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Natasha Leggero: 'I'm not sorry' for offensive 'joke' aimed at Pearl Harbor vets

Actress Natasha Leggero says she's "not sorry" for mocking survivors of Pearl Harbor attack.
Actress Natasha Leggero says she's "not sorry" for mocking survivors of Pearl Harbor attack.
NBC via The Wrap

While appearing on NBC's “New Year’s Eve with Carson Daly,” Natasha Leggero offended a number of people when she mocked survivors of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. On Friday, she told fans on her Tumblr page that she refuses to apologize for her comments.

Leggero was discussing a recent Pearl Harbor Day tweet by SpaghettiOs that landed Campbell's in a bit of controversy.

“Take a moment to remember #PearlHarbor with us,” the tweet said

"It offended a lot of people, corporations glomming on to, you know, sentimental American historic traditions, seemingly looking for people in business. It wasn't good. But you were offended for another reason," Daly said.

“I’m offended because they were referring to SpaghettiOs as pasta,” Jane Lynch said.

“It sucks that the only survivors of Pearl Harbor are being mocked by the only food they can still chew,” Leggero added.

The remarked sparked anger across the country prompting many to respond with angry tweets and threats.

"It’s been a busy few days but rest assured, I have received all of your messages and have been busy sifting through the different creatively misspelled death threats, rape fantasies and most of all repeated use of the the C word. In the past few days I have been called a c**t so much I felt like I was in a British pub rooting for the wrong soccer team," she wrote. "I wish I could apologize, but do you really want another insincere apology that you know is just an attempt at damage control and not a real admission of guilt? Let me just try instead to be honest."

"I’m not sorry," she added. "I don’t think the amazing courage of American veterans and specifically those who survived Pearl Harbor is in any way diminished by a comedian making a joke about dentures on television. Do we really believe that the people who fought and defended our freedom against Nazis and the Axis powers will find a joke about Spaghetti O’s too much to bear? Sorry, I have more respect for Veterans than to think their honor can be impugned by a glamorous, charming comedian in a fur hat."

Leggero suggested those who took offense at her comment donate to the Disabled American Veterans Foundation.

"My own father lost his hearing in the Vietnam War so the issue is pretty close to me too. So rather than apologize, let me offer another perspective," she said.

"On the one hand you have me, making a joke about how old people can’t chew tough foods very well," she wrote. "On the other hand you have Veterans who receive inadequate care upon their return from active duty, rampant sexual assault against female soldiers, staggering rates of suicide, traumatic brain injury, PTSD, substance abuse and depression among soldiers and political gridlock that prevents these problems from getting solved quickly."

"Where do you think your outrage and action would be better served, calling me a c**t or doing something about the above problems?" she asked.

Leggero went on to assure fans she loves veterans, invited SpagettiOs to "do lunch" and advised the elderly to "chew."

Newsbusters' Noel Sheppard commended Leggero for her donation to the veterans group but said that "without a real apology to those she's offended, all Leggero has done is spend some money to ease her conscience."



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