Tuned In

Dead Tree Alert: Citizen Anna

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Maybe Tuned In readers don’t need to be pointed to my essay on Anna Nicole Smith in the new TIME magazine, since it’s essentially an expanded version of this blog post. But think of it as the DVD director’s cut.

There is one other thought I didn’t manage to work into the piece. Was anyone else bothered by the sneering classism in the Anna Nicole coverage? She was always a target for this sort of thing–for instance, there was the famous “White-Trash Nation” cover that New York magazine put her on–but her death especially reminded me that class bias is the one socially acceptable prejudice remaining in America. The “white trash” stuff comes up a lot in connection with Britney Spears too, and it’s one of the few reasons I’m still able to sympathize with her.

I don’t want to make Anna Nicole out as some sort of victim here–people are responsible for their own actions no matter what their background, and it seems a lot of her dirt-poor history was her own personal mythmaking anyway. And it’s not as if Paris Hilton gets a free pass.

Anyway, it’s probably about time to let the matter rest. Even if the legal system won’t do the same for Anna Nicole’s remains.