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Fame led Heene to hoax


As aspirations rise, ethics often fall
Library of Congress

He had a taste of fame but wanted more. It’s not far fetched to believe that Richard Heene’s taste of celebrity, acquired by appearing on “Wife Swap”, infected him with the virus celebrityitus. After all, one appearance wasn’t enough, so he signed his whole family up for a second episode. Then there were clues he was trying to convince producers to give him his own show.

This drive for camera time led to an elaborate and deceiving  runaway balloon scheme that attracted media attention worldwide. Whether his wife, Mayumi encouraged the hoax or was an unwilling participant is not clear, but it’s obvious that the desire for fame and fortune were the motivating factors. Admit it, we’ve all yearned for public attention in one-way or another. Professional recognition, artistic success, or the opportunity to see ourselves on the little screen and be recognized by strangers does give the ego a little boost, unless, of course you’re featured on an episode of “Cheaters” or seen coming out of the courthouse surrounded by an angry mob.

We’re often called on to support a loved one's dream of fame and fortune, like the cousin trying to make it as an actor or the friend completely focused on being the next WWE superstar. While some are worthy pursuits, many are hopeless causes which leads to the question of the week:

How far are you willing to go to help your partner achieve his or her dreams? Will your support be endless, or would you set limits on the amount of time, money and sacrifice you’re willing to make in the pursuit of the dream?

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