"30 Rock" actor Alec Baldwin has apologized for a series of graphic, homophobic tweets directed at Daily Mail writer George Stark, who erroneously reported that Baldwin's wife had been tweeting during the funeral of "Sopranos" actor James Gandolfini. In a letter posted on GLAAD's Web site, Baldwin attempts to clarify that his rant had "nothing to do with issues of anyone's sexual orientation":
My ill-advised attack on George Stark of the Daily Mail had absolutely nothing to do with issues of anyone's sexual orientation. My anger was directed at Mr. Stark for blatantly lying and disseminating libelous information about my wife and her conduct at our friend's funeral service. As someone who fights against homophobia, I apologize.
I have worked, periodically, with numerous marriage equality organizations, especially over the past couple of years, to achieve the very rights that gay couples are earning by recent court decisions. I would not advocate violence against someone for being gay and I hope that my friends at GLAAD and the gay community understand that my attack on Mr. Stark in no way was the result of homophobia.
GLAAD has accepted Baldwin's apology, writing, "His words yesterday do not match his history of actively supporting LGBT equality."
The apology, however, doesn't properly address the offensiveness of the tweets -- which Baldwin downplays as an "ill-advised attack" -- or offer any direct apology to Stark himself.
The Guardian's Patrick Studwick wonders how -- considering Paula Deen's entire food empire crumbled over allegations of racism -- Baldwin hasn't yet been taken to task for his repeated offenses:
Has Capital One, the credit card Baldwin advertises, dropped him? Has anyone said anything? I've not heard such a sound vacuum since a friend of mine was asked at a ritzy pool party in the Hollywood Hills what he did for a living and he replied: "Nurse".
It's not even as if this is a freakish aberration for the actor.
In 2007, he left a message on his 11-year-old daughter's phone calling her a "rude thoughtless little pig". (For someone so mired in Hollywood culture, Baldwin must surely be aware of the psychotherapeutic term 'projection'.)
Three years later he was accused of punching a photographer. A year after, with piquant misogyny, he described (on Twitter), an air stewardess who had thrown him off his flight for refusing to turn his phone off as a "retired Catholic school gym teacher". And a few months ago he admitted punching another photographer, but denied racially abusing him. When will misogyny and homophobia – two sides of the same dime – be granted equally dubious status as racism?