Bulletin to Jimmy Kimmel: Enough is enough, you sadistic jerk.
Flush with his “success” of persuading his most irresponsible viewers to make their own children cry by lying to them about eating all their Halloween candy and then posting the videos of their kids’ emotional distress on YouTube, ABC late night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel has told the same warped people to traumatize their children again, this time by granting the kids the special treat of opening a Christmas gift early, but having a terrible gift (like a half-eaten sandwich) inside. The emotional reactions of the children thus deceived are also, per Kimmel’s directive, videotaped for posterity to inspire mirth on the part of his similarly warped viewers who don’t have children (and thank God for that), because, as we all know, disappointing kids at Christmastime is fun.
This has got to stop. It doesn’t matter if some, like Mediate’s Jon Bershad , think this is “the cruelest, funniest joke ever,” and others, like the Huffington Post’s reviewer, think the pranked children’s misery is “hilarious.” Children are not props for Jimmy Kimmel’s sadistic amusement, and parents who are willing to use their children this way, intentionally spoiling their Christmas anticipation for the entertainment of sadistic strangers, are, to be blunt, rotten, despicable, and untrustworthy parents. Something important—Compassion? Kindness? Empathy? Loyalty? Responsibility? Love? — is absent in their parental make-up, and that void is being cynically exploited by Kimmel, who has crossed the threshold from arrested adolescent to full-fledged villain.
Since Kimmel has twice been rewarded with positive publicity for egging on parents to harm their kids, what can we expect next from Jimmy? Suggesting that parents tell their kids that a beloved pet has died? Maybe telling children that Dad has eaten the family cat–that sounds funny! Or that he’s slaughtered a sibling! N0–better—sold a sibling—no, traded a sibling! For…a stick of butter! A piece of crap…that’s more Jimmy’s style. That should really set them off! Let’s get really creative…let’s tell the kids that grandma has died and is now a zombie! There’s almost no limit to the great YouTube videos one can create when you’re willing to lie to your kids to upset them.
Are child welfare advocates going to just sit around and let this organized assault on families and childhood innocence continue, or will someone make Kimmel’s bosses at Disney—that’s right, Disney—stop him, reprimand him or fire him?
UPDATE: I have started a Facebook page dedicated to condemning this practice by Kimmel, and urging Disney to stop it. You can find the page here.