cameras to film her, her estranged husband Dean McDermott and their four small children as the family battles through her husband's apparent unfaithfulness and other issues.
The program airs on Lifetime.
Meanwhile Bell, who rose to fame as the title character in "Veronica Bell," has launched a movement called No Kids Policy, which is looking to lessen media demand for paparazzi photos of the children of celebrities.
A number of famous people have signed on with Bell's concept, which basically has them avoiding doing any sort of interview with a media outlet that pays for photos or video taken of these children without their parents' consent.
Bell said in a recent interview with The Associated Press: "I'll argue until my dying day that my daughter should not be affected by my career choice."
Her daughter, Lincoln, is 11 months old and Bell fears her child will be "hunted" by those seeking photos to sell.
Of course, I have absolutely no idea what it's like to be a celebrity and no desire to find out what it is all about. However, it is my deeply held opinion that it's galling that we live in a world where any parent needs to worry about the safety of his/her child because of stalkers of any kind.
A few weeks ago, I attempted to watch Spelling's "reality" show. It was achingly painful and all I could think was "those poor children." Some say Spelling and McDermott have "staged" their whole marital mess as a money-making enterprise and that they are in fact acting out a scenario to bring media attention their way.
If that is true, it's child abuse of a modern sort. The oldest child being filmed in this reality show is 7 and the youngest is 2. It would be awful enough to know their troubled family life is being documented for all of eternity but if any of this story is being fabricated to boost ratings that's even more horrible.
Bell, on the other hand, is striving to keep the spotlight off her child and the other children born to those who are considered fair game because they are in the entertainment industry. Her point is the parents have chosen to pursue a career in the public eye, but the children did not seek this attention.
Which is really opposed from the modern mindset, unfortunately. It has become standard operating practice to expect to see photos of Suri Cruise or any of the Jolie-Pitt brood in a magazine and to watch video of these children doing everyday activities like going to school, shopping for shoes or having a meal.
It's one thing when a famous parent posts a photo of his/her child in social media and completely another when these kids are stalked, chased and hunted.
Often "the media" is blamed for the paparazzi's actions, but we consumers have to share some of the blame because if no one spent money to buy the magazines or to support the advertisers supporting the television shows that feature these intrusive photos and video, the practice would die off.
If there's no money in the enterprise, the enterprise ends. And children do not deserve to be a commodity, regardless how famous or infamous their parents are.
Renee Prusi can be contacted at 906-228-2500, ext. 240. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.