Thursday, February 3, 2011

Some of you People Really Scare me. Cedric was Robbed!

I was going-to copy and paste some of the comments that I've seen on other sites & blogs about the Lisa/Cedric problem, but instead-of humiliating other bloggers and blog-readers, I'll just paste here what The LA Times had to say about it. It pretty much says what a LOT of you are saying:
"He cast himself as the victim: It was Lisa who woke him up and made him go to the gym with her each morning. It was Lisa and her husband, Ken, who dragged him around as though he were a companion like Jiggy the dog. He was used by them, then thrown to the curb, or so he claimed.It made me wish NeNe Leakes from Atlanta could have made a cameo to set it straight. He mooched off the Vanderpump family. He lived in their home. He drove their cars. And he was 37 years old, still living as a child. Shameful!"-LA Times

Here's a screen-shot of a poll that was taken today:
I don't dislike Lisa and Todd Vanderpump at all. In fact, personally, I thought that the Vanderpumps, along-with Adrienne & Dr. ?, managed to make it through the season virtually unscathed. And maybe that is the problem.  Even-though I respect them, they are wrong. If they did not compensate Cedric properly when he left their home, they took advantage of him. re-capped Part II of the reunion, and they have a video and some quotes:
"...he called them and asked to meet. When they showed up Cedric asked for something they “weren’t prepared to give him” ...
He also complains that he only got compensated in “flowers and puppies” for the work he did for Ken and Lisa..."-Starcasm
What did Cedric ask-for? If he was only paid in flowers and puppies, aside from what he earned while he was on the payroll at their restaurant, I'd say they owe him at least the going-rate for live-in domestic help for however long he lived with them. I guess they weren't prepared to give him any cash?
As a comparison, the blog, I Saw Your Nanny.Com (here), has a pretty regular Saturday feature called, CL-WTF?, where readers report, and comment on recent Craigslist postings throughout the country. The reason I use it as a comparison is because many times, people try to dangle "FREE ROOM AND BOARD", as payment for domestic work.
Responses are made directly to Craigslist, to the would-be slave-drivers who post the advertisements. Comments about WTF? are also made on the I Saw Your Nanny blog, comment-space.
I know it seems a little off-topic, since Cedric was not a nanny, but HUMAN TRAFFICKING is a big problem, all over this world, AND in the USA. The professional Nannys and domestics who keep an eye on the Craigslist postings, and discuss the wages and working conditions for live-in domestic help, have a lot of light that they shed on this problem.Even-if Cedric was living in the lap-of-luxury, he deserves compensation.
Cedric's main job for Lisa was not child-care, but he is definitely, "live-in" help.
What was Cedric's job-title? I know that it was supposed to be a cute running-joke. "Permanent Houseguest", pest, Cato Katlin. ha ha. Was Cedric a Care-Taker? A Companion? Assistant? Personal-Trainer? Man-in-Waiting? Butler? Houseman?
Another fact that many people seem to be including as a generous "gift" from Lisa & Todd to Cedric, his immigration costs to Beverly Hills, probably reveal a guarantee and promise of employment. I don't think that we grant Visas for "permanent house-guests". There are responsibilities that visitors and employers promise when they immigrate.
We have laws in this country to protect citizens, and visitors. One of these laws is the  Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) of 2000. I found a refrence to this law on the Wikipedia page devoted to Indentured Servitude, (which is of course illegal in the USA).
"unlike slaves, servants could look forward to a release from bondage. If they survived their period of labor, servants would receive a payment known as "freedom dues" and become free members of society....

Current legal status 

Article 4 of the United Nation's Universal Declaration of Human Rights (passed in 1948) declares such servitude as illegal, but only national legislation could rectify that illegality. In America, the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) of 2000 extended servitude to cover peonage as well as Involuntary Servitude"-Wikipedia

While we're talking about HUMAN TRAFFICKING, I guess this is a good time to bring another Real Housewife of Beverly Hills into it. Camille.
What does Camille have to do with this? Plenty. Starting with the fact that Camille was herself, a product in the Human Traffic market. The story of Camille's employment with prince jefri (Googled© here) , (I spit when I type his name and under-capitalize out of disrespect), has been widely reported. Camille may not have complained publicly, but other American women including at least one former Miss USA, have sued the harem/pimp for being held captive as a, "sex-slave".
Maybe that's why Camille doesn't have any unpaid, "help", but she sure has taken a lot of flack for having, "PAID FRIENDS". Even Andy Cohen  on WWHL was pressured into asking Camille about having her friends on the payroll.-THAT, has become another running-topic this season of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.
The HBO show Entourage,  pretty-much validates the reality of the Hollywood habit of paying your friends to work for you. It may be a little embarrassing or awkward for both parties, but its a lot better than NOT-PAYING your friends to work for you.
And finally, as far as Camille is concerned, being a wife in a "Community Property" state, with no pre-nup, and proud of it, she  is looking-forward to being awarded a great deal of the money that was earned by Kelsey. Why? Because the law recognizes the value and worth of a spouse's contribution, even-if that contribution is mostly the "domestic"-kind.
(*and yes I have to mention an aside here. New York Real Housewife Ramona's demented warped statements  have gone unchallenged for three seasons about how her mother stayed in an abusive marriage because she didn't have, "her own money". Ramona's mother had plenty of her own money because she was legally entitled to her marital assets-yet Ramona gives this dangerous incorrect advice every season.When you broadcast material about "Real Housewives", you are responsible to answer to the Housewives Homemakers Union and I'm calling you out on this again Bravo.)
Here's a snip from a Q&A interview that Cedric did with Wet Paint:
"Did you go with them when they moved to Beverly Hills?
No, no. Not at all. They lived in the South of France. I lived in London. So I’d never lived with them before. When they asked me if I wanted to come here, I jumped at the opportunity, because I’d always wanted to come to America. I thought it would be a great opportunity, and I didn’t want to miss it. And plus, I am very fond of them, so I accepted."-Cedric
Did Cedric really, "blackmail" and/or attempt to extort money from the Vanderpumps? Or did he simply ask for what he was entitled-to?  The story is that he threatened them with selling personal information or something like that to the media. The way that I heard it sounded more like he mentioned that he was aware that he could possibly make some of the money that he needs to live, now that he is looking-for another place/job, by doing media interviews.
If he came-across as threatening, than that would be wrong. But is it extortion to ask for what you deserve and need? Of course it isn't! And aside from some catty personal opinions about Lisa's, "ego", I haven't seen ANY, "juicy secrets" about the Vanderpumps attributed to Cedric, and he really doesn't need to take that approach.
Lisa and Todd, really should pay the man at least the going-rate for minimum-wage for domestic live-in help, for the time that he lived with them. And from all of the articles that I've read, he did not live with them for 15 years as mis-reported, he lived with them for less than two years.
I get that Lisa feels bad about what happened, but that she is being very careful to keep her loyalty and prioritys where they should be. I think that Lisa feels guilty, AND SHE SHOULD! Personally, I am aghast that Todd and Lisa are getting nothing but public support for this situation. If Cedric took this to a lawyer, I don't see how he could lose. Maybe Lisa & Todd should ask their attorney what their responsibilities are?
Make sure to tell him/ or her, that:
  • You asked Cedric to come to the US and assisted with his immigration with whatever that entails
  • He was not an independent contractor, since you controlled his time by waking him up etc.
  • He was a live-in employee
  • He left/was asked to leave/was terminated and asked to be compensated
  • This request was treated as a threat
  • The public and media were encouraged to humiliate this man for asking for compensation, and Cedric has been denied his rights by intrinsically implied misrepresentation of his rights.
  • Although it has nothing to do with it, Cedric is considered a minority in the US, (homosexual), which may afford him some additional protections in considering the termination of their arrangement.
So-let me get this straight. This season of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, we learned that you will be mocked and interrogated if you are wealthy and you pay your friends a salary, or money, for their time and help, but if you drag them into a foreign country, and then toss them out when you're finished with them, without adequate resources to live, you will have our support and righteous indignation at how ungrateful this, "freeloader" , (meaning="free help"), has been. Did I get that right? 'Cause that's what it looks like to me. Yes that is my idea of sarcasm. And its a rhetorical question so don't bother answering because I've already seen what a lot of you have to say about this and I think it scary.