Category Archives: Hot Topics
When news broke that Russell Armstrong, husband of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Taylor Armstrong, hung himself, it sent a shock throughout the world of Reality Television. Now,the Sept. 5th premiere of the new season, may not happen after all. Could this be the end of the Real Housewives franchise? Don’t forget to take the poll at the bottom of the page.
Were things that bad for Russell? In the past few days, several things about the fe of the Armstrong’s has come to light:
Russell Armstrong was $1-10 million in debt.
filed for bankruptcy in 2005.
Taylor Armstrong recently filed for divorce.
according to sources, Russell feared the ridicule of the castmates, and there was talk of a tell-all book, that may have painted Russell in a VERY negative light.
All of these things , according to Russell’s attorney, Ron Richards were just too much for him to bear: (via Reuters.com)
“He worked hard to get her where she was. Who do you think paid for that lifestyle?” Richards said in an interview with TheWrap. “He was disappointed. … He basically spent all their savings, and didn’t accumulate any savings, to support the show.”
Richards added: “He wasn’t rich. He was just generating enough income to not lose the cover. The expenses were getting higher and higher and he was unable to cover it.”
Armstrong also complained that the show “didn’t care if they ruined his marriage,” Richards said.
I have to admit, I was a little puzzled to hear about all of the financial trouble, considering I watched last year as Taylor hosted a
ridiculously tacky $60,000 birthday party for their 4 YEAR OLD DAUGHTER! I am all about the finer things at any age, but I thought that was a little over board even before I knew they were really broke. In addition to their public spats on the show, Taylor claimed in divorce papers that Russell was physically abusive to her. I have to ask. Did Taylor file after the abuse, or was Russell going broke, REALLY the last straw ? Just asking.
Russell’s mother told HLN’s Jane Mitchell that she had very strong opinions regarding what happened to her son:
Mrs. Armstrong goes on to say that, Taylor had very expensive taste, and it was hard for Russell to keep up. According to Mrs. Armstrong, ‘Taylor’s next husband ‘better be a Millionaire or Billionaire, because that is all who can afford her.’
In all fairness, all of the participants of these shows chose to be a part, and accept the fact that their lives are up for complete and total ridicule. It may not be right…But,that is the way it is.
That’s the view of ‘A Real American Girl’
|Caylee Marie Anthony|
Unless you live in a cave, you already know the history of this case, so I will start with where we are now- NOT GUILTY. That is according to the Florida jury. Now, several questions remain. The first: ‘Why did they acquit ? Could they not see ?’ See what, exactly ? That she was irresponsible..we got that. Had little regard for human life..absolutely. She was a compulsive liar..you betcha ! Took tacky photos while drinking…confirmed ! Did the prosecution prove she committed murder…Let’s talk about that. Before you get in an uproar, please understand that I do not work for the defense. I, like anyone else, was on the side of justice. But, unlike some people, I need facts when it comes to sending someone to the Death chamber. Hard to believe I’m from Texas, right ?
Now, here are the facts: A child is dead. She was buried in the woods by someone. That concludes our facts. The rest of this case, rested on theories. And, if we relied on theory to send people to Death Row-people, we would REALLY be in trouble. Yet, that is what the Florida DA wanted from 12 citizens who came from all walks of life. This was not a simple case. Not Andrea Yates, who admitted to drowning her children. Or Susan Smith, who was flat out caught in her web of lies. This case was like an empty well that they tried desperately (and it is desperate when you call in ‘odor experts’) to fill it up. At first, it seemed like it might work. The DA’s wheel was spinning hard, and spinning fast. As long as nothing happened to throw a wrench in it.
And, then, there was Jose Baez. The guy with the wrench. Born in Puerto Rico, raised in the Bronx and South Florida. A high school DROPOUT, who later got his GED, went to community college, and then Florida State. After years of a mediocre career (including ethical violations, yeah, I know), he stepped into the courtroom over a month ago, and announced to the court that ‘Caylee Marie Anthony accidentally DROWNED in her pool.’ And, so it begins. The WORLD’S jaw dropped. Some call it a lie. Some call it brilliant. And, every sin known to Man that could occur in one family, occurred within the Anthony home-according to Baez. When you add up-smells, partying, lies, and a tattoo…That still, does not equal Murder. Beyond a reasonable doubt.
And, for the record, although they still have my sympathy, George and Cindy Anthony have a share of responsibility in this as well. You can only do so much for Adult children until you have to make them take responsibility for their own actions.
There has also been criticism for the Prosecution: Maybe they should NOT have sought the Death Penalty with such limited evidence. Maybe. There has been criticism for Nancy Grace and her bulldog, biased, sensationalized approach to this case. Casey was convicted in the court of public opinion 3 yeas ago via an 8pm cable show, by a former Prosecutor who certainly makes more money ‘talking’ about Justice, than actually seeking it. I don’t want to add to the criticism, therefore, I have nothing to say.
I’m not sure what happend to Caylee. But, I am willing to bet that she may still be alive if she had not had Casey as a mother. The possible profit that this woman stands to gain is unlimited. But, as my favorite book states, ‘What profit a man to gain the whole world, only to lose his soul.’ She has no idea the Hell she faces ‘outside’ of prison walls. At the age of 25, when she could be a model, a businesswoman, or anything she wanted to be..Instead, she is a Pariah, ostricized,hated, what company will hire her ? What neighborhood wants her ? Friends, her Life Sentence has BEGUN. And, instead of the safety of prison, among other sociopaths, she will have to serve it in the Real World. And, we are ALL her Wardens. Believe me, there is some justice in that.
In the end, this is a very sad tale. No winners. No heroes. I’m not sure what the lesson is, but maybe that will come in time. But, please don’t let the lesson be that we should not believe in the Justice system. It is because our system is based on evidence and not imagination that our system is still the best in the world. Look, those jurors had nothing to gain by setting her free.
Except the ability to sleep at night.
|Bam Margera, Roger Ebert, and Roger Dunn|
Casey Anthony, on trial in Florida for killing her daughter in 2008.
Unfortunately, there is no short version to this story,and there will be no happy ending. In 2008, Casey Anthony told her mother that Caseys’ 2 year old daughter, Caylee had gone missing. Kidnapped by the babysitter. When asked, when was the last time she saw her daughter, Casey replied: ’31 days ago.’ The story takes off from there. First, she said the babysitter had her, lead the police on a wild goose chase, only to find that there was NO BABYSITTER ! To make matters worse, during the time that the child was ‘missing’, Casey was seen in nightclubs partying into the late hours. So where was Caylee ? Six months after being reported missing, the remains of 2 year old Caylee Anthony were found in the woods, just a short distance from the family home.
For the full back story go here:
NOW 3 years later,as the trial begins, the defense, says that ‘Caylee accidentally DROWNED !’ And, to make matters worse, the defense is trying to make Caseys’ father, George Anthony a suspect in his granddaughters death ! Yet, they still stand by their daughter, as they have all along. This case has become more of a conspiracy to cover up, and it may take more than one trial to uncover the layers of lies, told by this family. We can only wait. Rest in peace, Caylee.
I am watching the trial everyday on HLN, and you should follow me on Twitter at www.twitter.com/msnicolebarrett for up to the minute news on this never ending saga.
That’s the view from ‘A Real American Girl’
|The scene at Ground Zero when it was announced that Bin Laden was dead.|
Don’t forget to take the poll on the right !
When I walked into one of my favorite restaurants, I expected to hear chatter and laughter. Instead, it was unusually quiet. I said, ‘Hey’ to the server and he just pointed at the TV. I looked and there across the CNN bulletin, the words: Osama Bin Laden is Dead. And, there I stood with the rest of them. Was this real ? Did they REALLY get him ? The questions swirled in my head until I came to realization that it was true. A 10 year nightmare had reached an explosive ending. The World’s Most Wanted Fugitive, had been captured and killed by U.S Navy Seals…WOW ! The next 24 hours for me were consumed by CNN and FOX News. I wanted to know everything. Who was there ? How many people ? What did they have in the form of weapons ? And, how many WIVES did this fool have ? It is alot of information to take in, and of course, the story keeps changing. For example, the ‘human shield’ that they kept referring to was actually a woman who was caught in the crossfire. And, for those who are MORBIDLY awaiting the photos of a dead Bin Laden (who am I kidding, I am a ‘little’ curious also), President OBAMA said today that he WILL NOT release the photos due to ‘possible violence from the Bin Laden supporters. We don’t want to gloat.’ I can appreciate that.
I can also appreciate that it took President Obama 3 years to accomplish what President Bush could not do in 8. Now, I realize that some of my followers are Bush supporters, and it so happens that President Bush is now My neighbor. Well, he lives across the freeway, down 2 blocks, make a right, go up 3 streets, turn right, and enter the neighborhood, but it’s still close enough. I wish him no ill will, and look forward to meeting him and his wife very soon..However, facts are facts. This happened on the Obama watch. And, folks, that means something. And, oh, yes, the NAVY SEALS ! I can not wait to see them on the cover of Time Magazine as ‘Men of The Year’. Not knowing what to expect or whether they would come out alive, these Men went in, and ‘executed’ their mission. Well done, gentlemen. Well done.
No need to comment on Sarah ‘Show the Picture’ Palin. All I can say is, she is pretty. I was pleased that the President received due credit from both sides, but once the glow fades..we shall see..
Now, there is one question on my mind. Now, that Bin Laden is dead, what happens now ? Who do we fear ? Who do we hunt ? As most of you, I will never forget September 11. Where I was ? What I was doing ? And, how I felt when I saw the Towers fall. Since that day, we as a country have never been the same. We don’t travel the same. Many of our practices had to be altered, or put under scrutiny because there are so many ‘security clearances.’ And, through it all, one thing was a constant wish..solution…GET BIN LADEN ! Well, now we got him. Are we safe ? Sure,we feel better in the form of justice for those who we lost. But, I am curious as to what other impact this may have on our country. Does this secure Obama’s re-election ? Does the business community feel more confident, therefore maybe a boost in the economy ? This has to mean something. We have to MAKE it mean something. This was not just for revenge.
My personal feeling : Bin Laden had to be captured. He knew he would not ALLOW himself to be taken alive. That wish was the last thing Osama Bin Laden got from the United States.
God Bless the U.S Navy Seals, President Barack Obama, and the United States of America
|Tyler Perry tells Spike Lee “Go Straight To Hell !”|
Well, there goes my nap. This story is a few days old, but I decided to relaunch my Blog and this was the first story that came to mind. Thanks FB friends for your input, as this is something that is worth talking about.
For the full background, visit Huffington Post.
First of all, Tyler. I must admit, I have said some of the same things that Spike has said, but maybe with less venom. I too could probably do with a ‘little’ less something. The truth of the matter is, Tyler Perry has employed more Black Actors in a period of six years, then most studios employ over 2 decades ! The subject matter of Tyler Perry’s films are thought provoking, emotionally charged, and VERY spiritual. It seems that there is really one small factor that Spike and some other people seem to have a problem with. Madea ! The tough, raunchy, southern Black woman, who is in every body’s business, raises every body’s kids, and can cook ! Oh, yeah, that also happens to be Tyler Perry in a dress…OK, I get it. Now, let’s look back: Flip Wilson/Geraldine (Don’t fight the feelin’), Eddie Murphy/The Klumps, Richard Pryor-played multiple characters in Which Way is Up? But, I don’t think any were Female…I am making a point here: The point is, these are some of the greatest Actors and Comedians of our time and they were not afraid to push the envelope. Does Tyler go a little overboard with the joke, sure. Does he ‘degrade’ his race ? I honestly don’t think so. Obviously Tyler Perry’s movies are not for EVERYONE, but they are certainly for someone, because they gross $ 100 million at the Box Office !
Now, Spike. Amos ‘n Andy ? That may be a little extreme, considering that neither of them, went on to become the first Black person to own a major Film Studio. Not them, NOT OPRAH, and, oh, yeah, not you either, Mr. Lee. I also don’t know of another Black Filmmaker having MULTIPLE films gross over $ 100 million dollars. But, that is neither here, nor there. I have seen the majority of Spike Lee’s films. My personal favorites are ’Jungle Fever’ and ‘Malcom X’..Great filming ! There is no doubt that Spike Lee is a pioneer for ‘thinking outside of the box’, and taking risk to get your message out. I have always admired him for that. But, really…honestly, I think that maybe some people just don’t get him. You know, the sub-meanings in some of the films; poetic language that makes the film sound more like a ‘Spoken Word’ performance. It is deep ! And, I like Deep…But, really, sometimes, maybe a little too ‘deep.’
Now, as for this ‘feud’..There is really no equal playing field. Currently, Tyler Perry is the box office draw. Whether in front of the camera, behind it, or both, Brother got it going on. Twenty years ago, the name on every ones lips was Spike Lee. Well, things change.
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|Clarence Thomas and Anita Hill-Time Magazine|
Although I was only a kid when this first happened, I do remember watching the hearings and over the years hearing about this case. When the confirmation hearings were first held, twenty years ago, I remember thinking, ‘ How gross..’ Who would do and say the things that this lady ( Anita Hill) is accusing him of. I also recall hearing views on both sides: ‘ She is lying because she wanted him’…’ She is being used to bring a Black man down..’, or ‘He was a pervert.’.
Fast forward, twenty years later….And, this can of worms has reopened, at the hands of Virginia Thomas, wife of , Supreme Court Justice, Clarence Thomas. Ginny Thomas called Anita Hill (keep in mind that the two have NEVER met) and asked that after all of these years, Ms. Hill should apologize for ‘what she did to her husband..’ PLEASE click the link below…
That brings me to ask one question: IS SHE CRAZY ?! First of all, who makes a call like that after 20 years, and leaves a VOICE MESSAGE ?! If she felt the audacity to make such a request, the very least she should have done is ask for a face to face meeting. Why not, be a real woman and face your husbands’ accuser ? Now, you are probably wondering, whether or not, I believe the accusations that Ms. Hill made against Clarence Thomas. Well, for the record : I BELIEVE EVERY SINGLE WORD !! O.k, we got that out of the way.
I also have to mention the huge change in attitude over this in the last 20 years. I remember vividly hearing people say over and over, ” Why is SHE doing this to him ?” or ‘She must have wanted him.” Now, fast forward 20 years, and those SAME people have switched views and are now very PRO-HILL. What has changed ? I feel that in the early 90′s society and especially the political world were still very MALE dominated. We did not have a woman Secretary of State, nor did we have a woman on the VP Presidential ticket, and talking about ‘things like that’ were still very taboo. But, over the years, we have seen, high school teachers preying on their students, a harsher look at sexual harassment in the workplace, and a call for women to speak out and speak up when they are victimized. Alot has changed in 20 years.
As a young woman, I must admire Ms. Hill for being the ‘voice of a generation’ on this issue. I find it hard to believe that she would put herself through ALL that she has had to endure for the sake of revenge. I think Ginny Thomas is the ONLY one who may think her husband is worth all of that. But, it does make me wonder…if those confirmation hearings were being held today, and Ms. Hill were making those accusations, would Clarence Thomas be sitting on the highest court in the land ?
|Bill O’Reilly on The View|
In case you have not heard ( where have you been ?), but last Thursday on the hit Daytime Talk Show-’ The View’, Bill O’ Reilly made some controversial statements regarding the building of a Muslim Mosque, near ground zero. The statement that it was wrong since ‘Muslims killed us on 911′, caused such rage in co-hosts Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar, that they got up and walked off of the stage. That move, left a stunned Elizabeth Hasslebeck, and Sherri Shepherd….Barbara WaWa on the other hand…seemed a little ticked. “What just happend, should not have happend,’ said BW. ‘We should be able to sit and have discussions on these topics, without getting enraged.’ After an apology from O’Reilly, the ladies returned to the stage and finished the interview.
Now, the fall out. Ratings for both the O’Reilly Factor (shown on Fox network) and The View shot up this week, with O’Reilly milking his spot on the show and replaying the walk out clip, over and over. Some people thought Joy and Whoopi were right to walk out. Some say they were wrong. Some think Barbara should have stood up more for her co-hosts. On today’s episode, BW and the ladies responded to the incident. Here is what they had to say :
Well, since everyone else has had their say…here goes mine :
1. Don’t ever walk off of the job- In all of the years that I have watched that show,I always admired the fact that these ladies speak their mind, and stand their ground with anyone who encounters them. And, since O’Reilly has been on the show before, they knew what he was like, and it makes it more suprising that they stormed off they way they did. But, maybe that’s why I love them….You just never what to expect, but one thing is for sure…They got guts.
2. Barbara Wa Wa ( and I call her that with love) has spent 50 years interviewing some of the most notorious, controversial, and infamous people of this century and she has always managed to maintain grace in any situation. I could tell by the look on her face, when her co-hosts ( and let’s face it- her employees) walked off the job, that she was not at all happy. When she said, ‘That should not have happend’, in translation, I heard : ‘Joy, Whoopi, get your butt back out here,and do your job !’ I can only imagine, the dressing room meeting after that show.
3. There is a serious lack of understanding on the part of some of us in this country. There was once a time when Black people were the enemy…Then it was the Jews…The Catholics…The Irish…The Mexicans…Now, the Muslims. Oh, this was all in America, by the way. I certainly don’t think that all people should be condemned for the acts of some. Just as Timothy McVeigh or David Koresh should not be reflections of all White people. Who ever heard of condemning an entire race, religion, or creed….Certainly not, in America ?