Christina Aguilera Sells Her Baby
Okay, so Christina Aguilera didn't actually sell her baby, at least not in the total legal sense as far as I'm aware. What she has done (for some bizarre reason), is sell pictures of him to People Magazine. This article is therefore about the celebrity baby picture phenomenon, or in other words, the practice of selling pictures of yourself and your new baby to the highest bidder.
This has become a seemingly accepted practice amongst celebrities. There was a huge bidding war for the first pictures of Suri Cruise, and Shiloh Jolie Pitt drew a fair bit of attention as well. Let's not forget Sean Preston and Jayden James Spears, and I am betting that Jamie Lynn Spears will attract a decent fee for the pictures of her baby when it is born as well. (There are rumors that she has already struck a one million dollar deal for these pictures, however it is being denied by the Spears clan. Of course, they probably would have denied she was having unprotected sex in the months before she fell pregnant, so let's not pay too much attention to their denials.)
There's even several site dedicated to celebrity baby pictures and baby affairs (though I should really state that with less of a tone of surprise, given that there are sites dedicated to almost every conceivable thing in the Universe.)
Here's the real question though. Is it okay for this practice to take place? These are after all, infants, who many times are exploited by their money grubbing, fame seeking parents long before they reach the age of consent. Is it really okay to allow your baby to be used to sell magazine covers?
Oh, you might say, not all celebrities sell the pictures of their baby. In the case of Suri Cruise for instance, the magazine that published those pictures paid allegedly paid nothing for them. The magazine of course, was Vanity Fair, which gives Suri a pretty impressive modeling resume before she even understands what the words mean. Though she allegedly did that first shoot pro bono (personally, I have my doubts that there was absolutely no compensation involved), Suri was later signed on to be the face of Baby GAP. I am guessing her little bank account is going to be stuffed full of lovely money after she finishes a campaign or two for them.
Returning to the original celebrity mother this piece focused on, even Christina Aguilera sold pictures of her son Max to People Magazine. This is the same magazine that reports on Lindsay's drunken sex binges, and prints pictures of bi polar Britney's genitalia. What on earth would possess her to think that such a magazine would be a suitable venue to introduce her son to the world? What made her think that such an act was even necessary, or indeed, appropriate? (Admittedly, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, and Britney and Kevin Federline also chose People magazine as the venue in which their babies would be pimped to the world, but three wrongs do not a right make.)
As adults, these celebrities have the right to whore their bodies out as they choose. But surely there should be protections in place to protect their offspring form being thrust into the limelight before they even gain control of their bodily functions, and profited from by their parents. I will give some allowance for the argument, that like all parents, celebrities think their baby is the most amazing thing in the world and wish to show it off to all and sundry. That does make sense, however it does not change the fact that these children, though no doubt loved, are still being treated as little more than products by the magazines which objectify and trade on their parents. They are on the covers of the magazines because those covers sell copies. Surely that's not right.
Can't we just let babies be babies?