Response to Apology by CBS Sports' Feherty

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Erikka Knuti (202) 756-4135 eknuti@mediamatters.org

Jessica Levin (202) 772-8162 jlevin@mediamatters.org

Response to Apology by CBS Sports' Feherty

Statements from Media Matters for America and VoteVets.org

WASHINGTON - Today,
VoteVets.org and Media Matters for America
responded to CBS Sports golf analyst David Feherty's apology
for his controversial comments that "if you gave any U.S.
soldier a gun with two bullets in it, and he found himself in an elevator with
Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and Osama bin Laden, there's a good chance that
Nancy Pelosi would get shot twice, and Harry Reid and bin Laden would be
strangled to death."

Eric Burns, President of Media Matters:

"I
am pleased to see Mr. Feherty apologize for insulting Speaker Pelosi and
Majority Leader Reid with his disturbing comments. It is disappointing,
however, that Mr. Feherty, who has shown such dedication to helping our troops,
failed to apologize for his inappropriate suggestion that, given the
opportunity, American soldiers would attack the leaders of the very democracy
they have sworn to defend."

Jon Soltz, Iraq
war veteran and chairman of VoteVets.org:

"Having
spent so much time with troops, David Feherty has to know that his statement
wasn't just offensive to Speaker Pelosi and Senator Reid, but to those of
us who served. To even joke that we'd consider inflicting physical harm
on our elected officials is way off base. Even those of us who disagreed with
President Bush's policies would have put our lives on the line to protect
him. Feherty also has to know that the vast majority of troops do not take
violence lightly -- we do it out of necessity in the war zone. A joke
that's based on the premise that a majority of troops would be equally as
violent at home, if only given the chance, isn't one that most troops
would laugh at."

BACKGROUND:

As
Media Matters documented, in the April issue of D
Magazine
,
Feherty wrote:

From my own experience
visiting the troops in the Middle East, I can tell you this, though: despite
how the conflict has been portrayed by our glorious media, if
you gave any U.S. soldier a gun with two bullets in it, and he found himself in
an elevator with Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and Osama bin Laden, there's a
good chance that Nancy Pelosi would get shot twice, and Harry Reid and bin
Laden would be strangled to death
. I've never met a soldier
who didn't love
this president and this country, and I've
met a bunch of them, at home and abroad, in hospitals and in theater. At Walter
Reed, Bethesda Naval
Medical Center,
and the Brooke Army
Medical Center
in San Antonio,
I have visited dozens of patients, and I always ask of them before I leave: "What do you want to do
when you get out?"
No matter how broken or burned, or how many limbs they are missing, they give
only one answer: "I
want to go back. I want to rejoin my team, to finish our mission." They are rightfully
proud of what they have done and want nothing more than to be with their brothers
and sisters in arms, because they know the consequences if their job is left
unfinished.

After portions of Feherty's
column, including his comments about Pelosi and Reid, were read during the May 8
broadcast of The Rush Limbaugh Show, Media
Matters

requested that
CBS Sports ask Feherty to apologize. On May 10, Feherty responded to the controversy:

"This
passage was a metaphor meant to describe how American troops felt about our
43rd president,"
Feherty said in a statement. "In
retrospect, it was inappropriate and unacceptable, and has clearly insulted
Speaker Pelosi and Senator Reid, and for that, I apologize. As for our troops,
they know I will continue to do as much as I can for them both at home and
abroad."

###

Media Matters for America is a Web-based, not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) progressive research and information center dedicated to comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media.

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