Saturday, September 12, 2009

Does Anyone Else Find This Offensive?

I was listening to an interview yesterday on National Public Radio's "Fresh Air" with Terry Gross. She was speaking with the creator of a new show on TV called "Glee". I guess it's about a teacher who is trying to help out a rag tag group of students who want to start a show choir. It's a comedy. They played a short soundbite from the show, and it hit me hard. I found the transcript of the interview and particularly the soundbite transcript. It's a discussion between the teacher trying to form the show choir and apparently his arch nemesis.
(Soundbite of television program, "Glee")

Ms. JANE LYNCH (Actor): (As Sue Sylvester) So I had a little chat with Principal Figgins, and he said that if your group doesn't place at regional, he's cutting the program. Ouch.

Mr. MATTHEW MORRISON (Actor): (As Will Schuester): You know, you don't have to worry about glee club. We're going to be fine.

Ms. LYNCH: (As Sylvester) Really? Because I was at the local library, where I read Cheerleading Today aloud to blind geriatrics, and I came across this little page-turner: "Show Choir Rule Book." And it turns out you need 12 kids to qualify for regionals. Last time I looked, you only had five and a half. Here - cripple in a wheelchair. I also took the liberty of highlighting some special ed. classes for you. Maybe you could find some recruits because I'm not sure there's anybody else who's going to want to swim over to your island of misfit toys.

Mr. MORRISON: (As Schuester) Are you threatening me, Sue?

Ms. LYNCH: (As Sylvester) Threatening you? Oh no, no, no, presenting you with an opportunity to comprise yourself? You betcha.


Oddly, I just had the part about the special ed classes on my brain but wow, that's overly offensive on so many levels now that I read it instead of hear it.

Hey, I have a great sense of humor, and I laugh at a lot of offensive stuff. Clearly they are trying to portray this character as an insensitive bitch, but they are also trying to be funny. I don't think this is funny. I don't think the fact that I personally have to have our son in a grouping of "Special Ed." funny in the first place, or that he has to be segregated by it or that the buses for the "Special Ed." are always short and are the brunt of many jokes. Don't people in "Special Ed. classes" have enough to contend without being put down on television where millions more can laugh and get humor out of their situation?

Am I overreacting to this? I hope to hear from a lot of you on this one. In all fairness, here is the whole transcript to be fair, but reading the rest doesn't really change my feelings.... And if you feel the same way I do, what can we do about this?
http://www.npr.org/templates/transcript/transcript.php?storyId=112721367