The alternatives to heightened hospital security are all worse for other new parents.

The XX Factor
What Women Really Think
Jan. 10 2012 10:45 AM

Lay Off Beyoncé and Jay-Z

Beyonce
Did Beyoncé cause chaos while giving birth at a New York hospital?

Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images

Bryan, I definitely get the frustrations of the new parents who had to put up with the extra security in the hospital because they had the misfortune to be there at the same time as Beyoncé, but at a certain point, I wish people would just get a grip. It sounds like the hospital did an excellent job of creating enough security to keep the area from getting clogged up with paparazzi without making it impossible for other parents to maneuver around the hospital. For everyone who thinks that it's a pain to have to go through a couple extra steps to see your baby, imagine what it would be like if they had no security and you had to get around desperate photographers trying to get that million dollar picture of the baby. Sometimes it pays to step back and think of the alternatives before indulging yourself in a self-righteous huff.

Plus, if anybody complaining has purchased an US Weekly, visited a gossip blog, or Googled for pictures of Kim Kardashian's butt x-rays, they're being giant hypocrites. If you don't like the results of the out-of-control paparazzi, don't feed the beast. The ultimate cure for situations like this is for the country as a whole to stop clawing for pictures of private life events of celebrities. What, really, is anyone getting out of seeing pictures of Jay-Z and Beyoncé's baby? Sure, she's probably cute, but all babies are, aren't they? Go look at some non-famous babies. I bet your friends have one or two baby pictures on Facebook you could be "liking" right now. Your friends will probably appreciate it more than Beyoncé or Jay-Z will if you approve of their baby's cuteness. Ironically, it seems that much of the anger from other parents in the hospital stems from feeling like their big birthing event was overshadowed. Maybe they can be mollified with a few more "likes" on Facebook for their baby pictures.

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Honestly, I think the revenge impulse feeds so much of the clamoring for unauthorized celebrity pictures. In fact, I know it, since so much of the tabloid culture seems to be about running pictures designed to shame celebrities for having imperfect body parts, having private sex lives, or going about in public without make-up. The audience seems to be saying, "Yes, you have all this fame and fortune and beauty, celebrities, but we're going to make sure the price you pay is that there's always a camera lurking during your most intimate and private moments, so that we can gawk and judge." In other words, Americans are taking out their rage at the rich by attacking the people who got rich in the most harmless way possible---by making products people like in industries that tend to do better on average with labor practices---while we by and large ignore the people who got rich by destroying our economy and kicking people out of their homes. Not to be a relentless curmudgeon, but I can't help but think of how much better it would be if the people raging at Beyoncé for paying for extra privacy at the hospital turned that rage on the bankers who wrecked this economy and continue to rake in mind-boggling profits without paying any price for what they did.

Amanda Marcotte is a Brooklyn-based writer and DoubleX contributor. She also writes regularly for the Daily Beast, AlterNet, and USA Today. Follow her on Twitter.

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