If this week's cover of Star Magazine is any indication, Robert Hoffman is depending on the world being shocked by his claims that Kate Gosselin abused her children so that he can sell copies of his book. My bet is that this “shocking” revelation will blow over by next week and, as usual, nothing will have happened to help the kids. Why? Because those of us who've followed this story for years know these allegations are not shocking at all. In fact, the abuse and neglect of the eight kids over the years is well documented and the authorities and their relatives, including, it pains me to say, in my opinion their father, have consistently neglected to step in and help them.
My blog has provided many examples of child abuse and neglect over the past three years, and I went viral when I interviewed Eric Roberts after he called Kate Gosselin a “child abuser” almost two years ago. And that nasty wooden spoon? It might be news to the general public but it's been the subject of many online comments, jabs and jokes over the years. In my book, Jon & Kate Plus Eight: The Selling of the Gosselins, my interview with Becky Dilley (mother of sextuplets who were not exploited, sold or made famous without their permission) highlighted the fact that the Gosselin kids could only have been put into the positions they were because their parents signed them up for it. It only makes sense that a parent who has the potential to be abusive, or at the very least neglectful, is much more likely to subject their child(ren) to something traumatic like reality TV than a parent who does not.
Hoffman's “shocking” disclosure meriting space in Star Magazine highlights how seriously we, as a society, tend to take physical abuse compared to other forms of abuse. We enjoyed watching these kids being neglected, bullied, paraded before pedophiles, and having their most private moments splayed out for public consumption and amusement for years, and it's all available at any time online and on DVDs so that they will never be able to escape it, but now they're suddenly being called abused children. Please, if a mother does the many things to her children that have long been documented on my blog and elsewhere, why are we shocked that their mother also hits them, and why do we only recognize that these children have been abused when hitting is disclosed?
I haven't heard about anything in Hoffman's book that hasn't already been covered in Al Walentis's or mine. It does sadden me though that he is only working hard to get the issue of the children being abused out to the public now that he has a book to sell. Hoffman was supposedly friends with Jon for some time, but if he really cared about the kids and had concrete evidence that they'd been physically abused, why didn't he do something to actually help the eight instead of now subjecting them to the additional trauma that will likely result from his selling his story to the tabloids ?
Article first published as “Shocking” That Kate Gosselin Hit Kids? Unfortunately, Not Really. on Technorati.