Barack Obama | Bill Gates | Television | Towleroad Guide to the Tube

Towleroad Guide to the Tube #80

BARACK OBAMA: Floor statement on need for ending Iraq war; outlines troop cap and phased withdrawal. (source: americablog)

BILL GATES: Talks "Vista" and more on The Daily Show. (source: slog)


REGIS AND KELLY: Prison Break star Robert Knepper (T-Bag) discusses the origin of his character's name. (source: defamer)

THE "F" WORD (below): HRC's Joe Solmonese and blogger Keith Boykin on CNN.
(source: pageoneq)

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  1. These three with Zahn are jackasses, especially Keith "I've never been called faggot" Boykin.

    At least the guy from HRC made the real point: when you're at school or at work, where you have to co-exist with people you don't want to be around - but have to, there needs to be zero-tolerance for potentially hate filled expressions. There's just no discussion for me on this point. Washington must be fired for what he REPEATEDLY brought into the workplace.

    Once again, however, I have to wonder where the totally useless GLAAD reps are...

    Posted by: BeeDee | Jan 31, 2007 11:56:13 AM

  2. Those segments where people on the street are questioned to get humor from how stupid they are, like this one or Jay Leno's "Jaywalking," always annoy me because you know the editor of the video has stacked it to look like all Americans are stupid when, in fact, he or she stacked it to look that way by throwing out 98% of the correct answers.

    Posted by: phil | Jan 31, 2007 12:16:48 PM

  3. Thank You - Now I understand the British headline "How can 53 million American can be so dumb". This is why I must continue to say I'm Swiss.

    Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.
    Martin Luther King Jr., Strength to Love, 1963

    Posted by: vincent | Jan 31, 2007 12:23:39 PM

  4. I have two relatives in America who joined the Army just prior to Operation Desert Storm. They have both built quite successfull careers, but they still think that the Operation was about the US intervening in the war between Iran and Iraq. On the other hand, some of the most erudite people I know are Americans. But they would never join the Army.

    Posted by: borut | Jan 31, 2007 12:37:41 PM

  5. I cant believe that guy compared Washington saying faggot to Rosie saying that gay guys like to toss the salad (literally toss the lettuce with the dressing..not the dirty thing) and like to have a crisp line on their jeans (those stereotypes that gays are good at cooking and dress well are so damn offensive)...

    Posted by: Chris | Jan 31, 2007 12:50:06 PM

  6. to chris:

    but the guy had a point when he said that rosie was not sent to rehab when she made racist comments towards asians

    Posted by: johnosahon | Jan 31, 2007 1:10:49 PM

  7. She did not make racist comments towards asians..She did an impression of an asian dialect that wasnt very good..She does impressions of Irish people and British people all the time and they all suck..she's a stand up comic.Thats a far cry from calling a coworker a faggot an then denying it in multiple interviews while repeating the word.

    Posted by: Chris | Jan 31, 2007 1:15:55 PM

  8. re: Zahn clip.

    that was useless in advancing the discussion. in terms of how Washington should be dealt with, how is it that we've forgotten that this whole thing started becuase he could not keep his hands to himself? It is irrelevant (iin my opinion) that he and Patrick Dempsey may have come to some understanding over the incident, but as an employer to continue to employ someone who has created a hostile work environment, violated company conduct policy (i presume anyway) and THEN goes on tv at an awards show and chooses to lie about it. Under what crazy set of circumstances does that person cointinue to be employed???

    Posted by: hoya86 | Jan 31, 2007 1:19:15 PM

  9. "Under what crazy set of circumstances does that person cointinue to be employed??"

    Um... a number one network television show? It's also a little delusional to assume that in corporate america, employees of considerable importance to their companies, are readily dismissed for name calling.

    Kieth is usually on point but I would say that maybe this wasn't his best segment.

    Posted by: Giovanni | Jan 31, 2007 1:38:29 PM

  10. Phil,

    Unfortunately, most Americans are as stupid as the ones depicted in that clip. The fact that the State Department estimates that only 27% of Americans have a current passport means that many of us have never ventured outside the borders of our own country. We're pretty ignorant about the rest of the world.

    The part in that clip where he asks people to look at the world map in which countries have been blatantly mislabelled reminds me of a history course I took when I was in college at a fairly well respected four year university. The professor presented us with a map of modern day Europe with the names of major countries, capitals, and bodies of water removed. It was our job to correctly identify 30 countries, capital cities and bodies of water. Some of the cities we had to identify were Rome, Paris, Brussels and Madrid and the countries included France, Spain, and Italy. In other words, he wasn't asking us to identify many things that were particularly obscure. Out of a class of about 40 people, I scored the highest, correctly placing 27 out of 30 European countries, capital cities and bodies of water. The person who came closest to me correctly identified a whopping 9 out of 30 European countries, capital cities and bodies of water. And these were college students!

    By the way, I attributed my relative success on that quiz to the fact that I'd spent a few months backpacking around Europe just prior to returning to the U.S. to resume my college career. Most Americans don't take the opportunity to travel the rest of the world. In fact, in my travels I met loads of South Africans and Australians but only 2 Americans!

    Posted by: peterparker | Jan 31, 2007 1:45:21 PM

  11. Does anyone else find the use of the term "gays" offensive? As in "The gays don't like when people use the F word"? I was really bothered everytime the host used it on that last clip.

    At least something good may come of this whole mess--more people might actually realize that the F word is VERY offensive. But then again, maybe they won't care...

    Posted by: Chip | Jan 31, 2007 1:47:04 PM

  12. I thought the Zahn clip was great. Her guests seemed to represent the majority of viewpoints Americans have on this issue. Also, Keith identified the factor of race and how it may affect the perception of this issue, and the last guest identified the issues of political correctness and double standards, which seems to be underlying the comments generated on this board about this topic.

    I agree with Boykin in that, perhaps if this situation hadn't become so public, I would prefer to give Washington a chance to make up for his mistake in repeatedly using the F-word (if only that had been his only mistake...unfortunately, he physically threatened a co-worker, so I think he should be gone for that alone) since he has shown himself to be an ally in the past.

    However, since this incident has garnered so much attention, this has become an opportunity for the gay community to demonstrate that hate speech towards our community should be treated with the same amount of disdain as hate speech for any other group. And Isaiah is now in the unenviable spot of being an example for the rest of the country of how users of such speech will be treated.

    Is this an example of political correctness? Absolutely. Is that a bad thing? Absolutely not. PC may have shortcomings, but by forcing adults to model hate-free language (whether the adults are actually congruent with that language or not), perhaps children will learn the same hate-free language and internalize true respect for others.

    Posted by: Pierre | Jan 31, 2007 2:03:03 PM

  13. "It's so complicated!!!" screams Zahn's guests.

    No it's not. When a person who is not gay calls someone who is gay a faggot, I think the intention is quite clear.

    Washington created a hostile working atmosphere. It's not a race issue, it's a anti-gay harrassment issue.

    Posted by: FASTLAD | Jan 31, 2007 2:15:31 PM

  14. And to the "Americans questioned" would be funny if it were not so true! Yes Andy, embarrassing to say the least!

    Posted by: RB | Jan 31, 2007 2:28:57 PM

  15. Ugly Americans, I hang my head in shame. What the really sorry part is these people who support the resident in the white house probably would miss any questions about the bible, even though they use that damn thing to deny us the same rights they have! Sad, sad people.

    Posted by: gay is the new straight | Jan 31, 2007 2:57:07 PM

  16. Ask one hundred Europeans about the capital of the United States, I think about a half of them would say: New York
    As a European you drive some hours in your car and you're in another country with another language and, not so long ago, another currency. Not so easy to do for most Americans. So, don't be too embarrassed, it's more or less the same wherever you go,
    (though I loved that guy telling us that the Berlin Wall was in Israel!!! Absolutely cool! Just think about it!)

    Posted by: delb | Jan 31, 2007 3:22:38 PM

  17. Hoya86, that person would still be employed in the world of athletics, highly rated shows, and if the person brings a lot of money into a company.

    Posted by: Cadence | Jan 31, 2007 3:41:50 PM

  18. i'm astonished that kelly rippa seemed to know the meaning of "teabagging" ...very scary indeed !!

    Posted by: A.J. | Jan 31, 2007 4:07:36 PM

  19. Puala Zahn is a complete IDIOT! CNN, please find a clue quickly! If someone called her an AGEING SLUT I wonder how she would feel? Hate speach is just that, hate speach, and should not be tolerated at all! Zahn is entirely too ignorant to host anything not written on cue cards!

    Posted by: Steven Pope | Jan 31, 2007 4:42:19 PM

  20. Chip, I agree; there is something about her use of the expression "The Gays" that made me flinch a tad; something faintly "Them" about it. After all, people don't go round saying "the Straights". There’s nothing quite like being utterly defined by your religion, race or, most dangerous of all, your sexuality! Eek! She may as well say “The Homogenous Sexual Aliens”…! I say, bring back “The Commies”!

    For me, this "discussion" programme illustrates exactly what is wrong with political/public discourse in the US (and elsewhere); namely, the reductive, sound-bite, "can-we-have-your-Judgment-in-30-seconds" style of adversarial, juridical tv where one or more telegenic "experts" with diametrically opposed views are incited to take up entrenched positions and rally to entrench themselves even further. No-one comes to the table to learn a damn thing, only to match wits or point-score in the rush to hand down sentences. A woefully inadequate 2 or 3 minutes to discuss this important issue cannot do it anywhere near justice. Ultimately, I question the value of this type of tit-for-tat, shot-making tv the point of which, it seems to me, is always to generate more heat than light for the benefit of the network’s viewing figures.

    Posted by: Atheist | Jan 31, 2007 4:55:27 PM

  21. I cant really say anything about Paula Zahn because my friends (gay, straight or in between) and I say "the gays" all the time...I think its fun to say things like "the gays enjoy musical theatre" or "the gays enjoy a nice slim pleated pant".. Any word can be offensive though I guess..I hate it when religious people say "homosexual"..The way they say it makes it sound so vile, id rather they just said faggot.

    Posted by: Chris | Jan 31, 2007 5:13:55 PM

  22. Isiah Washington shouldn't have been fired for just saying the f-word, he should be fired because he not only said the f-word - but also turned it into a physical assault in the process.

    That's something I haven't heard a single person trying to defend Washington *ever* mention, be it in these forums or the media, etc. At what point does one's behavior become a fireable offense?

    As to Zahn's segment... I felt it was pretty useless. I don't think any of the three on the second half of the segment offered anything constructive to the dialogue. The guy on the left was clearly a creepazoid, too. I can't stand the media. In that whole segment, they NEVER mentioned the fact that Isiah made the confrontation physical - which adds a whole other dimension to the scandal.

    Posted by: Ryan | Jan 31, 2007 5:28:34 PM

  23. Well, people arent mentioning the physical part, because that was against Patrick Dempsey and the 2 of them have privately squashed it...You have to remember that this happened 3 months ago...The physical part was already resolved..The faggot part was resolved as well until it was brought up again at the golden globes.

    Posted by: Chris | Jan 31, 2007 6:24:10 PM

  24. The discussion wasn't about Isaiah Washington. It was about banning certain offensive words, namely f*ggot and n***er. The discussion was a continuation of a series of programs that Zahn has held dealing with race relations.

    Posted by: Cadence | Jan 31, 2007 7:42:31 PM

  25. Wow! That CNN clip was total fukn bullshit! She didn't know the f-word was offensive?

    And so what if we say "the gays"? It's only a problem when someone like Zahn says it and almost spits in disgust as it leaves her lips. How about letting me use the c-word (unt) directed at her?

    Posted by: shane | Jan 31, 2007 7:50:40 PM

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