How Paula Deen Could Hurt Alec Baldwin

Alec Baldwin Twitter Rant

Timing couldn't be worse for actor's homophobic remarks

Had the controversy over Paula Deen never happened, Alec Baldwin wouldn’t be sweating today. But maybe he should be.

While yet another social-media outburst from the “30 Rock” star might typically prompt nothing more than a yawn, using Twitter to issue a string of homophobic insults to a British reporter who suggested his wife was tweeting while in attendance at the funeral of James Gandolfini could be problematic.

While some may believe Baldwin was entitled to anger given the incorrect allegation, the hurtful words he chose to use in her defense could come back to haunt him.

The actor is no stranger to this kind of controversy when you think back to everything from his verbal fisticuffs with flight attendants who suggest he put his smartphone away to a voicemail putdown directed at his own daughter. But he typically manages to emerge unscathed and the public forgets.

But timing could complicate matters for him this time, and in more ways than one.

First, his indiscretion comes just days after the very public implosion of Paula Deen, who has lost key deals from her home on the Food Network to endorsement deals with Walmart and Caesars over the revelation that she made racist remarks including the N word.

While Baldwin’s homophobic comments may not have been on the nuclear level of the N word, the companies that either cast him in programs or the many brands that use him for endorsements could feel they will be vulnerable to criticism of a double standard should they not distance themselves from him.

Luckily, NBC has nothing to worry about considering his days on “30 Rock” are over, but there are plenty of marketers in business who could be thinking like this, including Capital One, for whom he’s long been a very visible pitchman on TV. Plus he has all sorts of ancillary projects like a radio show on WNYC, “Here’s the Thing.”

Second, Baldwin couldn’t have picked a worse time to sound a homophobic note considering we are in the midst of a pretty historic week given the Supreme Court rulings in support of gay marriage. Intolerance is not acceptable any time of year, but when there’s a heightened consciousness on an issue, it looks all the worse.

Had Deen’s disastrous week or the Supreme Court decisions not occurred this week, it’s quite possible that Baldwin might have skated through his latest outburst. But sometimes these extrinsic circumstances can play a crucial role in the optics of a celebrity sin, and Baldwin is about to find that out the hard way.

One thing Baldwin has done to help him out of this mess: apologize. Instead of following Deen’s example, he may have moved to do so sincerely and quickly as his former “30 Rock” cast mate Tracy Morgan did after making some particularly vicious homophobic remarks in his stand-up act last year.

Acting fast could keep Baldwin from feeling a pinch in his pocket as endorsement and casting opportunities start to dwindle. The risk for irreparable harm to his career is quite real.

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  1. Janel Butisbauch says:

    Actually, Paula Deen isn’t hurting Alec Baldwin…..Alec Baldwin is hurting Alec Baldwin. He and his rants are getting old, and people are sick of him. So what if it was his wife that someone tweeted about? Is he nothing better than Twitter Drama? He carries on like a Jr Jigher. He needs to grow up.

  2. Denell Stein says:

    You can judge these people all you want IF you’ve NEVER made a mistake in your life. Otherwise shut up and get over yourself.

  3. pam hurley says:

    We are a business with a Capital One credit card; if Capital One does not IMMEDIATELY pull Alec Baldwin as its spokesman, we will close our account and launch a campaign for others to do the same.

  4. am says:

    Alec Baldwin has been an ass**hole for a long and has gotten away with it.
    But if Paula Deen can be publicly lynched for comments she made years ago,
    shouldn’t Alec Baldwin been held to the same standards.

  5. He gets away with it (and will continue to do so) because it has become a part of his image (much the way Charlie Sheen’s drug-anger-crazy-off-the-wall-rants have become part of his image). Unlike Paula Deen, Alec Baldwin and Charlie Sheen get hired BECAUSE of their inappropriate behavior (they are like the crazy uncle you invite to Thanksgiving knowing he’s going to say insulting inappropriate things that will, one day, make for funny story-telling). As far as Paula Deen, she’s a woman. Her use of expletives and offensive racial slurs will be less tolerated because (1) her empire was built on her being a sweet, lovable, southern grandma (who knew grandma wanted a wedding staffed with black slaves?) and (2) she’s a woman (I know — but let’s not pretend women aren’t held to a different standard or are judged the same as men in this society — they aren’t). Having said that, both Alec and Paula have another unfortunate thing in common that bonds them in addition to their racial/homophobic comments, THEY BOTH HAVE HORRIBLE PR TEAMS. The Food Network admitted that they pretty much HAD to fire Deen because her PR team botched her apology so badly (with three horribly edited videos that left people scratching their head) and Baldwin admitted that he fired his entire PR team (he’s his own PR machine — right, how’s that workin’ out for you?). In the case of Baldwin, it’s all the more obvious how much he desperately needs a good PR team when you consider the fact that the British reporter who claimed his wife tweeted during Galdofini’s funeral was WRONG — which means Baldwin missed a golden opportunity to have the public on his side and to speak of the dangers of mainstream media running with a wrong-story or tweet without doing research. Alas, he blew it… again. Paula can’t hurt Alec. Alec can’t hurt Paula. What they CAN do is a cross-country tour together called “This is OUR America” (no blacks, gays, Mexicans, publicists or reasonably intelligent people allowed). Of course, I’m kidding about the cross-country tour.

  6. Celia Nazaroff says:

    We’ll see how far his (fading) good looks carry him this time…

  7. capital one just say no to alec says:

    Baldwin deserves the same fate as Deen, but I am sure he will be given a pass.

  8. Paul says:

    I would love to have had the offending remarks Baldwin supposedly made recapped in this story. Hard to form an opinion without them.

  9. capital one just say no to alec says:

    I don’t know how he gets away with the racist, sexist and homophobic rants, not to mention his child. Paula Deen said something 30 years ago having been robbed with a gun pointed at her head and the media will not be happy until she kills herself.

    • mambo207 says:

      Do you actually believe that that’s the only time she’s ever used that word? People that do that type of thing have a history of it – as we see by this article about Alec Baldwin. Someone who fantasies about plantation styled wedding, like the good old days, has only used a racial slur once in her life. Yeah right. If you believe that, I have a Bridge in Brooklyn you might be interested in buying.

  10. What’s fair is fair in this strange world, I’m calling on Capital One to fire Alec Baldwin.

    • W. Curtis Kelley says:

      Just because a person was raised in a time when it was allowed to use like the N-word, does not mean the person has not changed with the times. If everyone who “ever” used the N-word was fired, nearly everyone 40 years old or older would be fired from their job. Paula Deen’s real mistake was to admit that at one time in her life she used the N-word. She should be recognized for becoming a better person.

      Alec Baldwin has no excuse, he was as wrong, if not more so, and he should be held accountable. To make it worse, his comments comes at a time when the gay movement is gaining ground from the Supreme Court’s recent ruling. Then he lies to us and said that his use of “queen” is not homophobic, when the use of the word “queen’ has a long history of being used to identify a gay person. So during his uncontrolled moment of anger, his true feelings toward gays were exposed.

      Additionally during this recent rant, Alec has threatened to “f***” someone up, which is in effect an unlawful threat to assault someone.

  11. Karen says:

    NBC is lambasting Paula Deen for her language decades ago after she was robbed. Yet, the are strangely silent on their frequent guest’s numerous and recent hate speech.

  12. Personally, I wrote him off as an actor-to-watch-in-anything when he took off on his own daughter with his nasty mind and mouth. (I never watched 30 Rock again). I believe this man has proven himself to be the worst kind of public figure possible – a mindless bully. His recurring angry outbursts attest to this. This does not diminish, however, the outrageous reasons for his most recent outburst, considering the circumstances and emotions therein. But the accumulative evidence of his inability to react to adversity in a rational and respectful manner speak to deeper and perhaps larger issues. I only hope he receives some good advice from trusted friends and family. Possibly some professional help is warranted. He really needs it, before one of his foul-mouthed over-the-top outbursts gets him or someone else hurt.

  13. Vickie says:

    I think this article is “stirring” up a brew for news. Yes, Alec Baldwin does have a temper but I have to say he does have reason to lash out when reporters and photographers play to his temper. Should he learn how to control it and the onslaught of words that he responds with? Yes, and he probably will. However, even I was pi$$ed when I read why he was angry. I would be too. That was just plain irresponsible of that reporter who was obviously just looking to get his name out there.

    • MBK says:

      “Probably will”? Baldwin’s track record doesn’t seem to be moving in that direction. Defending your wife from a jerk journalist is fine, but don’t be an abusively offensive jerk yourself in the process. Racial and homophobic slurs are unacceptable from anyone, but any brand that gives such behavior by their celebrity spokesperson a pass is condoning social media thuggery at the loftiest levels. Baldwin may know better, but apparently he can’t help himself. He meant to demean, and he demeaned millions of people who don’t deserve it in the process. His treatment of his daughter should have been enough to permanently tar him as a pitchman and public figure. He turned his boorish behavior as an airline passenger — subject to annoying federal regulations like everyone else — into a smirking joke. Now this. At this juncture, any apology, no matter how prompt, rings disingenuously hollow. It’s time for corrective action. The shaming of Alec Baldwin is long overdue, and if Capitol One and others don’t have the fortitude to do the right thing, shame on them as well.

  14. He’s not a woman, he’s not a southerner, and he has the luxury of being accepted as a quick-tempered foul-mouthed oaf. He’ll weather the tempest, will get his Twitter account back (with even more followers), and will likely keep his lucrative endorsements. Another plus for Alec…his “victim” wasn’t a violent ethnic thug. He’ll be fine.

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