Brokeback Mountain | Heath Ledger | John Gibson | News

Outrage Rises Over John Gibson Remarks on Heath Ledger

John Gibson's disgusting remarks about Heath Ledger, which I posted about last night, have reverberated through the media. I've made a clip of a segment on MSNBC's Morning Joe in which Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski and Willie Geist discuss the remarks.

Scarborough asks, "Is he laughing that Heath Ledger died because he made a movie about two gay men? Is that why this young father dying was a punchline to John Gibson?"

When Geist replies, "Of course it is. That’s the implication," Scarborough replies, "So if you make a movie — this is now, it’s not that if you are gay, your death is a punchline. If you make a movie about being gay, your death becomes a punchline. I don’t know who syndicates this guy, but that is absolutely stunning, that John Gibson would be that mean-spirited and hateful."

Last night, Gibson defended his "little Brokeback Mountain joke," saying he's lived off that "I wish I knew how to quit you" comment for months, saying "I’m not giving that up."

Listen to Gibson's new comments on Think Progress.

GLAAD has sent out an alert, urging people to contact the network and voice their disgust with Gibson.

MSNBC anchor Keith Olbermann last night gave Gibson his "world's worst person" award (below).

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  1. Good they should FIRE this cruel, insensitve JERK. I called 3 times to complain, and, sent emails as well that joking about the death of Mr Ledger, or anyone else is uncalled for.

    Every reader on this site should do it as well, put these nasty, vile, homophobes in thier place, and Fox Noise on notice, the gay bashing has to stop.

    Posted by: Sebastian | Jan 24, 2008 4:02:17 PM

  2. He doesn't have to give up his precious "I can't quit you" line. He just needs to sit and home and say it to himself. He and his piehole should lose access to television. And that particular network should suffer where it hurts - lack of viewers and ad money.

    Posted by: Emmy | Jan 24, 2008 4:10:41 PM

  3. I'm glad people are talking about this. It was so outrageous. You know, I think its always sort of expected when a gay person is mocked by bigots when they die. But I really think many naive straight people out there might not realize the extent of anti-gay bigotry until moments like this. When simply playing the role of a gay man gets you constant ridicule even in death. Actors play sociopaths, serial killers, drug dealers, etc. But play gay and watch these self-righteous bigots piss on your legacy even on the very day you pass away.

    Posted by: Wes | Jan 24, 2008 4:11:00 PM

  4. Being a Republican means never having to say you're sorry.

    About this. About a war. About anything.

    Posted by: Marco | Jan 24, 2008 4:14:21 PM

  5. Thing is, I think what he said was just as horrible as what Don Imus said. I would hope the rest of the media would jump on this story as they did that one, ending with his ass being fired.

    Posted by: secretagentman | Jan 24, 2008 4:16:53 PM

  6. It's far worse than what Imus said, and on par with the revolting racist remarks he's made on-air in the past. Gibson is a true piece of shit and it's nothing short of mind-boggling that he was ever allowed to appear before a television camera.

    Posted by: DCN | Jan 24, 2008 4:20:21 PM

  7. Hit these bastards in the only place that makes a difference: boycott their advertisers.

    Murdoch's tabloid rag The Sun ran a story about the Hillsborough football stadium disaster in 1989 (where 96 people died), saying that Liverpool fans had picked the pockets of the dead. That disaster had been a shock to the entire city and sales of the paper went down to zero. Many newsagents today still refuse to stock it even after the scumbag editor (the same one who was successfully sued by Elton John) was forced to apologise by Murdoch.

    Boycott the bastards; it's the only way.

    Posted by: John C | Jan 24, 2008 4:30:37 PM

  8. I am sort of obsessed with Mika.

    You can sense her obvious displeasure over the incident (clearly) and I harken back to when she went ape shit about the Paris Hilton story. I wish there were more journalists like her.

    Posted by: David | Jan 24, 2008 4:30:38 PM

  9. Am I the only one who finds this:

    Scarborough replies, "So if you make a movie — this is now, IT'S NOT THAT IF YOU ARE GAY, your death is a punchline. If you make a movie about being gay, your death becomes a punchline." [EMPHASIS mine]

    every bit as offensive as Gibson's comment?

    Scarborough acts as if it might be acceptable if Heath actually were gay but it's absolutely out of line to make such a comment about a straight person who JUST PLAYED GAY in a movie.

    Scarborough is an ass who doesn't have a whole lot of room to pontificate on Gibson's homophobia. Even in his outrage the lace of his homophobic "slip" shows.

    Posted by: ZEKE | Jan 24, 2008 4:34:36 PM

  10. It's taken longer than I would like, but I'm glad MSNBC has finally figured out how to take a moral high ground and offer an ethical counterpoint to Fox News.

    Yes, I'm biased, but I'm glad to see these pathetic bigots finally called out.

    Posted by: DC Guy | Jan 24, 2008 4:43:04 PM

  11. well my darlngs, I've just sent off e-mails to everyone on the glaad list. thanks andy for bringing this to our attention.

    Posted by: the queen | Jan 24, 2008 4:46:54 PM

  12. This hateful demagogue, this carrion feeder, protects American freedom on decency by spitting on a young mans corpse?

    Because he once played a gay man in a movie? That's all Gibson needs to know? Will Gibson picket Ledger's funeral alongside Fred Phelps?

    I've emailed and called Fox News. I could shout myself hoarse at the bloated, pasty, entitled fuckwits they seem produce on a conveyor belt there.

    But seriously, this is a tipping point.

    Posted by: FASTLAD | Jan 24, 2008 4:53:04 PM

  13. In addition to emailing Fox News, contact the FCC and file an indecency complaint:

    The only thing that makes this difficult is that complaints are only considered valid if you live in the listening area where the indecencies were broadcast. Checking the Fox Radio site, it seems that Mr. Gibson's syndication is not all that far-reaching.

    Posted by: DC Guy | Jan 24, 2008 5:09:05 PM

  14. Think about it. Liberal take: Its ok to hate a gay man, spit on his corpse. But a man, a father, with a possible addiction problem. You hate him just because he played a gay man in movie. Unconscionable. Fuck you you brain dead libtards as well as you right wing Nazi evangelinut fucks.

    Posted by: Vi Agara | Jan 24, 2008 5:13:15 PM

  15. I also sent emails to everyone on the Fox List. I contacted other websites and blogs to see if they would post the statement from glaad.

    The more we can get this out in the mainstream media, the better. I'm hoping this will be picked up. I sent emails off to the entertainment shows as well. Et, Access, so on and so forth.

    Gibson also has a show on Fox News Channel. It is on from 5-6PM. I have it on now to see if he makes any comments.

    Posted by: Huss | Jan 24, 2008 5:19:39 PM

  16. Nobody said it was okay to hate a gay man or "spit on his corpse". They were pointing out the fact that he wasn't gay simply because its just that much more outrageous. The guy isn't even gay, he just PLAYED gay, and is still a victim of homophobia. Think about it.

    Posted by: Wes | Jan 24, 2008 5:21:15 PM

  17. We all agree that this is horrible, but we are preaching to the choir unless we tell it to Fox News, their advertisers and John Gibson himself! You have to send them an email and tell them directly. We all agree here, so posting your comments here alone will not help. Go out and tell someone that you are outraged! Blow their email boxes up with complaints and do not let up until they react. We can roll over and take or we can take action! To those that have already done so, THANK YOU! I sent my email to Fox and Gibson this morning:

    As an avid Fox News viewer and gay man, I was deeply offended by John Gibson's radio show comments concerning the death of Heath Ledger! I found his "attempt" at humor to be not only not humorous, but in very poor taste as well. How can you allow this man to continue without a public apology at the very least. I am certain that it would not be heart felt and be forced, but it would be the responsible thing to do. By allowing John Gibson the opportunity to say such things without consequence you lend credence and credibility to organizations such as the westboro baptist church and their leader, Fred Phelps in their mission to spread hate to the American people. Shame on John Gibson for sinking to such a low level!

    Posted by: RB | Jan 24, 2008 5:31:50 PM

  18. Ok, step back people. You act as if someone had besmirched the memory of George Washingon or someone else important. This was the star of "10 Things I Hate About You" and a grossly overrated Brokeback movie. Take him off his high horse for a second.

    If you actually listen to the full context of the comments, not really all that bad. Are all those countless Brokeback jokes now taboo because dear St. Heath couldnt figure out how many abien to take? Give me a break. There were tasteless obscene Anna Nicole jokes everybody joked about just days after she died. But i guess she should have played a mumbling lesibain cowgirl in a boring movie to get your outrage.

    The point is, focus your 'outrage' on topics that are a little more worthy of your time..rather than get worked up about some cable show pundit making bad jokes.

    Posted by: Nikk | Jan 24, 2008 5:52:06 PM

  19. Gibson just said on his TV show he was sorry if he "offended anyone" get rid of him.

    Posted by: Huss | Jan 24, 2008 6:01:13 PM

  20. Thinking about the story, I wonder, is it time for us to really stand up hard against these kinds of things and try to make it as unacceptable to mock gays and those who support gays as it disparage other minority groups? Or would that be a mistake? Some people seem to believe that's it's better to handle things in a more patient, non-confrontational manner. I just wonder what the best way to push back against stuff like this is.

    Posted by: Josh | Jan 24, 2008 6:16:20 PM

  21. But it OK Wes. You need to remember that. It is ok to hate men who love other men. That is a given. In this segment, it is inherent. The scientific proven fact is though is that the majority of men and women are attracted sexually to their own gender. Society needs to puke up this poison from the churches, cough up the green phlegm of this mental disease from the media and get mankind well and loving each other again, as nature intended.

    Posted by: Vi Agara | Jan 24, 2008 6:19:24 PM

  22. Nikk, your concern-trolling is showing.

    And Gibson's statement that he's sorry if he offended anyone is the classic non-apology apology: he sorry the listener/reader/viewer has hurt feelings, he's not sorry that he said it.

    Write to Fox News and write to all sponsors and advertisers letting them know you won't use their products since their money promotes Gibson's message.

    Posted by: davitydave | Jan 24, 2008 6:25:25 PM

  23. Nikk -
    I didn't think it was funny when people mocked Anna Nicole's death, and I don't think it is funny to mock this guys death.

    And you know - when Ann Coulter, Fred Phelps or any other disgusting person dies, I won't mock their death either.

    It is wrong.

    It isn't because he played a gay role that I think it is wrong, it is simply because it is wrong.

    The point I made on the other post, and the same one that I'll make now -- I don't think this would be getting the media attention it is getting had Heath been gay. I appreciate MSNBC for calling them out on this, and I am a huge fan of the station, but I'm not buying their intentions here.

    I'd venture to guess they wouldn't say he was a father struggling with a substance abuse problem had he been gay. I'm sure they would say he was a drug addict.

    Posted by: gabriel | Jan 24, 2008 6:45:22 PM

  24. Josh, in answer to your thoughtful question, I'm from Ireland and here's what I've learned from all my years growing up there: you get as much freedom as you take. You don't wait for your rights to be given to you: you insist.

    Nikk, Leger starred in an internationally groundbreaking film that addressed the issue of homophobia head on. In Gibson's show he was mocked and pilloried for that very reason before he had even been buried.

    Gay people honor Ledgers achievement and are rightly appalled by the vicious bigoted catcalls of John Gibson and the empathy deficient ghouls who share his hateful views.

    If you can't understand that then you haven't given the issue more than a cursory glance. But then, that's obvious from your post.

    Posted by: FASTLAD | Jan 24, 2008 6:51:36 PM

  25. It takes just a minute to cut and paste an email to those slime at Fox, plus email
    (919) 636-3131

    Let's see how much they want the gay vote.

    Posted by: patrick nyc | Jan 24, 2008 6:54:51 PM

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