It’s unbelievable what a person will do and how far they will go just for money. After watching the first episode of “The Moment of Truth” with my 14 year old son, we talked about how dangerous this show could be, by destroying someone’s marriage, family, friendship or career. The episode that aired on Monday, February 25, 2007 proved that.
The Moment of Truth is a new reality show on FOX, hosted by Mark Walberg. Contestants take a polygraph test off camera, answering fifty questions. They will answer twenty-one of those questions truthfully on National TV to win $500,000. There is a button for the contestant’s guests to press, only once, if they don’t want a question answered. There are six levels to this game, starting at the first level to win $10,000 and ending with the sixth level to win $500,000. If the contestant’s answer is proven wrong by the polygraph machine, all money won is lost.
On Monday, February 25, 2007, FOX aired a special edition episode. This episode was very controversial and wasn’t going to be aired. The host of the show informed the audience, if it was up to him, it wouldn’t be. He also said he never felt so uncomfortable on TV before and it was very hard for him to ask the questions.
The contestant was Lauren Cleri, 26, a hair salon assistant from Piermont, NY. Her guests were her husband, Frank Cleri, 24, a NYC policeman, her mother, father, sister and brother. Her ex-boyfriend, Frank, was the surprise guest. He came to ask her the question, “If I wanted to get back together with you, would you leave your husband?” Her sister pressed the button to avoid hearing the answer. That question was replaced with, “Do you think I’m the man you should be married to?” She answered, “yes”.
Lauren admitted to being fired because she stole from her employer, secrets she knew about her father that her mother didn’t, being in love with her ex and wanting to be married to him, taking off her wedding ring when out with friends, infidelity, avoiding intimacy with her husband and preferring to give a dog food instead of a homeless person. Just to mention a few. “Do you think you are a good person?” This was the question she lied about before winning $200,000 and losing $100,000 by answering “yes”.
During the entire episode, the host warned Lauren how the questions were going to get very personal and deep. He would ask her if she wanted him to stop or if she was concerned who would hear the truth. He also told her certain questions were even too much for him. She tried to claim she wasn’t concerned about the money, she just wanted to get the truth off her chest. She made it to the fourth level winning $100,000. The host then asked if she wanted to walk away with the money. Lauren didn’t care, she felt everyone would appreciate her honesty and she wanted to keep going.
Besides, not knowing what made this woman get on National TV and embarrass her husband like she did, I feel Lauren went too far with her truths. Some truths are better left alone, as they say. What’s even sadder, if she wasn’t concerned about the money, as she claimed, why risk ruining her marriage and maybe even her parent’s marriage.
Isn’t it ironic how she won $100,000 telling the truth about the problems in her marriage, but lost it because she didn’t know the truth about herself? It also amazes me how the audience screams, cheers, boos and applauds to correct answers, regardless of the question or how the answer will ruin the contestant’s relationships.
According to the N.Y. Post, the Cleri’s marriage is in trouble. Frank also knew about his wife’s cheating, but didn’t expect her to broadcast it. Did Lauren come on the show for the fortune and fame? If she did, she went home with neither one.
It’s amazing what people will do for the love of money!