It was September 2016 when Danielle Bregoli, better known as the “Cash me ousside. How bout dah?” girl, appeared on Dr. Phil so that her mother could confront her outrageous behavior. Since that appearance, the 13-year-old seventh-grade dropout has received great notoriety from the web, and as TMZ reports today, she’s signed a deal with a major TV production company. Is this all a prime example of the American dream in action, or is it a surefire sign of the approaching apocalypse? Our vote is for the latter.
Bregoli has found herself in headlines numerous times since her initial appearance on Dr. Phil, the daytime show of mental health snake oil salesman Dr. Phil McGraw. (Along with Dr. Mehmet Oz, McGraw is without a doubt a rare instance of Oprah Winfrey casting measurable harm upon the globe.) As of February she was shooting commercials for her own line of merch, for which we aren’t quite sure of the target demographic. She’s also become a “video ho” for the Kodak Black song “Everything 1K,” in which she flops around on a Rolls Royce, flips the bird and pretends to shoot guns (though thank god keeps her clothes on — she is newly a teen, after all).
Last month Bregoli was removed from a Spirit Airlines flight after witnesses (and video) show the teen and her just-as-ill-behaved mother punching a fellow passenger. (Of course, what else would we expect from a teen whose claim to fame is a television episode titled “I Want to Give Up My Car-Stealing, Knife-Wielding, Twerking 13-Year-Old Daughter Who Tried to Frame Me for a Crime”?) After the plane incident, no arrests were made (though she’s been banned for life from the airline), and a video Bregoli posted to the web post-brawl bragged about the passenger, “She got her ass whupped by a 13-year-old.” Charming, no?
McGraw of course realized he’d uncovered a TV ratings goldmine, and Bregoli has since appeared on Dr. Phil again, under the promo tag “Look who’s back for round two.”
While we might hope that social mores and common decency would relegate Bregoli — who herself may very well be a victim of sorts, though one who is surely attempting to monetize any victimhood — instead the teen has been rewarded with a TV series. TMZ has revealed that the series will be a “loosely formatted” reality TV series, and while nothing has been shot yet, producers are “so confident they’re going to shop the concept and believe they can sell a series in the room.”
It’s hard to make the argument that a series lauding — or at the very least normalizing — Bregoli’s indecent behavior is really in the best interest of a minor. Then again, we thought the same about MTV’s Teen Mom franchise, which has made ‘reality TV stars’ out of a pack of irresponsible teens.
Finding the right people to make famous is very clearly not something that only nags the gay community, which feels like it should provide relief but most definitely does not. And let’s not deny this in-no-way-tenuous line of thought: It’s the same America that has become obsessed with famous-for-nothing Kardashians, misbehaving housewives, “bad girls” and the catty mothers of tween pageant girls that elected an orange reality TV show host to the highest position in the free world last November.
When will we all take the advice of L.A.-based graffiti artist Plastic Jesus and “Stop making stupid people famous”?