By now, you’ve undoubtedly heard about or actually viewed Kathy Griffin’s controversial new photoshoot, in which she held Trump’s bloody decapitated head sorta like shock-rocker Marilyn Manson did in a short clip on Election Day. A few fun facts: (1) No one is shocked by behavior like this from Marilyn Manson, but there’s one degree of separation here; (2) Manson’s clip was directed by provocateur Tyler Shields, who also photographed Griffin for what is turning out to be a catastrophic shoot that has offended (or befuddled) both ends of the political spectrum. The clip may have, unfortunately for Griffin, affected her regular gig at CNN.
A few hours after the outrage flowed, Griffin finally appeared to understand what the fuss was all about. She apologized for going “way too far,” but the damage may have already been done. By then, CNN anchor Jake Tapper had addressed the matter on air and tweet-declared that Griffin’s photos were “disgusting and inappropriate.”
Tapper was echoed on “the record” by fellow CNN host Anderson Cooper, who regularly co-hosts an annual disaster of a New Year’s Eve extravaganza each year with Griffin in NYC’s Times Square. The Coop was “appalled” by the shoot that he feels is “clearly disgusting and completely inappropriate.”
If you were wondering why Tapper and Coop sounded so similar in their denunciations of Griffin’s actions, the following CNN statement might explain a few things. The network also used “disgusting” to condemn the photos, but CNN is “evaluating” New Year’s Eve and hasn’t decided anything yet:
“We found what she did disgusting and offensive. We are pleased to see she has apologized and asked that the photos be taken down. We are evaluating New Year’s Eve and have made no decisions at this point.”
So, it sounds like CNN is leaving things open for Griffin to make further amends for her decision to simulating a Trump beheading. And if anyone is feeling particularly generous, this could be spun as Griffin’s acquiescence with Tyler Shields’ artistic decision to shoot the provocative imagery in the first place. Yet Shields does arrive with an envelope-tearing reputation, so Griffin had to know she was pushing plenty of buttons with such a gory evocation. There are no winners here, and CNN is likely taking their time in making a decision. After all, NYE is more than half a year away!