"Little People Of America" Have Big Problem With "Celebrity Apprentice"

The group Little People of America called Sunday for the Federal Communications Commission to ban the use of the word "midget" on broadcast TV.

Leaders of the group said the word, which was prominently featured in an episode of NBC's "Celebrity Apprentice," is as offensive as racial slurs.

"Historically, the word 'midget' has been used to objectify people, like in the circus," said Clinton Brown III, co-chairman of the 52nd Annual National Conference of Little People of America, which is taking place in New York this week. "We're in the 21st century. We're beyond that."

In the April 5 "Celebrity Apprentice" episode, contestants including Joan Rivers created a detergent ad called "Jesse James and the Midgets." The contestants suggested bathing little people in the detergent and hanging them to dry.

Members of Little People of America responded by filing a complaint with the FCC.

"This is not just a complaint but a kickoff to educate Americans unaware that the 'M-word' is offensive to little people," said Michael Petruzzelli, whose 6-year-old son is a little person.

Calls to the FCC and "Celebrity Apprentice" host Donald Trump were not returned Sunday. NBC Universal representatives didn't immediately respond to e-mail messages, and the telephone rang unanswered at their Los Angeles office.


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  • by Ted Location: Greenville on Jul 8, 2009 at 05:32 PM
    I am offended every time the bank tells me no! and I want it stopped immediately or else!!!!
  • by Earl Location: Pitt County on Jul 8, 2009 at 12:52 PM
    Looks like we will have to ban The Wizard of Oz from TV. Obviously calling someone a munchkin is offensive and hateful. Senseless violence, drug use, vulgarity, and soft porn are perfectly acceptable on TV, but we certainly can't allow anyone to be called a midget.
  • by growing and learning. on Jul 8, 2009 at 12:46 PM
    Sticks and stones my break your bones but words can never hurt you. I have been called so many names myself. I am still living. I can't understand this mess. I have heard people call so many names, it just makes a person stronger. A person calling names is 100% worse than the peson they are calling the name. So get over it. They are the bad ones, not a person who gets called the name.
  • by ace Location: plymouth on Jul 8, 2009 at 11:42 AM
    Your may call them little people(Politically correct, do not offend anyone) but they are still a midget by Websters definition
  • by Bob Location: Belhaven on Jul 8, 2009 at 08:49 AM
    Is there any group in America that are smart enough to realize that any word will only have negative impact on you if you let it. Redneck, white trash, cracker, fatty,Christian, doesn't bother me to the point that I am going to make an issue of it! Now calling me a "progressive liberal-might*haha) but I am not going to be so "thin skinned" to let it have a lasting impact! Filing a complaint with the FCC over this is just plain stupid. The FCC should be trying to stop the graffic nudity, foul language on tv during prime time and on music with vulgar and demeaning lyrics. The nudity and foul language doesn't bother me but young children is another matter. Don't start telling me about the historic use of slurs and racial terms. It only causes you pain if you let it. If it does then the person using it has won and nothing will stop there use of it, because it has done what they intended, to cause you pain or belittle you! Now don't call me liberal or I will go weeping and feel bad about me
  • by Sam on Jul 8, 2009 at 08:33 AM
    I don't see what's so offensive about it. I know of two of what's known as midgets that refer themselves as midgets and take no offense to being called a midget. This just sounds like another way of someone trying to get some publicity. There is no telling.
  • by Anonymous Location: MHC on Jul 8, 2009 at 08:32 AM
    This is getting out of hand. Where does it end? Soon we will not be allowed to say anything. Fat people will want the word obese used, retarded people will want mentally challenged. What happened to freedom of speech? Are we to change everything just to please a few? It is 2009, grow some thicker skin people.
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