Rosie Bails Out Three Weeks Early

Does it really come as a surprise that Rosie O'Donnell would cut and run from The View?  It's the foreign policy she's advocated for so long.

O'Donnell, after announcing in April that she would not renew her contract to continue as a co-host of The View, has left three weeks earlier than previously planned. 

Her accelerated departure came on the heels of an on-air argument with the show's lone non-liberal, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, on Wednesday, May 23. O'Donnell angrily accused Hasselbeck of failing to defend her after she came under fire for implying that U.S. troops in Iraq are “terrorists.”

The latest maelstrom began on The View on May 17, when O'Donnell stated “655,000 Iraqi civilians are dead.  Who are the terrorists?”

O'Donnell quickly came under fire from conservative critics.   O'Donnell had the opportunity to correct any “misinterpretations” of her statement on The View on May 21, when Hasselbeck bluntly asked her “What is the answer to the question?  Who are the terrorists?” 

Rather than defending her outrageous statistic or exonerating the troops, O'Donnell attempted to mince words: “I'm talking about a word, 'terrorism,' that the administration has used to terrify this country.  They're terrorizing Americans by using that word and taking away our civil liberties.”

Maybe O'Donnell was talking about the word “terrorism,” but the word that came out of her mouth was “terrorists.” 

O'Donnell has long been a champion of free speech.  In defense of Don Imus, she stated “There's free speech in America.  You can say anything that you want in this country.” 

And she does understand that freedom of speech goes hand-in-hand with responsibility, as she's never afraid to point out to others.   

On the March 1 episode, O'Donnell related a story in which she was at a pizza parlor and overheard a teenager say to another “Oh God, you're such a lesbian.”  According to her, she turned around and asked the kids “Is that an insult?”  O'Donnell went on to ask the group if being a lesbian was a bad thing, forcing the kids to clarify the intent of the word.  

Or take her feud with Kelly Ripa.  As reported on Newsbusters last November, Rosie called Ripa “homophobic” for telling rumored homosexual Clay Aiken, “Oh that's a no-no…I don't know where your hands have been” when he tried to “hush” her by placing his hand over her mouth. 

O'Donnell's year on The View was full of controversy from the start.  In September, she announced that “radical Christianity is just as threatening as radical Islam in a country like America.” 

She also engaged in public feuds with Donald Trump and Bill O'Reilly. Additionally, she made vulgar remarks at an awards ceremony with teenaged girls in the audience. 

Rosie O'Donnell is eager to hold others accountable for what they say, but when finally held accountable for one of her own obnoxious remarks, O'Donnell cuts and runs.  Why should anyone else defend O'Donnell's words when she cannot defend them herself? 

Colleen Raezler is a research assistant at the Culture and Media Institute, a division of the Media Research Center.