Monday, January 29, 2007

Just Asking...Does the Punishment Fit the Crime?

Is it just me or does the whole hoopla around Isaiah Washington's homophobic outburst on the set of Grey's Anatomy seem a little overdone? For those of you who don't know, apparently Mr. Washington, who is rumored to have a bit of a temper, was having a heated on-set argument with Patrick "McDreamy" Dempsey . During said argument, Mr. Washington referred to newly outed co-star T.R. Knight as a "faggot." This all happened in October and Washington apologized. But then he apparently denied using the "f-word" when he was interviewed at the Golden Globe Awards in December. Isaiah Washington is making the front page of national newspapers for his horrific crime, is reportedly seeking therapy to help him deal with this problem, and the gossip rags are saying ABC is looking for a replacement for his character on the show!!!! I'm confused. Is it because he used a homophobic slur or is it because he lied that people are so darn angry?

Now I would never condone people walking around spewing off hateful names. I think name-calling is extremely hurtful and just plain wrong. But still, something about this scenario is making me feel like Washington is being used as some sort of example. Of what I'm not sure.

I don't want to say it.

I don't want to go there.

But I can't help it.

Is this happening because Washington is Black and he should just know better than to use hateful language? Now that's not right. In fact, it doesn't even make sense. Can't Black people be just as ignorant as White people? Can't we get a slap on the hand and be told to do better like the Mel Gibsons and Michael Richards of the world? Rosie O'Donnell didn't get fired for her highly offensive remarks about Chinese people. And she didn't get counseling and she barely even apologized. So what gives?

It seems to me Washington's biggest problem is his hot-headed temper. And isn't it odd that nobody seems to be upset that he put his hands on Patrick Dempsey during this original argument. I mean shouldn't he be getting some help at the Naomi Campbell center for anger management?

I don't think Washington's slurs or lies should be ignored, I'm just saying this ongoing public and media-fueled punishment doesn't seem to fit the crime.

Can somebody please shed some light and tell me what I might be missing?
Obama Alert: FYI: Our next president has hit the New York Times Bestseller List, not once but twice. This week his new book The Audacity of Hope sits at # 1 on the Hardcover List and his earlier memoir, Dreams from my Father, sits at #5 on the paperback list.

Peace Out!

(photo from


Lady Day said...

Lori, This is a tricky one, for real. On the one hand the punishment is a bit weird rehab for calling someone a faggot is a bit over the top. It seems to me that there is a little more going on that is not being said. Washington has an issue with anger and who but the folks who were there can really say what happened? It also seems that his cast while they love him to pieces are annoyed that his angry words are over shadowing their collective success. Now I know he is Black but he is still human and that means he is infallible. He made a mistake that he made several other times at different times. Just because he is Black doesn't mean we should lessen the effect his anger may have had on others. Also, he is probably luck to get rehab, as I know plenty of other folks in the business who just get written out of the show for "bad" behavior. It seems to me that if you are showing up for a job and going home with a paycheck you have to play by the rules or be smart enough not to get caught. Just my two cents for what they are worth. Hope everything is ok with you.....

LorMar said...

I feel its way overdone. I don't condone insults, but going to rehab over this is ridiculous.