In case you missed it — I know I did, because I don’t spend New Year’s Eve planted in front of my television — comedian Natasha Leggero made an appearance on NBC’s New Year’s Eve With Carson Daly, alongside fellow funny people Jane Lynch (who co-hosted) and Anthony Anderson. The discussion eventually turned to a controversial tweet sent out via SpaghettiO’s official Twitter account earlier in December, featuring the SpaghettiO’s mascot holding an American flag and the phrase “Take a moment to remember #PearlHarbor with us”.
Apparently, a bunch of people with nothing better to do found that tweet to be offensive. An ensuing discussion about its supposed “offensiveness” led to the following dig from Leggero: “I mean, it sucks that the only survivors of Pearl Harbor are being mocked by the only food they can still chew.” Naturally, an obnoxious horde of sanctimonious (and humor-less) rabble-rousers took to social media, demanding Leggero pay for her comedy sins — whether it be by drinking bleach, crushing her face with a steel pipe, growing fat and old, or contracting a terminal venereal disease. What they got was the most awesome non-apology of all time.
Well hello America!
It’s been a busy few days but rest assured, I have received all of your messages and have been busy sifting through the different creatively misspelled death threats, rape fantasies and most of all repeated use of the the C word. In the past few days I have been called a cunt so much I felt like I was in a British pub rooting for the wrong soccer team. Click here to see some of my faves!
I wish I could apologize, but do you really want another insincere apology that you know is just an attempt at damage control and not a real admission of guilt? Let me just try instead to be honest.
I’m not sorry. I don’t think the amazing courage of American veterans and specifically those who survived Pearl Harbor is in any way diminished by a comedian making a joke about dentures on television. Do we really believe that the people who fought and defended our freedom against Nazis and the Axis powers will find a joke about Spaghetti O’s too much to bear? Sorry, I have more respect for Veterans than to think their honor can be impugned by a glamorous, charming comedian in a fur hat.
That’s not to say I don’t think comedians are a problem in this country, they are a financial drain on the people who date them and talk far too much about themselves. I’m thrilled to see how passionate (death threats against a five foot tall woman are always the height of passion!) people are about our country and our Veterans. I am too. My own father lost his hearing in the Vietnam War so the issue is pretty close to me too. So rather than apologize, let me offer another perspective.
On the one hand you have me, making a joke about how old people can’t chew tough foods very well.
On the other hand you have Veterans who receive inadequate care upon their return from active duty, rampant sexual assault against female soldiers, staggering rates of suicide, traumatic brain injury, PTSD, substance abuse and depression among soldiers and political gridlock that prevents these problems from getting solved quickly.
Where do you think your outrage and action would be better served, calling me a cunt or doing something about the above problems?
For those of you that are currently doing both: Kudos!
To our vets: I love you. I truly hope you know that.
To Spaghetti O’s: Let’s do lunch.
To the Elderly: Chew!
To @nealrscott: It’s spelled Human Excrement not Increatment.
To those looking for an active way to address the above problems, do what I’ve decided to do instead of apologize: Make a donation to the Disabled American Veterans foundation.
In an era of hyper-sensitivity, feigned outrage, and bogus and insincere apologies, more comedians (and celebrities, in general) should take a page from Leggero’s playbook, as the more feigned outrage you brush off or ignore, the less likely it is to return. Also, it’s a joke about old people and dentures, not veterans. Get over yourselves, America.