NBC, Tina Fey Issue Statements Against Anti-LGBT Violence
New York, NY, June 10, 2011 – The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), the nation's lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) media advocacy and anti-defamation organization, today renewed a call for Tracy Morgan to speak out following anti-gay remarks during a comedy show. GLAAD also responded to a NBC statement which was issued following a call for the network to speak out and discussions with GLAAD today.
For a recap please visit: http://glaadblog.org/2011/06/10/nbcs-tina-fey-and-bob-greenblatt-respond-to-tracy-morgans-rant/.
Following a public apology from Morgan, GLAAD urged Morgan to assure the remarks would be removed from his routine and to send a clear message to Americans that anti-gay violence is no joke.
GLAAD continues to offer to arrange a meeting between Morgan and family members who have lost children to anti-gay violence. We have also offered to arrange a meeting between Morgan and LGBT young people who have been hurt by parental rejection.
"NBC has taken an important first step by condemning anti-gay violence, but must now push Morgan to tell his fans that such violence is not only not funny, but unacceptable," said GLAAD President Jarrett Barrios. "We urge him to meet with the Americans at the heart of this epidemic to understand why such words have no place in our culture today."
Earlier today, GLAAD called for NBC to condemn this violence during an interview with CNN and via glaad blog.org.
After speaking with GLAAD, NBC Chairman Robert Greenblatt issued the following statement:
"I speak for NBC and myself personally when I say we do not condone hate or violence of any kind and I am pleased to see Tracy Morgan apologizing for recent homophobic remarks in his standup appearance," Greenblatt said. "We will always recognize an artist's freedom to express him or herself, but not when reckless things are said no matter what the context. Unfortunately, Tracy's comments reflect negatively on both 30 Rock and NBC - two very all-inclusive and diverse organizations - and we have made it clear to him that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated."
Tina Fey also weighed in with TMZ.com: "The violent imagery of Tracy's rant was disturbing to me at a time when homophobic hate crimes continue to be a life-threatening issue for the GLBT Community. It also doesn't line up with the Tracy Morgan I know, who is not a hateful man and is generally much too sleepy and self-centered to ever hurt another person. I hope for his sake that Tracy's apology will be accepted as sincere by his gay and lesbian co-workers at '30 Rock', without whom Tracy would not have lines to say, clothes to wear, sets to stand on, scene partners to act with, or a printed-out paycheck from accounting to put in his pocket."
30 Rock received the GLAAD Media Award this year for Outstanding Television - Individual Episode.
More information on Morgan's apology and original remarks are available here: http://glaadblog.org/2011/06/10/glaad-calls-on-nbc-to-condemn-tracy-morgan-tirade/. His apology came after a series of anti-gay jokes during a recent performance in Nashville, Tenn. After GLAAD, HRC, Truth Wins Out, bloggers and others demanded that the comedian to address the allegations.
"I want to apologize to my fans and the gay & lesbian community for my choice of words at my recent stand-up act in Nashville," Morgan said in the written statement. "I'm not a hateful person and don't condone any kind of violence against others. While I am an equal opportunity jokester, and my friends know what is in my heart, even in a comedy club this clearly went too far and was not funny in any context."