MSNBC Takes Alec Baldwin Off Air for Two Weeks
After a taped tirade against a photographer that has offended the LGBT community, Alec Baldwin has been temporarily suspended from his evening MSNBC show Up Late With Alec Baldwin.
After the recent court decision in his stalking case was delivered, Baldwin was in the streets of New York when the paparazzi again circled around him, sending the explosive actor into yet another tirade.
Heard on the video of the tirade is a perturbed Baldwin calling a photog a "c**ksucking f*g."
Before the day was over, Baldwin was sending tweets denying that he hurled a gay slur and claiming instead that he said "fathead," not "f*g."
Baldwin followed that up by telling fans that since he has a "gay hairdresser," he couldn't be a homophobe.
Some were not satisfied with these denials. Gay blogger Andrew Sullivan slammed both Baldwin and MSNBC for the incident.
"What a bunch of hypocrites and phonies on that propaganda network," Sullivan wrote on Nov. 14. "If you’re a conservative and are caught yelling these slurs at random people, you’d be fired pronto or buried in an avalanche of gay protest. If you’re a self-entitled liberal, you’re fine."
The media watchdog organization Truth Revolt began a petition for MSNBC to fire the actor-turned-talk show host, accruing over 1,300 signatures at the time of this writing.
Now MSNBC is responding to Baldwin's slurs by suspending his evening show for two weeks.
The left-wing cable network will replace the show with other programs and not air reruns during the suspension period.
Baldwin issued his own formal apology which is posted on the MSNBC website.
"I would like to address the comments I made this past week," Baldwin writes.
I did not intend to hurt or offend anyone with my choice of words, but clearly I have – and for that I am deeply sorry. Words are important. I understand that, and will choose mine with great care going forward. What I said and did this week, as I was trying to protect my family, was offensive and unacceptable. Behavior like this undermines hard-fought rights that I vigorously support. I understand “Up Late” will be taken off the schedule for tonight and next week.
I want to apologize to my loyal fans and to my colleagues at msnbc – both for my actions and for distracting from their good work. Again, please accept my apology.
Alec Baldwin isn't the first MSNBC personality to receive a suspension for boorish behavior. In 2011, host Ed Schultz was suspended for calling conservative talk show host Laura Ingraham a "slut."