Grif­fin will still mock Trump

Co­me­dian says her apol­ogy over a photo stands, but she will poke fun even more.

Los Angeles Times - - CALENDAR - By Libby Hill

Kathy Grif­fin has apol­o­gized re­peat­edly for the con­tro­ver­sial photo that sparked the ire of the pres­i­dent and much of the coun­try ear­lier this week, but she has no in­ten­tion of back­ing down.

That was the take­away of a Fri­day news con­fer­ence dur­ing which the 56-year-old co­me­dian ex­pressed her re­gret for the Tyler Shields photo shoot that fea­tured Grif­fin in a pussy-bow blouse and rais­ing a blood­ied im­i­ta­tion sev­ered head bear­ing Pres­i­dent Trump’s vis­age.

“That apol­ogy ab­so­lutely stands,” Grif­fin said at the packed morn­ing news con­fer­ence held at her at­tor­ney’s of­fice in Wood­land Hills. “I apol­o­gized be­cause it was the right thing to do and I meant it.”

“Then I saw the tide turn­ing,” she con­tin­ued, adding that she has re­ceived death threats. “I saw what was hap­pen­ing. It was a mob men­tal­ity pile-on.”

Pub­lic ou­trage over the photo was im­me­di­ate on Tues­day, and Grif­fin apol­o­gized soon af­ter, but the dam­age had al­ready been done.

Pres­i­dent Trump and

fam­ily spec­u­lated on Twit­ter about Grif­fin’s men­tal health, say­ing that she should be ashamed and call­ing for CNN to fire her from her New Year’s Eve host­ing gig, which the ca­ble news net­work did.

It was the Trump fam­ily’s in­volve­ment that ou­traged Grif­fin’s at­tor­ney, Lisa Bloom, who fo­cused the news con­fer­ence on the in­ap­pro­pri­ate­ness of the pres­i­dent’s be­hav­ior.

Bloom listed sev­eral artists who had his­tor­i­cally used vi­o­lent imagery against Trump or for­mer pres­i­dents, in­clud­ing Mu­nic­i­pal Waste, Mar­i­lyn Man­son and Gwar, not­ing that none of them had ever apol­o­gized for their artistry.

“Un­like these male artists, Kathy has apol­o­gized,” Bloom said dur­ing the news con­fer­ence. “Un­like these male artists, Kathy has en­dured the most pow­er­ful man in Amer­ica, and his fam­ily, us­ing their power to tar­get her and her em­ploy­ers af­ter she apol­o­gized.”

“What’s hap­pen­ing to me has never hap­pened in this great coun­try,” Grif­fin said. “A sit­ting pres­i­dent of the U.S. is per­son­ally try­ing to ruin my life for­ever.”

The photo it­self, fea­tur­ing the pres­i­dent’s ketchup-blood­ied like­ness, Grif­fin ex­plained, was in­spired by Trump’s com­ments about Megyn Kelly dur­ing the pres­i­den­tial cam­paign. “You could see there was blood com­ing out of her eyes, blood com­ing out of her wher­ever,” Trump said back then.

Grif­fin said she was well aware of sex­ism, hav­ing worked her en­tire life in a male-dom­i­nated in­dus­try.

“I’m not afraid of Don­ald Trump,” she said. “He’s a bully. I’ve dealt with older white guys try­ing to keep me down my whole life, my whole ca­reer.”

But Grif­fin knew im­me­di­ately af­ter the photo had gone live that she had made a grave mis­cal­cu­la­tion.

“I don’t know if I’m go­ing to be ar­rested to­day. I don’t know,” Grif­fin said, re­fer­ring to the Se­cret Ser­vice’s in­ves­ti­ga­tion of the photo.

De­spite her fear and the loss of an en­dorse­ment and sev­eral book­ings, Grif­fin promised to re­dou­ble her ef­forts to lam­poon the pres­i­dent, be­cause her job as a co­me­dian de­manded it.

“I’m go­ing to make fun of him more now. More,” Grif­fin em­pha­sized, just as she had done with past pres­i­dents.

“Re­mem­ber the Mon­ica dress days?” Grif­fin asked in a nod to the jokes she made dur­ing the Clin­ton ad­min­is­tra­tion. “Those were the days. You could make dress jokes all day long and no­body would try to kill you.”

The co­me­dian vac­il­lated be­tween somber and fre­netic through­out the news con­fer­ence, mak­ing jokes to cover for nerves and of­ten dis­solv­ing into tears.

When ques­tioned about CNN co-host and friend An­der­son Cooper call­ing the photo “dis­gust­ing and com­pletely in­ap­pro­pri­ate,” Grif­fin fell silent by her tears, even­tu­ally mur­mur­ing, “That hurt. That’s all.”

It’s un­clear whether Grif­fin’s bravado was all for show or if she’s gear­ing up for a full-fledged fight with Trump and his back­ers. She ad­mit­ted, “I don’t think I’ll have a ca­reer af­ter this. He broke me.” Then again, she also threw down the gaunt­let ear­lier in the morn­ing: “He picked the wrong red­head.”

Al Seib Los An­ge­les Times

COMIC Kathy Grif­fin gets emo­tional at a news con­fer­ence on Fri­day.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.