Rosie O’Donnell may be worried about her job after her recent extreme remarks. After a week long vacation, "The View" co-hosts returned to discuss radio talk show host Don Imus’s recent inflammatory remarks. Elisabeth Hasselbeck came out strong against Imus and stated his punishment was not harsh enough.
ELISABETH HASSELBECK: I said he should have a time-out, and they gave him a time out.
ROSIE O’DONNELL: They did give a time out.
HASSELBECK: For two weeks, not long enough in my opinion, but they certainly did suspend him.
JOY BEHAR: How long should he stay- have time out?
HASSELBECK: I told you through February, until it’s black history month. I want him off until then.
Rosie O’Donnell, who came under fire for claiming radical Christianity is just as threatening as radical Islam, anti-Asian remarks, and her September 11 conspiracy theories, made the issue about free speech. Through the course of the discussion, she did condemn Imus’s remarks, but she was concerned that MSNBC, a private enterprise, violated his freedom of speech.
"Listen, here's the thing. There's free speech in America. You can say anything that you want in this country, and to think that you could be penalized for it, by a corporation is kind of a strange- "
Elisabeth Hasselbeck reminded the co-hosts that Don Imus has a right to say what he wants, but hosting a radio show is a privilege, not a right. Rosie and Joy Behar did not buy it. Rosie even what as far to compare it to arrests, "the thought police," and Nazi Germany.
HASSELBECK: I get it. Along with freedom of speech, there's discretion and responsibility. And I feel like we toss those two things out just for the right of freedom of speech.
O’DONNELL: Right, but once we have somebody who’s going to decide what’s the right words to say, and the wrong words to say, we're going down the Nazi Germany road.
HASSELBECK: We didn’t decide this, America decided. It’s hurtful
O’DONNELL: No, America didn't decide. I think the corporation said, you know, we don’t want--this is damaging us and we would like to take you off the air. And he’s going to go--
BEHAR: Look, they could do it to us anytime.
O’DONNELL: They can do it to anyone. It happened to Bill Maher. It happened to a lot of people.
BEHAR: About what you say about firing people for speech. You are in that position.
HASSELBECK: I am. You know what? If I said what he said, I should be fired.
BEHAR: But you don't know what you're going to say next.
HASSELBECK: Guess what? I'm not going to say that. I’m not going to say that.
BEHAR: No, not that, something else maybe.
HASSELBECK: You know what? If I say something that bad, and if it's that offensive, and if I’m a bigot, then I don't deserve the position. This is a privilege.
O’DONNELL: There are many racist people in America. We can't arrest them all. The Ku Klux Klan is allowed to speak.
HASSELBECK: He's not being arrested, he's being taken off the air for two weeks. Wow! He can take a vacation. He can go to Barbados
O’DONNELL: But, what’s the next step Elisabeth? If you say— the though police–you’re going to get--your job is going to be taken away if you think or say something?