The Aerosmith lead singer pushes the Senate to approve 'Steven Tyler Act' that makes it possible for celebrities to sue paparazzi who take pictures while they're on private property.
Steven Tyler appeared at a legislative session to convince a Hawaii Senate committee to approve an anti-paparazzi law that bears his name. The former "American Idol" judge who just bought a home on Maui testified Friday, February 8 along with another rock legend Mick Fleetwood.
"First and foremost I'd like to say, being a personality, no matter where we go, we get shot [by photographers]. It's part of the deal-io, and it's OK," the Aerosmith frontman said before adding with a joke, "It kind of drives us crazy, but, like my mom said, 'You asked for it, Steven.' "
"But when I'm in my own home," he continued, "and I'm taking a shower or changing clothes or eating or spending Christmas with my children, and I see paparazzi a mile away, shooting at me with lenses this long, and then seeing that very picture in People magazine, you know, it hurts...That's what they do, they are just constantly taking from us."
"The paradise of Hawaii is a magnet for celebrities who just want a peaceful vacation. As a person in the public eye, I know the paparazzi are there and we have to accept that," he said in a statement. "But when they intrude into our private space, disregard our safety and the safety of others that crosses a serious line that shouldn't be ignored."
Fleetwood couldn't agree more with Tyler as saying, "The islands shouldn't represent this to people coming here."
Other supporters from the celebrity circles are Britney Spears, the Osbournes and Avril Lavigne. "Not only would this help the local economy, but it would also help ensure the safety of the general public, which can be threatened by crowds of cameramen or dangerous high-speed car chases," they said in a statement.
The so-called "Steven Tyler Act", or SB465, creates a civil cause for action for the "constructive invasion of privacy," allowing celebrities to sue a shutterbug or other like-minded offender who takes "offensive" pictures or videos of them while they are on private property.
The stars could press charges "if the person captures or intends to capture, in a manner that is offensive to a reasonable person, through any means a visual image, sound recording, or other physical impression of another person while that person is engaging in a personal or familial activity with a reasonable expectation of privacy," the bill states.
The bill must still be passed by the full legislature before becoming law. If it's passed, it's due to take effect on July 1.