Monday, 23 February 2009

The Redeeming of Miss Goody

By Sarah Maid of Albion

On Sunday, as anyone resident in the United Kingdom will know, the reality TV star and terminal cancer victim, Jade Goody married her handsome, if troubled, younger lover Jack Tweed in a no-expenses spared ceremony and reception, with the setting provided by rock superstar Elton John and the gown donated free by Harrods owner Mohamed al Fayed.

With the national media crowding around, straining for the chance to catch a glimpse of the nation's latest favourite celebrity couple, the proceedings took place behind closed doors, this being due to the fact that the publication rights have been sold to OK Magazine and the "Living" TV channel, as the dying star seeks to earn enough money in her final months to support her two young sons, by a previous younger lover, after her death

In the course of what it seems will be a tragically short life, Jade Goody has, within her homeland, joined that tiny group of celebrities instantly known by a single Christian name. If you mention "Kate" a any number of possibilities spring to mind, Kate Winslet's Oscar triumph notwithstanding. However, mention "Jade" in Britain and everyone knows who you mean.

The degree to which this young woman's plight has touched the nation's heart is demonstrated not only the fact that her photograph no adorns on the front pages of even our more serious newspapers, but the Justice minister has seen fit to waive the 7:00 PM curfew requirements of her grooms parole conditions, enabling him to spend his wedding night with his new bride.

There is speculation that Jade may agree to allow her final moments to be filmed, in order to further secure her children's future, and if she does, the purchaser can be assured of a large and tearful audience for the end of what must be, by any standards, a truly bizarre life.

It is even more bizarre when one considers that it is only two short years since these same newspapers now gushing with praise for Jade's courage and paying a fortune for a single photograph of her, were indulging in a hate campaign targeted at the destruction of this same young woman, who, to a hack, they referred to as "Britain's most hated woman".

For it was then, in 2007, what that same media declared Jade guilty of one of the greatest crimes of our age.

Appearing on that year's Celebrity Big Brother, Jade, the then nineteen year old Jack Tweed, who, together with her mother, had accompanied Jade into the house, and two other young female contestants of a similar socio-economic background decided to take exception to a fourth female contestant, from a different socio-economic background, whom they apparently considered to be, false, "stuck-up" and altogether too pleased with herself.

As any fan of reality TV will know, this is not an uncommon occurrance in such an artificial and claustrophobic situation, where personal likes and dislikes become exaggerated in an environment which is uniquely conducive to conflict and the taking of sides. It was certainly not the first time that such a antagonism has arisen on Big Brother.

However, what made this conflict different in the eyes of the media, and the ever vigilant guardians of social cohesion, was that whilst Jade, Tweed and their two companions were white, the contestant whom they had taken against was the strikingly beautiful, but clearly rather pleased with herself, Bollywood star Shilpha Shetty.

To the media and assorted zealots this automatically meant that, rather than a conflict of characters or classes, the bickering took on an entirely different and more sinister element. To them, this was unquestionably racially motivated bullying, and as Jade was the most outspoken (and famous) of the four, she was viewed as racist in chief, as such she was singled out for special criticism.

Unaware of the controversy swirling outside "the house" which had now taken on international proportions, the bickering and bitcing continued, at one point descending into a shouting march, which was repeatedly re-broadcast over the following days, carefully edited to highlight Jade's role as victimiser and Shilpha as victim.

To the obvious irritation to the forces of multicultural purity there was a marked lack of racist language involved in the conflict, except from fellow contestant Jermaine Jackson, who referred to Jade and her friends as white trash, although he was immediately excused on account of being black. Muttered allegations were made that Jack Tweed had used a "word" in a conversation which had not been broadcast, but, despite 24 hour filming, footage never appeared, and it was eventually admitted that the word, although offensive, was not racist, in any event Jack Tweed was not a celebrity in his own right, he had no careeer to destroy and was, therefore, not the target the press were aiming at.

Yet, for all her famed lack of education or sophistication, for days Jade failed to utter a syllable which event the most committed UAF zealot could construe as racist. Then, at last, those crowding round the scaffold got what they had been waiting for, when, in an angry outburst, well out of Shilpha Shetty's hearing, Jade blurted out the "P" word. …uh? … no not THAT "P" word. In a moment of anger, Jade referred to Ms Shetty as "Shilpha Poppadom" and the forces of racial outrage exploded.

Across the nation, television screens were alive with people explaining how offensive this reference to a quick fried, flatbread, wafer was. Indeed, I recall seeing one particular Asian lady puffing out her ample bosom and asking in a decidedly Lady Bracknell like tone, "Would they call her Jade Fish and Chips?"

To which the obvious answer would be "probably not, but who'd give a toss if they did?", but in Britain in 2007, such an answer would be unthinkable.

As a result Jade became a pariah, her later tearful attempts to make amends were scorned, and she became the first Celebrity big Brother contestant who's departure from the house was filmed in silence, without the usual cheering or catcalling crowd, so fearful were the programme makers that the public reaction to her might actually be violent.

Now officially the most hated woman in Britain, a title previously only bestowed on child murderers and Margaret Thatcher, Jade's career was in ruins, and was hurting into that dark void where fallen stars, broken on the wheel of political correctness are consigned.

Having uttered the word "Poppadom", Jade was cast as a villain, guilty of an unforgivable sin. All but unemployable, her celebrity endorsement income drying up and the once thriving sales of her personal brand of perfume non-existent, Jade had to look overseas to earn a living for herself an her children, her every appearance dogged by recriminations and the ghost of Big Brother.

She was still walking the march of shame when, whilst appearing on the Mumbai version of Big Brother again with Shilpa Shetty in an attempt to show how non-racist she was, she received news of the positive cancer diagnosis which will eventually kill her. Again, as with so much in her life the news was relayed on live TV.

With the news of that diagnosis, Jade's career underwent its second major reversal, from scorned pariah one moment, she went to much loved national icon the next, with a far larger fan base even than she had before. As I said in an earlier article realities can change and Jade's reality again changed overnight, It seems certain that when, in the next few months she loses her battle against the ravaging disease which is rapidly overwhelming her, she will die as a larger than life and well loved star.

Does the short life of Jade Goody tell us anything valuable about the world we now live in? A creature of the celebrity age, without any perceptible talent, she became rich and famous, merely by being herself, then it was being herself which all but destroyed her, before, by being physically destroyed herself, she has found some form of salvation.

And what of those who shrilly screamed for her ruin, who wanted her broken to make an example of her because she had dared to dislike someone whom society requires her to embrace. How do they feel now, watching her as she plays out her final scenes in the public spotlight, do they feel any qualms for what they tried to do to her? I doubt it.

Sadly, perhaps all it does teach us is that in the distorted and unnatural world we currently inhabit, when you are accused of racism, whether those claims have merit or not, it will take a death sentence to redeem you.



Anonymous said...

Excellent article. Jade was a product of dumbed down trash media; entertaining in a bizarre way to the general public and appealing to the lowest common denominator. People dont change after all.
Ironies abound of course. She was herself a 1/4 Afro carribean as anyone could tell by looking at her. To be accused of racism was therefore bizarre.
As for villains, well two spring to mind. The Fleet street rags and that slimeball Max Clifford. Both are institutions which are characterised by greed ,humbug and malevolence.
Lets hope Jade has comfort in her last days and finds peace. It would also be nice if her husband and children after her passing were left alone and disappeared from the public gaze.

Anonymous said...

Stress and worry can cause cancer.I just wonder if if was the media who is ultimently responsible for her death.

Mike Green (Editor) said...

I must admit that I have been 'told off' here.
I had my own views on Jade, and until now they had not been very pleasant.
Now however this has changed. And I have certainly learned a lesson.

mark said...

Well it hasn't affected the career prospects of the imams filmed in Channel 4's Undercover Mosque. They preached hatred a million times worse than anything Jade Goody said and I'm not aware that any have been charged by the police, booted out by their "moderate" muslim congregation or had assorted self-loathing White liberals on their case.

Let's hope that Jade finds peace, comfort and financial security for her children during however long she has left on this earth.

GreenPleasantLand said...

Excellent, excellent, excellent article... something my girlfriend and I have been discussing for a very long time.

BFB said...

Magnificent post Sarah. I've said it before and I'll say it again, you should be writing for the BNP website.


Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Celtic Morning. Anon22.22 Just what I have been thinking. Obviously Jade has never, until now, been a person of strong character and it is more than likely that the events and orchestrated uproar after her "racial outburst" played a huge part in her rapid physical decline. Once again our collective media should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves.Personally I was one of those who hated her success and all that she stood for in this modern world but she has since, in terrible adversity, proven herself to be a bigger person that her public image suggested. Miracles are few and far between these days but, like everyone else, I wish her well and hope that she achieves her aim of leaving her two little children well provided for,financially and morally, in their future years so that their lives will be less chaotic and more rewarding than their mothers..

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure Jade Goody can be classed as white her father was half Jamacian, remember her first time in the house and the media commented on her nose and lips (thinking she was white) and she called them "racist" because her dad was "half Jamacian", it reminds me of the Princess Di thing before she died the Media columists (especially that Jane Moore) was absolutely horrible to her then after she died they sought to capture the public mood. I can't agree with you Sarah, i do not like Goody i remember a few years ago she physically assaulted two elderly women in a cinema, later charges were dropped (hmm paid to drop charges)? My theory is because she came from a troubled background her mum was a prostitute and Heroin addict, her dad a drug taker and seller (he OD a few years ago) she has become addicted to the "love" and "attention" showed by the people, a substitute for what she never had. The MSM built her up as a cheap idol for the Sheeple to Worship, then the knocked her down over the Shilpagate just to flex their muscles. Then they realised that there is money to be made out of her death so they are exploiting that, especially Max Clifford. She is a bone given to the masses to keep them distracted over the recession (she serves a few purposes)The girl has huge anger issues, understandable probably if you take into account her background, i also would say she has learning difficulties, the Media loved the thought of people laughing at her. I think its worrying that people want to follow her and tune in as some sort of Entertainment to watch her literaly die, its voyerism, and for her to say its for her kids is a lie, she is already a multi-millionaire, as i've said she is addicted to the "love" and "attention" something that was lacking as a child, i don't share your sentiment of Jade Goody. politicalMIZZ