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Carl

NBC Apologizes to Michelle Bachmann over Song

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The song title is kind of alarming, but what they performed wasn't nearly as nasty as it sounds, although Ska-Punk is an interesting choice.

My question: How do you "severely reprimand" The Roots?

GOP Presidential candidate Michele Bachmann received an apology from an NBC executive after an off-color song was played during her appearance on Jimmy Fallon's "Late Night," her spokeswoman said late Wednesday.

The Minnesota congresswoman received a personal letter from NBC's vice president for late night programming, Doug Vaughan, a day after she appeared on the show. As Bachmann walked onstage, the show's band had played a snippet of a 1985 Fishbone song entitled "Lyin' Ass Bitch."

Vaughan wrote that the incident was "not only unfortunate but also unacceptable," Bachmann spokeswoman Alice Stewart told The Associated Press. She said Vaughn offered his sincerest apologies and said the band had been "severely reprimanded."

Fallon also apologized to Bachmann when they spoke earlier Wednesday, she said. He'd tweeted earlier, saying he was "so sorry about the intro mess."

"He was extremely nice and friendly and offered his apology, and she accepted it," Stewart said, adding that the comedian said he was unaware the band planned to play the song. "It's just unfortunate that someone had to do something so disrespectful."

Bachmann lashed out earlier Wednesday at NBC for not apologizing or taking immediate disciplinary action. In her first comments on the flap, Bachmann said on the Fox News Channel that the Fallon show band displayed sexism and bias by playing the song.

"This is clearly a form of bias on the part of the Hollywood entertainment elite," Bachmann said. She added, "This wouldn't be tolerated if this was Michelle Obama. It shouldn't be tolerated if it's a conservative woman either."

She went further on a national radio conservative radio show hosted by Michael Medved, calling the incident "inappropriate, outrageous and disrespectful."

On Fox, Bachmann expressed surprise that she's heard nothing from the TV network. She suggested that discipline for the show's band, The Roots, was in order. She said she believed Fallon's comments to be sincere.

One of Bachmann's congressional colleagues, New York Democrat Nita Lowey, had called on NBC to apologize for its "insulting and inappropriate" treatment of its guest.

An NBC spokeswoman didn't return a phone message from The Associated Press.

The Roots' bandleader, Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, has said the song was a "tongue-in-cheek and spur-of-the-moment decision."

Bachmann, who is lagging in presidential polls, has spent the week promoting her new autobiography in national television interviews.

http://www.tvnewscheck.com/article/2011/11/28/55635/nbc-apologizes-to-mi

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TheLizard stole my comment. Michele Bachmann is a public figure, and she's running for President. If she doesn't want people making unkind comments about her, maybe she ought to either drop out of politics or take a few minutes to think about why the song "Lyin' Ass Bitch" was used to introduce her.

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First off, I never heard of that song and wouldn't have recognized the insult had I heard it. Second, any talk show, especially weak ones, are dependent on a good flow of guests. It is stupid business to alienate any segment with this kind of insult. There are better and wittier ways to make your political stance known in the context of a talk show. Bad judgment...bad business.

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I was watching the show, and caught it immediatley when she was introduced & they played that song. I was floored. You could tell that both Fallon & Bachmann were just covering and moving on, and as much as I can't stand her, I thought she did a nice job of ignoring the bait.

It was a bad decision by the band, bad for the show, and I gotta agree, funny as hell.

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First off, I never heard of that song and wouldn't have recognized the insult had I heard it. Second, any talk show, especially weak ones, are dependent on a good flow of guests. It is stupid business to alienate any segment with this kind of insult. There are better and wittier ways to make your political stance known in the context of a talk show. Bad judgment...bad business.

It wasn't the decision of the producers or Jimmy Fallon or anybody involved with the show other than The Roots themselves. The Roots are a very liberal band and I really doubt they care if they alienate a guest that they don't like.

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But the producers had the opportunity to reprimand the band in such a way that they are assured bad judgment won't be exercised again. Maybe they repimanded in such a way, maybe they didn't. Maybe The Roots should have the brains not to make their employer look bad. It's a business.

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But how do you reprimand The Roots? Kick them off the show? Yea right, they're a big reason people watch the show. They're central to many comedy bits. They're not Kevin Eubanks or something that can just be replaced.

So how else do you reprimand them? Pay them less? As if they care. They're millionaires.

I don't see how you punish them without hurting the show itself in the process.

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The Roots, like NBC, are a business. Millionaire's are generally in the business of becoming bigger millionaires. There are contracts, and where there are contracts, there are provisions, and clauses, etc. Basically they embarrassed their employer, using their employer's platform to make their personal statement. I'm sure doing so broke some sort of anti-something or other clause, which will incur some penalty or loss of earnings. Just like slapping a pro athlete with a big fine. It may not be huge compared to their total earnings, but it will affect the bottom line in some way. At least I imagine it would work that way.

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That's just bad manners and poor upbringing. Disrespectful to someone older, and inconsiderate to your employer. It's also passive aggressive which warrants capital punishment on its own.

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You guys have listened to the kind of crap that spews out of that woman's mouth, right? We talking about a person that thinks that the suicides of gay teens are a "natural result of a disordered lifestyle". Sure, The Roots are a business, but they're also artists, and they're not going to let themselves be censored. It was a funny joke, and it was absolutely appropriate.

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Also, do you know who watches Jimmy Fallon's show and listens to The Roots? College students, stoners, and hipsters. People like me. I really doubt they're going to lose any business over this. And even if they do, it doesn't make what they did intrinsically wrong.

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My last word on the topic is that NBC operates a business in the real world. They are putting Fallon on TV "solely" because they believe they can make money by selling advertising on the show. In my opinion, the want to appeal to college students (and they really don't care about stoners or hipsters unless they have money to spend). But they also use a safe host like Fallon to appeal to a much wider audience than you might think.

NBC doesn't want to alienate any segment of their audience or get advertisers mad (or potential advertisers scared).

This isn't about democrat vs. republican or liberal vs. conservative...it's about how to run a business. The Roots are the hired house band for Fallon's show and they don't get to operate independent of the show. As Lucky said a few posts before this; there is a contract somewhere protecting NBC.

I don't think you can really reprimand the band in any meaningful way, but they may get a warning that the next time something like happens...they're gone. Who knows.

In my opinion the made their employer look bad and, in the real world, that's a problem.

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I just really don't think this will have the kind of financial impact you think it will. Jimmy Fallon is a pretty safe, mainstream kind of guy, but I still doubt he has an especially huge Tea Party audience.

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You guys have listened to the kind of crap that spews out of that woman's mouth, right? We talking about a person that thinks that the suicides of gay teens are a "natural result of a disordered lifestyle". Sure, The Roots are a business, but they're also artists, and they're not going to let themselves be censored. It was a funny joke, and it was absolutely appropriate.

Absolutely agreed .... and the young rebel in me rebel is cheering them for making their statement. As are most of the show's targeted audience. However. If they were going to make a statement, using their employer's platform was the wrong choice. It's a matter of respect for the guy that signs your check basically. You don't put your employer in a bad spot. No matter what the Roots feel, Fallon feels, even NBC execs feel .... she is a Presidential candidate (or would like to be). They cannot afford to alienate her, or any other candidate that they invite to appear in the future.

I don't think there will be any huge financial impact, there will be a slap on the wrist, like a pro athlete. And it all works out for everyone really .... The Roots are releasing a new album, correct? And, like they say, any publicity is good publicity .... The Roots get to say their piece in a very pointed way, they get a slap on the wrist, they get talked about, the show gets watched, and is more firmly cemented in it's popularity with it's targeted audience. In the end it's actually win win for everybody, even Bachmann, because they are all being talked about, and that's good for business as well.

You can bet however, that the Roots won't be making any more impromptu political statements. Those pesky contracts will make sure of it.

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That's just bad manners and poor upbringing. Disrespectful to someone older, and inconsiderate to your employer. It's also passive aggressive which warrants capital punishment on its own.

Michele Bachmann doesn't deserve to be respected. I could care less what her age is, that's completely irrelevant. If she was 15 and said the garbage she's said, no one would be demanding she get her ass kissed. She's not much older than my parents, and while I would never call my mother a lyin' ass bitch, if she said the things Bachmann has, I wouldn't expect anyone else not to.

Michele Bachmann is basically an older, stupider Sarah Palin. This is the same woman who, when confronted by two gay women about her homophobic comments, started screaming out loud that she was being held hostage. This is the same woman who was photographed hiding behind bushes, spying on a gay rights rally.

She's a hateful, intolerant, ignorant, bigot. She should be grateful anyone who doesn't work for Fixed News wanted her on their damn show.

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Also, do you know who watches Jimmy Fallon's show and listens to The Roots? College students, stoners, and hipsters. People like me. I really doubt they're going to lose any business over this. And even if they do, it doesn't make what they did intrinsically wrong.

It is called basic human respect, Tim. You may not think of her as a planetary sister, but she is some mother's daughter.

Further, your disdain for this woman, who is fighting an uphill battle to become the first woman president against odds you will never know, seeps through your messages here. I thought benign tolerance toward others, regardless of gender, passions or personal choices of lifestyle, was a hallmark of liberals - the students, stoners and hipsters you mentioned.

Your posts here seem to make it appear your window to acceptance of others espousing opposing views is shuttered and locked with a prejudice that rivals that which you seem to disdain in Ms. Bachmann.

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I can respect somebody with opposing views on most political issues. Ron Paul is somebody who is my political opposite in many respects, but I respect his consistency and his persistence. However, if these allegations of racism turn out to be true, than he will have lost my respect. Mitt Romney, as well, is somebody I would never vote for and has said things during this campaign that I would vociferously argue against. I also think he's a political opportunist, changing his opinion to fit the particular electorate he's trying to court. Even with that, I respect him for being a decent governor and an obviously intelligent man.

Which brings us to Michelle Bachmann, a notorious homophobe. She has said things about homosexuals that are beyond just differing opinions. She has said that gay teen suicide is a natural result of an unnatural lifestyle. She's a bigot. So no, she does not deserve my respect and I will not give it to her. Nor do I respect Santorum or Perry. I'm sorry if that offends you, but they offend me. And if you think my disdain for Mrs. Bachmann has anything to do with her gender, you don't know me very well at all.

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