Especially the Blacks and the Jews

By Ta-Nehisi Coates

Jeff Goldberg links to Charlie Sheen's anti-Semitic rantings:


For no apparent reason, in both interviews Mr. Sheen said Mr. Lorre's real name is Chaim Levine. He was born Charles Levine; a Hebrew version would be Chaim. The comment struck executives at both CBS and Warner Brothers as anti-Semitic, according to an executive who had spoken with representatives of both companies.

In response to the shutdown, Mr. Sheen sent a comment to TMZ. Again he attacked Mr. Lorre, saying, "What does this say about Haim Levine [Chuck Lorre] after he tried to use his words to judge and attempt to degrade me. I gracefully ignored this folly for 177 shows." He added,"I urge all my beautiful and loyal fans who embraced this show for almost a decade to walk with me side-by-side as we march up the steps of justice to right this unconscionable wrong." 

In a previous radio appearance, Mr. Sheen had indicated he was ready to go back to work but was being prevented by the decision to shut down production. In the interviews Thursday, he expressed rage with Mr. Lorre for not doing "his job, which is to write." 

He accused Mr. Lorre of taking money from him by canceling several episodes of the show. Mr. Sheen is reported to make $1.2 million for each episode. In the TMZ interview, Mr. Sheen said, "I violently hate Chaim Levine. He's a stupid, stupid little man."

I will not claim causation, but I will say that there is a strong and avid correlation between bigotry and stupid. Two And A Half Men is the show that no one I know watches--which is to say a hell of a lot of people. It guaranteed, for Sheen, a perpetual payday on a major network. Sheen is known for his racist rants, but even getting coked-up and randomly shouting "nigger!" in a high-end restaurant wasn't enough to jeopardize his career. So I guess he had to take it up a notch.

It's amazing how little money and fame change people. You are who you are and money only multiplies it. Cash will only make you smarter, if you were interested in being smarter in the first place. I give it five years before we see this dude mud-wrestling with NeNe on Celebrity Weight-Loss Challenge.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2011/02/especially-the-blacks-and-the-jews/71710/