Autism group wants Adam “terminated” and Big Brother cancelled

Big Brother 9 houseguest Adam Jasinski’s offensive and moronic comments about autistic kids last week has prompted a group to ask for his termination and the cancellation of the series.

In a letter to CBS executives, Autism United says, “We believe Jasinski should be terminated immediately, and we believe that the show should be cancelled.” If producers kill Adam, why cancel the show and stop there? Bring back past cast members and make them pay for their (far more egregious) behavior, too.

The group adds, “While Jasinski displayed gross ignorance, the producers of the show chose to use his comments to forward the show’s storyline. This displays a conscious choice on their part to demean and hurt a large group of people to further their own commercial goals.” In a statement released to the AP, CBS defended itself by saying,

“We certainly find the statements made by Adam to be offensive but believe they were countered by the immediate reaction of shock and condemnation from a fellow houseguest, Sheila. Adam’s remarks would not have been permitted to air unchallenged.”

That’s a 180-degree turn from last year, when CBS refused to air Amber’s anti-Semitic remarks, even though those were challenged, and even though they let Dick be a Dick because they wanted to keep up their father/daughter storyline.

Besides asking for Adam to be terminated, the funniest part of the letter is this:

“Just as we are confident that CBS would not tolerate the use derogatory epithets regarding race, ethnicity, religion or sexual orientation we hope that the use of derogatory terms for people with disabilities in also unacceptable in your programming.”

Of course, CBS has done nothing but tolerate this behavior for eight years.

CBS owes an apology. People with autism are not “retards.” [Autism United]
‘Big Brother’ contestant outrages autism group [AP]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.