Greeson: Apologizing for being insensitive or not being politically correct

Greeson: Apologizing for being insensitive or not being politically correct

May 16th, 2019 by Jay Greeson in Opinion Columns
Jay Greeson

Jay Greeson

Photo by Dan Henry /Times Free Press.

Terry Bradshaw apologized earlier this week for calling actor Ken Jeong "that little short guy from Japan." Jeong is a Korean American.

Bradshaw and Jeong, one of the funniest character actors working, are longtime friends.

"I made an insensitive remark today about Ken, who I've known for some time. I've spoken to him about the importance of cultural respect and apologized for my offensive comments," Bradshaw said in a statement. "I would like to also apologize to the Asian-American community for my insensitivity."

OK, hopefully that will be the end of it.

But are the terms "insensitive" and "politically correct" the same thing? I ask because of the exchange in Bradshaw's comments.

Bradshaw's controversial quote was made during an appearance on "Fox Upfront" after he was asked about his brief stint on the tricked-up TV show "Masked Singer,"

"I love to sing, as all of you know who have my records," Bradshaw joked with Michael Strahan during the interview. "Unfortunately, I was kicked off by Alan Thicke and the little short guy from Japan."

Even in that answer Bradshaw embraced his "Southern country dumb" to the point that surely everyone had to realize he was joking, but I guess that would be too much to ask.

It's something that Jeong has also successfully done. He, like Bradshaw, has over-exaggerated his heritage and cultural stereotypes to lucrative and professional success.

We know Bradshaw is the latest to spin the "aw shucks" Southern accent.

Jeong was a Duke University-educated ER doctor before embracing the silliness of such great comedies as "The Hangover" series and "Crazy Rich Asians."

Bradshaw's reaction was expected, not unlike our collective response to anything the social media morality mob overreacts to — we are super quick to apologize and move one.

Truth is, in this case, the Thicke family deserved the first apology.

The judge that booted Bradshaw was actually Robin Thicke. His famous father, Alan, Dr. Jason Seaver from "Growing Pains," died in 2016.

Bradshaw's misstep there seems way more insensitive than a misfired joke between buddies.

And the order of the apologies on this one tell me that being politically correct is way more important than being sensitive these days.

Contact Jay Greeson at jgreeson@timesfreepress.com.

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