A black news anchor was compared to a gorilla live on-air – he’s calling it a ‘teachable moment’ that ‘words matter’.
Alex Housden, a white TV anchor for KOCO 5 News, ended a segment about a gorilla at the Oklahoma City Zoo by saying to her co-anchor Jason Hackett, ‘Kinda looks like you.’
While Hackett initially responded with: ‘He kind of does, actually, yeah,’ the backlash was immediately brewing online.
People commenting and sharing the video online called Housden’s comments ‘disrespectful’ and ‘flat-out appalling’.
The next day, Housden made a very tearful on-air apology to Hackett, saying she was ‘inconsiderate’ and ‘inappropriate’.
Hackett then said he accepted and appreciated Housden’s apology, explaining they are friends outside of the job and talk almost every other day.
However the anchor added that Housden’s words were wrong and ‘it cut deep for me, and it cut deep for a lot of you in the community.’
‘Much like a plumber would use a wrench, or a doctor would use a scalpel,’ Hackett added that words are tools that should be used to build a stronger union; not to hurt, nor divide.