CHICAGO, February 18, 2013 — Alec Baldwin, aka Public Menance #1, did it again. The actor grabbed New York Post reporter Tara Palmeri, telling her he wanted to “choke her to death.”
Why? She was asking him questions on the street about a lawsuit filed against his wife’s yoga business. The reporter captured the conversation on tape.
Baldwin then verbally assaulted Post photographer G.N. Miller with racially charged, explicit, and profane epithets. Baldwin even threw in an antediluvian epithet, “coon.”
When Miller identified himself as a retired NYPD detective Baldwin called him a “crackhead” and an “ex-con.” Baldwin then told passersby that the photographer was a “crackhead” and “ex-con.”
The actor apparently has a problem keeping his hands off reporters and keeping his language clean.
His representative naturally denied the charges. As usual with this particular public menace we are supposed to move on and forget the whole thing.
Baldwin is a popular star. He can act however he wants, can’t he? Well, no, not in a civilized country.
Alec Baldwin has a history of verbally and physically attacking photographers in New York and California. He violently attacked a New York Daily News photographer in June. That paper now refers to him as a “serial smacker.”
No matter how many photographs and videos show Baldwin committing violent and threatening acts, he continually gets away with savage behavior. Alec Baldwin is a celebrity, you see, and violent assault is just part of his schtick, a part of what makes his credit card commercials so endearing.
He is Alec Baldwin, Alec Baldwin! This public menace can do and say whatever he wants on the streets of New York. He can assault photographers and punch them, grab reporters and scream at them, threaten and insult anyone who dares cross him on the street. Then he can go on his merry way with no repercussions. There are no arrests, just investigations that are filed away gathering dust.
Baldwin is above the law. He is immune to the laws that apply to ordinary citizens ‒ laws for little people, not celebrities ‒ and immune to criticism for his use of racist and homophobic slurs, inoculated from criticism by his sterling liberal credentials.
As long as they refuse to arrest, charge and try Baldwin, the police and the courts enable and encourage him. As long as he is never charged, he reasonably assumes that he never will be. His outrageous behavior will continue unchecked, and perhaps become more extreme. If no one stops him, it is possible a horrible tragedy will ensue, and Baldwin may seriously injure his next victim. Or perhaps the next victim will just decide enough is enough, fight back, and win. Sometimes there is no justice, just us.
Because Baldwin is so popular, the man who defends himself from this celebrity thug may find himself arrested while Baldwin’s adoring fans shower him with sympathy. Powerful media friends would defend Baldwin, and other celebrity savages would support him. The criminal might become the victim, and vice versa.
And if Baldwin should suffer facial injuries, Heaven help his victim.
Law enforcement authorities should stop being cowards and treat celebrity savages just like all other violent criminals who cause mayhem. Lock them up, indict them, and make them face justice.
It is only right that civilized people going about their personal and professional business be protected from celebrity savages. Civilized people should have some expectation of safety from predatory public figures. In any war between civilized people and celebrity savages we must support civilized people. Savage stars must be defeated and punished. They must learn there are severe consequences for their uncivilized criminal activities. They must be treated like common criminals. That is all they are.
An example must be made so that other celebrities will fall in line. Alec Baldwin is the perfect menace to make an example of, the poster boy of celebrity criminal behavior.
Alec Balwin is a violent angry train wreck waiting to happen, a disaster in the making. He is out of control, whether his behavior is purposeful, the result of mental instability or substance abuse. Some authority somewhere has to say “enough,” slap him in irons, make him do the perp walk, and bring him to justice.
Send him to the gray bar hotel.
The “urgency of now” is upon the American people to start a national conversation on common sense celebrity control. Congress, Vice President Biden, and President Obama should immediately take the issue of celebrity violence under consideration. Celebrity violence is the issue of our time.
In his travels the president should speak out against celebrity violence, assault celebrities, unregulated and high-capacity celebrities, and the very real threat they pose to the nation. He should ask congress for a bill, and promise to sign it. He has a powerful bully pulpit to attack celebrity bullies.
Doctors should be required to ask children if their parents are celebrities or if they come in contact with celebrities in their homes. Celebrities should be banned from certain places, like establishments that serve alcohol, within 250 feet of schools and playgrounds, and should be accompanied by minders when out in public. No one should be allowed to employ a celebrity without first undergoing a thorough background investigation. This is just common sense legislation.
And it would also create new jobs as a side benefit.
Politicians can and should fight back to repel the entertainment industry lobbyists who protect their molly-coddled charges. They should be vilified, demeaned and dehumanized as the evil special interest they really are. The lobbyists exist merely to protect assault celebrities rights to savagely prey upon civilized people. We need new celebrity control laws now because there is no time to enforce the current laws on the books. Those laws that apply to all of us little people. Maybe it is time to consider a ban on assault celebrities. What need is there for assault celebrities?
Celebrities and other public figures are no better than the rest of us. We are all equal before the law. We all have the same equal responsibilities to obey the law. Celebrities have a social responsibility to act civilized. If they want to act like savages they can be treated like savages. Put them in prison cages. Let them loudly tell their bunkmates how big, tough, and powerful they are.
Peter V. Bella is a retired Chicago Police Officer, freelance journalist and photojournalist, cook, and raconteur. He likes to be the irreverent sharp stick that pokes, prods, and annoys.
His opinions are his and his alone. Mr. Bella is a member of the National Press Photographers Association, Online News Association, Chicago Headline Club, and the Society for Professional Journalists.
This article is the copyrighted property of the writer and Communities @ WashingtonTimes.com. Written permission must be obtained before reprint in online or print media. REPRINTING TWTC CONTENT WITHOUT PERMISSION AND/OR PAYMENT IS THEFT AND PUNISHABLE BY LAW.