A Celebrity Dad Smackdown!
You may recall that during his acceptance speech at the Golden Globes, George Clooney made a crack about disgraced Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff:
“Who would name their kid Jack with the last word ‘-off ‘ at the end of your last name?” he asked. “No wonder that guy is screwed up.”
Unfortunately, members of Abramoff’s family, along with 19 million viewers worldwide, were watching the broadcast – including Jack’s 78 year old father, Frank. he had this to say about it:
“Oh, how far Hollywood has fallen,” said his letter to the Desert Sun. “Your glib and ridiculous attack on my son, Jack, coupled with your obscene query as to the choice his mother and I made in naming him brought shame and dishonour on you and your profession.” … Mr Abramoff added that on hearing Clooney’s remarks, his 12-year-old granddaughter – one of his son’s five children – burst into tears. “Are you proud of that?” he asked. “One wonders how your father would respond, were the roles reversed.” … He went on to explain that Jack was his own father’s name, telling Mr Clooney: “You decided to take a gratuitous slap at my son, my family and even my dear departed father. Is this the tradition of Gable, Bogart, Pacino and Burton? Are you the heir to the dignity and greatness of Hollywood’s past, or more likely a portent to a depressing and horrific future?”
Nick Clooney, George Clooney’s dad ressponded as follows (George had no comment):
“I understand what it is like to have one’s son criticised in a very public way,” Mr Clooney Snr, who lives in Kentucky, told a Desert Sun reporter … “It’s very painful and it’s very difficult. The difference here, and it must be said, is Mr Abramoff’s son, instead of pursing some positive efforts to do what he hoped would change the climate of American politics, has confessed and has been convicted by that confession of subverting the political process.”
So ok, it’s never cool to make a 12 year old girl cry, and George Clooney’s joke really sucked. But you know what sucks harder? Being a total douchebag slimeball and an embarassment to all your people and all people that wear Borsallinos. I feel for Abramoff’s father, but clearly he shoulda growed his son a little gooder.
Abramoff has pleaded guilty to charges in a Congressional influence peddling scandal and could face 30 years in prison and $25 million in restitution. He has agreed to cooperate with prosecutors and will provide evidence about (mostly Republican) members of Congress.