Ethics Dunce: Christine O’Donnell

Like ham and eggs, Abbott and Costello, or motherhood and apple pie, “dunce” and Christine O’Donnell will forever be paired. Why her embarrassing run for the U.S. Senate didn’t consign her to permanent obscurity I do not know, but she was back in the public eye again tonight, on an apparently slow day for getting guests for Piers Morgan, to talk about her new book. When the host dared to stray into subject matter O’Donnell didn’t want to talk about, however, she quit the interview, leaving Morgan with dead time and an empty chair.

There is no excuse for this abominable behavior. Morgan was not being rude, nor was he straying from ethical interview practices. An interviewee does not have the right to control an interview, and a public figure who is asked about public statements and the contents of a book bearing her name may not call “foul” with any justification. As for walking out in the middle of a televised interview, O’Donnell conduct is indefensible–unfair to her host, disrespectful of her audience,  uncivil, and cowardly

Morgan deserves some of the blame for agreeing to waste airtime on someone who has proven beyond any question that she possesses neither the skills, talent, intelligence, character or judgment to even qualify for D -list celebrity status, much less to be taken seriously as a political figure.

She is, in short, a dunce–ethically, socially, and intellectually. After this performance, anyone who books her for anything other than a “Dunk the Witch” carnival attraction deserves whatever they get.


Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Ethics Dunces, Etiquette and manners, Government & Politics, Journalism & Media, Popular Culture, U.S. Society

7 responses to “Ethics Dunce: Christine O’Donnell

  1. Marlene Cohn

    You know, I dislike both of them, but this whole thing was pure comedy gold.

    Piers: Let’s talk about gay marriage.
    Witch: No, we’re gonna talk about my book.
    Piers: But you talk about gay marriage in your book.
    Witch: You’re being a little bit rude.
    Piers: Why are you being so weird? Let’s talk about what’s in your book.
    Witch: I turned down another interview for this. *disappears in a cloud of smoke*

    That was uh…paraphrased of course. Any witch with an ounce of self respect would have turned Piers into a newt before leaving.

  2. Jack,
    I’ve only seen the 3 minute video you posted, not the full interview, so I can’t confirm any of this specifically; however, O’Donnell claims walking about had nothing to do with the gay marriage question, and was instead due to a series of “sexual questions” before that were inappropriate. Her staff is claiming Morgan had asked about her feelings on masturbation and then followed up by asking if she had “lust in her heart.”

    I’m not sure if these questions came in context of a similar discussion or whether Morgan was fishing, but I’m still not sure that makes her decision to walk out a good one. Claiming that conservative women are treated unfairly by the media compared with men may be valid, but simply walking off and later crying “foul” doesn’t strike me as the most effective means of protest. Moreover, during she show she said nothing of being treated unfairly because she was a woman and only began her objections after talk of gay rights came up.

    In other words .. I’m not sure what to make of it all.


    • 1) I wouldn’t trust many people less that Piers Morgan, but O’Donnell is one of them.
      2) She went through with interview, and on camera said the she objected to being asked questions she hadn’t agreed to. Presumably that means that if Morgan had caved, she would have stayed. And that means that she didn’t leave because of anything that happened before the cameras rolled.
      3) Walking out of an interview on camera is only justified when an interviewer is unequivocally abusive. Morgan wasn’t.
      4) O’Donnell’s new accusations just compound the offense,

      God, she’s an idiot!

  3. Update: The full transcript (if anyone is interested) can be read here:

  4. After reading the full transcript, your assessment was right on, bad form indeed (and yes, she IS an idiot).

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