There’s something I forgot to say yesterday when I posted the National Enquirer‘s photo of Whitney Houston in her casket.
See, I was so worked up by the fact that these guys sneaked a cell phone in solely for the sake of capturing a blurry, inglorious photo of a celebrity corpse. But, as some of you have pointed out, my criticism seemed hypocritical because Crushable had also published that same photo.
For the most part, the comments section of the post has been dedicated to remembering the diva, but some of you took exception with us:
The distinction I want to make, to separate Crushable from the Enquirer, is that in this taboo situation they were proactive whereas we were reactive. We have neither the resources nor the inclination to obtain this illicit cell-phone pic. But once that news is online, we can’t not comment on it.
And that’s what I had a real problem with—that the Enquirer made the decision to acquire this photo by unethical means in the first place, that they couldn’t leave well enough alone. But just like most of our commenters, I was incredibly curious about what Whitney looks like in death. We all wanted to see if Whitney, who had struggled with addiction and a floundering career, could have finally found peace. That’s why we’re having this conversation in the post.
Furthermore, commenter Gina makes an excellent point: Part of what makes Whitney’s photo such a charged matter is that her family had a closed-casket funeral and made the viewing private.
It’s a difficult call in these situations, whether the family should relinquish control over to the star’s fans or if their dedication and CD/iTunes purchases mean nothing at the end of the day. But the strange push-and-pull, of a live-streamed funeral versus secretively protecting actual photos, certainly created a situation where someone could profit because of fans wanting what they couldn’t have.
What I was too distracted to say yesterday — echoing what so many of you have already taken the time to comment — is that Whitney looks beautiful.