November 3rd, 2009
02:28 PM ET

Defending Jon Gosselin!

With the World Series ending soon, America will soon be able to focus on its other national pastime: bashing Jon Gosselin. Ever since Gosselin and his wife Kate split, and Jon started partying it up with a much younger woman,  many have  gleefully ridiculed him as a negligent father, a wannabe playboy and your basic Class-A dog.

Now, Jon’s admitting his sins. This past weekend he appeared before cameras at a New York synagogue to apologize to his ex-wife for his behavior. In choosing such a public forum, Jon was also offering an implicit apology to those of us who’ve followed, and disapproved of, his post-breakup antics. It’s an apology we should accept. It may be my basic sense of fair play (or my Y chromosome) talking here, but Jon Gosselin is getting a bum rap. Here’s why:

1.)    We all saw this coming -  Back when the titular family of  “Jon & Kate Plus 8” was still intact, viewers picked up on two simple facts: 1.) the eight kids were adorable and 2.) Kate wasn’t very nice to Jon. Kate habitually bossed, belittled and berated Jon, often in front of the children. Jon and Kate’s troubling marital dynamic became so entrenched in popular culture that even non –watchers became aware of it. In fact, some people I know who are now on the “I Hate Jon” bandwagon used to actually pity Jon and openly wonder when Kate’s antics would make him snap. Well, after their split, Jon did snap; he careened headfirst into a boozy sea of European yacht parties, willing young women and ugly Ed Hardy T-shirts. Acceptable behavior for a father of eight? No. Understandable behavior for someone first tasting independence after a long and one-sided relationship? Definitely.

2.)    Breakups are hard.  We all know that people sometimes act out a bit after they’ve ended a long relationship.  It’s a painful process that sometimes takes years to work through. If Jon’s truly over it now, as he says he is, it will have only taken him a little over four months. Again, not an ideal situation but an understandable one.

3.)    Kate hasn’t been perfect either.   Jon hasn’t cornered the market on questionable post-divorce behavior. Kate’s rushed on to almost every major daytime TV show to complain about divorce matters best settled privately in court. And by giving tacit approval to TLC’s ruthless campaign to savage Jon’s reputation and salvage the “Kate Plus 8” empire, Kate arguably has complicated this split every bit as much as Jon (who, it should be noted, helped build that empire) has. No, two wrongs don’t make a right. But when two people each stack up an impressive list of “wrongs” and only one gets called on it, something isn’t right.

It’s only natural that we take sides in the Jon and Kate breakup; we each have our own experiences, values, and ideas about relationships that can’t help but influence how we react to this very public split. But by endlessly bashing one or both parties in this saga, we ignore a sad truth: that Jon and Kate both are doing what they think is best for themselves and their children during a terrible ordeal – an ordeal that many of us have either witnessed or experienced ourselves. Yes, Jon and Kate have each earned some well-deserved criticism for their actions. Still, they both deserve some compassion as well.

November 2nd, 2009
07:58 PM ET

Hey Jon! Keep it private!

Jon Gosselin took part in what was being billed as an intimate discussion with his new spiritual advisor, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach Sunday  night at a New York City Synagogue. The point of Jon’s appearance was to come clean about his personal battle with the pitfalls of fame and to own up his bad boy behavior since he and Kate announced their divorce in June. He earnestly apologized to his soon-to-be ex-wife Kate Gosselin, saying, “I want to apologize to Kate in private. I'll apologize to her for openly having relationships in the public eye.”

Jon revealed this earnest pomp and circumstance, these so-called heartfelt apologies, before the hoards of TV news cameras. There, Jon said with a straight face, “I think I'm just misunderstood. I'm not a fame seeker.”

When a man who is smack dab in the media frenzy decides it’s time to make amends with his soon-to-be ex-wife and focus on being a better father to his 8 children, the first step is indeed to go to the ex and apologize. But Jon’s first step was make a big stink about his intentions to apologize to the cameras he claims he isn’t seeking out.

I applaud Jon for hooking up with the likes of Rabbi Shmuley Boteach and attempting to get his priorities in life straight. But I say, Jon, as you gauge your so-called “moral compass,” the only way anyone is going to believe that you are a reformed man is to take care of your private business  – in private. Then if you and Kate choose to come forward to let the world know you are on better terms – so be it. But until then, cut the talk, stop doing these panel discussions on being a “moral” father and just start being the man you keep claiming you are.

October 30th, 2009
01:25 PM ET

Please save Jon Gosselin from himself!

From: "Showbiz Tonight" producer and mother of two

Date: October 30, 2009

Jon Gosselin is troubled. He is troubled that, “the media has accepted as true the scurrilous rumor that (he) would appear in a reality television program with Nadya Suleman” - aka Octumom. You remember her, the woman who had 8 kids! She already had 6 kids before this spectacular birth. She’s getting ready for her docu-reality show to make some cash to raise her brood of 14.

Anyway, I digress! Back to Jon Gosselin! In this brand new press release, released to, well, the universe, Jon says this “scurrilous rumor” is “utterly false”. False! Thank goodness Jon! We really hope you are keeping your word on that one, because doing a reality show with Octumom while you are trying to reconnect with your, “spiritual, more altruistic self with regular study sessions and counseling with Rabbi Shmuley Boteach” might get a little hairy!

Oops I jumped ahead! Jon’s brand new press release includes a bombshell! The reality show says he is going to change his ways! Jon says that he will publicly apologize to Kate, and his 8 kids with the help of Rabbi Boteach, at a forum inside a New York City Synagogue.

But here’s why I think Jon needs saving from himself! Once again Jon is going through public channels to do something that should be private. Jon says he wants to reconnect with his kids. Jon, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist or a Rabbi for that matter to advise you that there are easier ways to reconnect with your kids!

Get on the floor with them, roll around with them and for heaven’s sake, ask YOUR KIDS how THEY have been feeling since you and Kate called it quits! No spiritual adviser on the planet will be able to tell you how your kids are feeling! By golly, Jon! Save yourself and get back to Pennsylvania and start bonding with those adorable kids. You want them to smile?! You want them to love you?! Do yourself a favor, and dress up in some ridiculous Halloween costume and make them laugh at you because you are a fun daddy, and not because you have become a laughingstock.

October 16th, 2009
03:29 PM ET

Jon Gosselin responds to lawsuit!

BREAKING NEWS!

Showbiz Tonight just received this statement from Jon Gosselin’s attorney, Mark Jay Heller, Esq. regarding the lawsuit that TLC filed against Jon.

“Apparently, TLC has elected to initially litigate this case In the Court of Public Opinion, rather than the Circuit Court for Montgomery County Maryland because neither Jon nor I have been served with legal pleadings or informed by TLC of the instant litigation.

Remarkably, instead, I read the alleged Complaint on the internet, since it would appear that Discovery and TLC chose to pander and publicize their weak feeble and baseless claim to the media rather than providing the Defendant with appropriate notice through the traditional judicial process.

Jon will vigorously defend against this baseless action, assuming Discovery and TLC choose to go forward with their claim by legally serving him with notice, and we are confident that through the course, of litigation it will clearly be evident that Discovery and TLC exploited, manipulated and abused the Gosselins’ vulnerability and financial hardship.

We believe that the contract will be unenforceable in light of the fact that Discovery and TLC initially had Jon execute a complicated, complex and sophisticated agreement at a time when he had no legal representative. In any event, when TLC and Discovery ended the program “Jon & Kate plus eight” they also effectively terminated the purported contract and accordingly, any rights or obligations they perceived existed concerning Jon’s conduct or actions, rights or privileges from that point forward were also terminated.

The contract was against Public Policy because we believe Discovery and TLC violated Pennsylvania Child Labor Laws, failed to seek appropriate State and Municipal Permits, failed to pay the Gosselins fair consideration, and intentionally circumvented their responsibility to specifically designate legal and lawful compensation to the eight infant children, which Is now the subject of an investigation by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry and could result In summary Criminal Proceedings.

The purported Contract was also grossly overreaching and restrictive attempting to abridge the most basic Constitutional Right that all American citizens have of Freedom of Speech. Discovery and TLC has treated Jon Gosselin like a dog by attempting to keep him on a leash and muzzle him and deny the father of eight the opportunity to earn a livelihood to support his family.

All of the aforesaid, clearly, in our opinion, renders the alleged contract as null and void, unenforceable and unconscionable.

Clearly, this litigation has heralded in the battle of “David” against “Goliath” and Jon Gosselin fully intends to stand firm, protect his family and defend against TLC and Discovery who have been rumored to have enjoyed over $106 million dollars in revenue for one quarter, purportedly attributed to the success of the program “Jon & Kate plus eight’

This litigation is clearly a tactic that Discovery and TLC have initiated in furtherance of their hunger to jump back on the gravy train, but Jon Gosselin has decided to put the breaks on the Discovery and TLC trainwreck.”

Be sure to tune in to Showbiz Tonight for all of the latest developments in this breaking story-11pm ET/PT- don’t miss it!

October 16th, 2009
11:12 AM ET

TLC sues Jon Gosselin!

This just in to the Showbiz Tonight newsroom- we just received this release from TLC regarding their lawsuit against Jon Gosselin:

TLC announced today it has filed a lawsuit against Jon Gosselin for breaching the contract he signed for the production of “Jon & Kate Plus Eight.”  

The network has been trying privately and patiently for months to get Jon to honor the contract he signed and to comply with his obligations relating to public appearances and statements.   Those efforts have been unsuccessful.

The Washington, DC law firm of Williams & Connolly LLP has been retained to represent the network in the litigation.

For more on this breaking story, tune in to Showbiz Tonight at 11pm ET/PT on HLN- don’t miss it!

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