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Celebrity Rehab

by Geraldo Rivera | Jan 25, 2007

Let me start by saying I've never been in rehab, although I'm fairly certain counseling and therapy are legitimate tools to help some people control their demons. But I also have no doubt whatsoever that for increasing numbers of celebrities in trouble, rehab is being used as damage control. The latest example is that potty mouth from 'Grey's Anatomy'.

43-year old Isaiah Washington has just announced that he's seeking psychological evaluation at a treatment center, whatever that means, following the scorching controversy over his use of an anti-gay slur to describe gay co-star T.R. Knight.

If sincere, which I doubt, seeking help would be a good thing because the dude is apparently carrying some heavy, psychological baggage. Either he's a homophobe; an extremely jealous actor or maybe the married father of three has secret doubts about his own sexuality.

In any case, after first denying he had ever called his co-star a 'faggot' following an on-set argument, he compounded his troubles by using the slur again at the Golden Globes as he was denying he ever used it.

The guy's clearly a whack job who at least once had a physical altercation with 'Dr. McDreamy' AKA Patrick Dempsey on the set. He's also the reason poor T.R. Knight was involuntarily forced out of the sexuality closet in the first place. And as T.R. told Ellen DeGeneres recently, that's wasn't cool.

So what's a network to do when one of its hottest shows is being torn asunder by the stupidity of a key cast member? It doesn't fire the guy that would risk the delicate chemistry of a precious hit show. It sends the offender to rehab.

And Washington's retreat into rehab has all the sincerity of Mel Gibson, Mark Foley, and Michael Richards. They're self-centered, spoiled, pampered, public people avoiding real responsibility. It's a ploy, a disingenuous cliche that shifts blame for dumb, damaging behavior from the wrong doer to the make-believe mental disease.

Don't buy it. Isaiah Washington is just the latest worm to try to wiggle his way out of a jam of his own creation, and his squirming should make sick all who have really had to struggle to fix themselves. Whatever else he is, the guy's a jerk and if his so-called counselor knows his stuff that will be the diagnosis.

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