ST. GEORGE – Kathy Griffin, a comedian known for her abrasive style of humor, has been dropped by St. George-based Squatty Potty as a spokeswoman Tuesday due to a joke Griffin has since said “went too far.”
The joke in question went viral Tuesday and involved an image of Griffin holding up a fake – yet bloodied and severed – head of President Donald Trump.
The photo has since been taken offline, and Griffin posted a short video on Twitter apologizing for the gruesome imagery.
“I sincerely apologize. … I went way too far,” she said in the video. “The image is too disturbing. I understand how it offends people. It wasn’t funny. I get it. … I beg for your forgiveness. I went too far. I made a mistake and I was wrong.”
The photo was first published by TMZ and came from a photo shoot Griffin did with photographer Tyler Shields.
In the viral wake of the photo’s release, an ad campaign launched with Squatty Potty involving Griffin has been flushed down the toilet bowl of oblivion. She has also been dropped by CNN, where she has been a New Year’s Eve show co-host for nearly a decade.
“We were shocked and disappointed to learn about the image Ms. Griffin shared today, it was deeply inappropriate and runs contrary to the core values our company stands for,” Bobby Edwards, Squatty Potty CEO, said in a statement Tuesday.
“In response, Squatty Potty has suspended its ad campaign featuring Ms. Griffin,” he said. “We have acted swiftly and decisively to demonstrate our commitment to a culture of decency, civility, and tolerance.”
The ad campaign, as reported by Adweek, started just a few weeks ago. A video had also been produced but has since been taken down.
“I am a true supporter of free speech, but feel Kathy crossed the line,” Edwards said, as reported by The Associated Press. “I regret having to make these decisions, but have no choice.”
The Squatty Potty company creates toilet stools that allows people to squat while using the toilet in order to better eliminate bodily waste when answering Mother Nature’s siren call. As the company posted on its Facebook page Wednesday, “We just want to help people poop better.”
CNN announced Wednesday it had fired Griffin from its New Year’s Eve program.
CNN has terminated our agreement with Kathy Griffin to appear on our New Year’s Eve program.
— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) May 31, 2017
In an earlier statement, CNN officials called the images “disgusting and offensive.”
Griffin’s annual partner for those Times Square telecasts, CNN correspondent Anderson Cooper, weighed in with his own reprimand: “For the record, I am appalled by the photo shoot Kathy Griffin took part in,” he tweeted. “It is clearly disgusting and completely inappropriate.”
The images ultimately drew the ire of Trump himself, who said in a tweet Wednesday that Griffin “should be ashamed of herself.”
Kathy Griffin should be ashamed of herself. My children, especially my 11 year old son, Barron, are having a hard time with this. Sick!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 31, 2017
Griffin’s twitter-based apology is featured below.
I am sorry. I went too far. I was wrong. pic.twitter.com/LBKvqf9xFB
— Kathy Griffin (@kathygriffin) May 30, 2017
The Associated Press television writer FRAZIER MOORE contributed to this article.
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