September 7, 2013
Twitter, Extortion & LeAnn Rimes
My writing about LeAnn took an interesting turn this week. I wrote that I thought her sending encouraging tweets of love to people who were being anti-Semitic, made her just as guilty of hate against me based on my faith as those saying the hate filled things. She did not take it well and the attacks on me were swift, and ultimately an attempt to get me fired from my job writing for jewishjournal.com. I was called a hate blogger and accused of trying to extort LeAnn Rimes. Dear Lord. I think this woman is insane and for her to rally fans to work on her behalf makes her delusional.
Some freak on Twitter named Mary something, who claims to be an attorney, said by my saying if LeAnn dropped her lawsuit against a Special Education teacher and her daughter I would no longer write about her, was extortion. By definition, extortion is criminal offense of unlawfully obtaining money, property, or services from a person, entity, or institution, through coercion. Clearly this “attorney” does not understand what extortion is, but she tweeted it to Ms. Rimes and it was on. The letters started coming, and another Twitter troll named Ginger something led the charge. It was shocking.
People wrote to my editor, they wrote to me, and before I could catch my breath, from laughing, Twitter trolls went crazy demanding I be fired. The fact is I write about Ms. Rimes because this is a blog about reality television and pop culture, and she is someone who anyone writing about these things would write about. I have never lied, and everything I have written about her is based on the words and actions of Ms. Rimes herself. I comment on what she puts out into the universe herself. It is simply my opinion on the things she does, and if she is worried about people having opinions about her she should be more careful.
Not only did they go crazy on me, they also went crazy on my friend Brandi Glanville, saying she was paying me to write about LeAnn. It would appear the average age of LeAnn’s followers on Twitter is about 14. I love Brandi. She is my friend and we talk about important things like raising sons, acne after 40, my broken heart, our search for love, cooking, family, and the advantages of dating Jewish men. We do not discuss Ms. Rimes because she has nothing to do with our friendship. Just as LeAnn has nothing to do with my friendship with Brandi, Brandi has nothing to do with my writing about LeAnn.
I write about LeAnn and I also write about Brandi, because it is my job. While Brandi and me certainly talk about our work, LeAnn simply does not come up in conversation. If Brandi was not friends with people who had unflattering things to say about Ms. Rimes she would have no friends, and if LeAnn were all I spoke about to Brandi, she would not want to be my friend. Brandi is a girl’s girl and she has helped and supported me as a girlfriend should. Our friendship is private and I value her. It is a shame she got sucked into my drama. I do not compromise my work by talking with anyone about what I am going to write. Ever.
There are a lot of people saying a lot of unflattering things about LeAnn Rimes. I am singled out I guess because I have a forum to talk about her on a large scale and I'm not intimidated by her threats. To imply it is extortion however, is quite comical. If these people want to talk about extortion, perhaps they should look to her legal/management team, as they spend a lot of time trying to shut me up. They get paid by the hour to try to take away my free speech, knowing it is impossible, so is charging Ms. Rimes for those services not extortion? It makes no sense and begs the question, why does she care so much? The only reason it bothers her is because it is truth.
For professional people in the entertainment industry to write to the Jewish Journal, their sponsors and affiliates to tell them to fire me is odd. I am writing about what she does in the public. Why are they simply not contacting Ms. Rimes and telling her to get off Twitter? Furthermore, how is it this conflict has anything to do with faith? I am Jewish, I write for a Jewish publication, but my work does not make me a bad Jew, or them bad Jews for printing it. I am a popular writer who happens to be Jewish, and my boss is brave for allowing my voice to be heard.
I work hard. I have a loyal and supportive following who see the humor in what I write. I am also a mother who has raised a child alone. I am a mother, daughter, sister, friend, boss, employer, and Jew. Perhaps if Ms. Rimes were a mother she would think twice about trying to get a mother fired, or punishing a mother with 6 children who teaches children with special needs into financial hardship by suing her for something that was her own fault. Ms Rimes has, in my opinion, lost her way, is out of control, and using her crazy to get crazier to harrass me.
It is because I am decent that I put the needs of others before my own, and tell Ms. Rimes that if she drops her lawsuit against Kim Smiley I will stop writing about her. It is not extortion. It is decency. This is how I make my living and frankly she is good for business, but Kim Smiley is more important and if my taking Rimes off my list of topics helps her, I will. I’m a giver like that. To those plotting to sue or give ultimatums to my editor in an attempt to get him to fire me, I simply say whatever. I look forward to hearing from you and will try not to laugh.
Important to clarify that my blogs about LeAnn Rimes are not mean, they are truth. Leann's lawsuit against Kim and Lexi Smiley is mean, and not truth. I am not saying I will stop writing mean and negative blogs about her if she drops the case. I am saying I will not write about her at all. I will leverage the distress my blog causes her to help Kim Smiley. It's not brain surgery, or extortion, it is kindness. If she can do the right thing I will leave her alone, even though she is someone I am paid to write about.
There is a lot of gossip going on right now about Ms. Rimes and if I were a gossip writer I would be all over it. I will leave the breaking gossip news to the fearless and funny @Just_Say_Jenn and stick to giving commentary on shows and people we love to watch. I am proud of my work, appreciate those who read it, and am grateful for an editor who fights for my voice to be heard. At the end of the day I feel pity for Ms. Rimes. Her career has stalled, her husband has strayed, and she is unable and unwilling to simply keep quiet, and keep it real.