UNITY Exec. Dir. says Rosie O'Donnell's Racial Comments Must Not Go On Unchecked

Posted by AC Team on Monday, 11 December 2006.

UNITY Exec. Director urges ABC's "The View" producer Barbara Walters to make a public statement acknowledging racial comments by Rosie O'Donnell are offensive and unacceptable

The offensive behavior displayed by "The View" co-host Rosie O'Donnell in attempting to mimic the Chinese language reflects poorly on ABC Daytime and the show's producer, ABC News correspondent Barbara Walters.

UNITY: Journalists of Color represents more than 10,000 journalists nationwide from diverse ethnic and racial backgrounds, including Chinese American.

In one brief action, O'Donnell and "The View" not only offended Chinese Americans, but all of UNITY's partner organizations: the Asian American Journalists Association, the National Association of Black Journalists, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, and the Native American Journalists Association.

"The View" offers robust commentary on issues of the day, which viewers tune in to learn what the show's high-profile women think about these topics. When one of the co-hosts demeans and mocks the language of an entire race of people on national television, it warrants an explanation by the show's producer at least, and by the network at most.

UNITY recognizes that while O'Donnell is an entertainer and not a broadcast journalist, her producer is one. As producer, Walters should publicly acknowledge that O'Donnell's remarks were patently offensive and that such insults should have no place on the public airwaves.

By allowing O'Donnell's cheap jab at Chinese Americans to go unchecked, the network is essentially condoning racial and ethnic slurs.

It's a practice that should not be tolerated in today's diverse society.

That's our view.

For more information about this commentary contact:

Onica Makwakwa
Executive Director
(703) 854-3585

About UNITY: Journalists of Color
UNITY: Journalists of Color, Inc. is a strategic alliance advocating news coverage about people of color, and aggressively challenging its organizations at all levels to reflect the nations diversity. UNITY, representing more than 10,000 journalists of color, is comprised of four national associations: Asian American Journalists Association, National Association of Black Journalists, National Association of Hispanic Journalists, and the Native American Journalists Association.

In addition to planning the largest regular gathering of journalists in the nation, UNITY develops programs and institutional relationships that promote its mission. For more information on UNITY, visit www.unityjournalists.org, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call (703) 854-3585.