After being chastised by Sarah Palin, defender of Phil Roberton's homophobic and racist remarks, MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry is now apologizing for joking that Mitt Romney's grandchild might marry Kanye West and Kim Kardashian's daughter. “As black child born into a large white Mormon family I feel familiarity w/ Romney family pic & never meant to suggest otherwise," Perry said over Twitter. "I apologize to all families built on loving transracial adoptions who feel I degraded their lives or choices," she added.
Perry was the target of Palin's, RNC chair Reine Priebus's, and many others' ire after she and guests on her show made fun of Romney's adopted black grandchild Kieran. She joked about a Kieran Romney-North West marriage, while her guests made remarks about the lack of diversity in the Republican party.
Those jokes did not go over well with free-speech crusader and media critic Sarah Palin. "Holy [maybe sic? Who knows?] unbelievable," she wrote. "What on earth is more beautiful [than a diverse family]? Shame on MSNBC for mocking this," she added.
While it is kind of mean to joke about someone's child marrying into the Kardashian-West family, it's pretty evident that Palin and some of Harris-Perry's critics are showing selective outrage. Palin's comments about Harris Perry's jokes are a sharp turn from what she said about Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson, when she protected his free speech to compare gay people to bestiality, alcoholics, cheats, and adulterers. Robertson told GQ:
Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men. Don’t be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers -- they won’t inherit the kingdom of God
Robertson had also claimed he never saw mistreatment of black people, and that they were downright cheery in the Jim Crow South. Palin had defended Robertson's comments without even reading them, explaining that the spirit moved her because free speech is apparently going extinct:
Free speech is an endangered species. Those “intolerants” hatin’ and taking on the Duck Dynasty patriarch for voicing his personal opinion are taking on all of us.
Clearly, Palin doesn't feel the same way about Harris-Perry's free speech.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.