It takes very little to shock the staff of Showbiz Tonight. But we were floored by the epic example of Hollywood chutzpah that greeted us this morning: Lindsay Lohan, whose very name has become synonymous with "repeat offender," is actually slamming another trouble-prone ex-teen star, Amanda Bynes, for managing to avoiding jail thus far despite a long string of (alleged) vehicular misdeeds (including a DUI charge to which she's pleaded not guilty, two hit and run charges, and a citation this past weekend for driving on a suspended license).
In a tweet that has to be read to be believed (and you should read it while you can; cooler heads in Lindsay's camp are bound prevail and delete it), Lindsay writes: "Why did I get put in jail and a nickelodeon star has had NO punishment(s) so far? These are the moments that I appreciate my life experiences, living without regrets and Disney for supporting me as an actress."
Lindsay then signed off with "night all," presumably retiring after an evening spent exposing the scourge of Hollywood youth media bias that favors ex-Nickelodeon stars like Amanda over ex-Disney stars like Lindsay.
Over the years, Showbiz Tonight has spent so much time calling Los Angeles authorities about Lindsay's car-related mishaps, court dates and jailings, we once suggested the LAPD open a special Lindsay-only department (Law & Order: Special Lindsay Unit). So the notion that Lindsay -- who, unlike Amanda, actually has a DUI conviction, not to mention a string of cocaine possession and probation violations -- has the audacity to call out another starlet with a lesser record just seems like an example of the pot calling the kettle a bad driver.
But to be fair, Lindsay might have a point. Tales of Amanda's driving misadventures have been a continuing storyline all summer - one that gets less funny with each report of her getting behind the wheel after leaving a club. And Lindsay is right to point out that Bynes has faced minimal legal repercussions. Amanda's antics really should give pause to anyone (Lindsay included) who has to share the streets of L.A. with this obviously troubled young woman.
Nevertheless, Lindsay is the last person who should be complaining. In much the same way Kim Kardashian followed the "sex tape-to-reality show stardom" template created by Paris Hilton, Amanda -- in carelessly racking up one serious traffic violation after another -- is following an example Lindsay's set years ago. After all, it was Lindsay and her own well-reported scrapes with the law who exposed for all of young Hollywood the dirty secret of L.A.'s criminal justice system: due to overcrowded jails, L.A. is often forced to not lock up non-violent offenders.
Is there anyone out there who doesn't think Amanda was watching along with the rest of us as Lindsay skated in and out of court, and in and out of hour-long "jail sentences," despite her repeated offenses? Lindsay's antics sent the message to Amanda and countless other stars that as long as you don't kill anyone, you hire a good attorney, and avoid doing anything extra stupid like violating probation or showing up to court with "F--- You" on your fingernails, you can screw up as often as you want without worrying about serious jail time.
The sad thing is that's the part of Lindsay's legacy that appears to influence Amanda and her ilk much more than Lindsay's once-inspiring rise to fame. So Lindsay shouldn't be too hard on Amanda; she's only traveling down the same road Lindsay got pulled over on a long time ago.