June 16th, 2009
09:04 PM ET
14 years ago

Letterman protest draws more media than activists

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/06/16/art.lateshow0616.gi.jpg caption="Fifteen protesters showed up Tuesday outside of the studio where David Letterman tapes his talk show program."]
NEW YORK (CNN) - A protest rally against David Letterman over a failed joke about Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and her daughter attracted more members of the media than protesters Tuesday afternoon.

A crowd of 15 protesters upset with the late night comic held signs and occasionally shouted as they stood across the street from Letterman's studio.

But they were often hidden from view by the more than 35 members of the media there to cover the protest, and out-shouted by a few very vocal counter-protesters.

Radio talk show host John Ziegler - who is behind the FireDavidLetterman.com Web site that organized the protest, and who is an outspoken supporter of the former Republican vice presidential candidate - told reporters that the turnout at the event was not representative of the number of people who have responded to his site and e-mailed.

He also argued that Letterman should have been fired, and the only reasons that he hasn't been fired were "the media's love of David Letterman and the media's distrust and, I believe, hatred of Sarah Palin."

He also called Letterman's apology - issued on Monday's program and accepted by Palin - bogus and said that the comedian should make a charitable donation to an organization of Palin's choosing.

Ziegler made a film about the 2008 presidential campaign called "Media Malpractice: How Obama Got Elected and Palin Was Targeted."

Filed under: David Letterman • Sarah Palin
soundoff (98 Responses)
  1. labman57

    If you don't care for Letterman or found his jokes about the Palins offensive, that's your right. If you felt his explanation was disingenuous, fine. Don't watch his show.

    But the notion that CBS would or should entertain the thought of pulling the plug on his show, or even reprimand him or his writers, is delusional. The idea that anyone who still enjoys watching Letterman must hate all women is a bunch of self-serving hyperbole.

    June 16, 2009 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  2. anderson n carolina

    A protest without protesters! The media following a non-story all week. This is too funny.

    June 16, 2009 11:31 pm at 11:31 pm |
  3. Chris

    As usual, Sarah Palin's supporters think they have more support than they actually do.

    Why am I not surprised..

    June 16, 2009 11:32 pm at 11:32 pm |
  4. Tim

    "Ziegler made a film about the 2008 presidential campaign called 'Media Malpractice: How Obama Got Elected and Palin Was Targeted.'"

    This guy should read about Occam's Razor...instead of thinking that the election was an outright conspiracy, how about the simple truth....America liked the other guy more. No conspiracies please.

    June 16, 2009 11:32 pm at 11:32 pm |
  5. Martin

    No one came because no one takes it seriously. It was a bad joke, she called him on it, he apologized. End of story. How many so-called comedians are there that have said way worse and NOT apologized? Too many to count.

    Her and her camp need to stop trying to milk Letterman's mistake. It's not like she's the first politician have jokes bounced off of her, and she won't be the last.

    June 16, 2009 11:39 pm at 11:39 pm |
  6. nadine

    What's a John Ziegler oh yeah a guy trying to get into Palins pants. Deal with it Ziegler, David Letterman Rocks, you and Palin suck. We win. Go home loser.

    June 16, 2009 11:40 pm at 11:40 pm |
  7. Cez

    This ridiculous! He's a comedianne!! It's a joke!! Move on people...Palin says worst stuff before. Ridiculous...

    June 16, 2009 11:41 pm at 11:41 pm |
  8. david

    Palin and her supporters are jokes

    June 16, 2009 11:42 pm at 11:42 pm |
  9. Matt

    looks like David won

    June 16, 2009 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
  10. bill sandwick

    I think Ziegler is more interested in self promotion. Clever boy,John!

    June 16, 2009 11:46 pm at 11:46 pm |
  11. E Joyce

    Sigh. The media conspiracy theory and strategy has no weight, but it is how the Republican party and the right biased radio and TV personalities justify their poor behavior. This strategy of blame by the party of NO is tired.

    June 16, 2009 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  12. Bob

    It is the fans who love david letterman. john ziegler fire yourself. david letterman is a funny man.

    June 16, 2009 11:48 pm at 11:48 pm |
  13. Paul

    And the number one sign your protest will fail...

    1. It relies on people who aren't disgusted by Sarah Palin.

    June 16, 2009 11:52 pm at 11:52 pm |
  14. Will, NJ

    Don't these people have anything better to do than protest a comedian for telling jokes?

    June 16, 2009 11:53 pm at 11:53 pm |
  15. Bill

    15 protesters? Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!

    June 16, 2009 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  16. Jason T.

    Why is this woman still relevant? Seriously, what good has she done?

    Also, don't these people have better things to do? I mean, if you're going to protest something, protest something that could actually make a difference. Gotta love how some people will push free speech when someone on their side says something off-kilter (failure to America, anyone?), but when the opposing side says something, everyone's up in arms and they should lose their job for it. This can be said for hardcore conservatives as well as liberals.

    Either way, it was a harmless joke. No political motivation or anything. It's the Palins' fault for not teaching their kids about safe sex and effectively making them a punching bag for comics.

    June 16, 2009 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  17. Andrew J

    Mr. Ziegler is a nut and crazy man. This phony outrage is unbelievable.

    June 16, 2009 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  18. Steve

    Ziegler must be in luv wit Sarah Palin, Letterman apologized, Sarah accepted, what honour is fighting 4, we know where his loyalties lies, but that sh'dnt stop any1 else 4rm havin a laugh at Sarah's shortcomings

    June 16, 2009 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  19. Margo Simms

    I agree with Zimmy. Will Palin and all her white trash kids please leave the stage. I am a conservative repub an I can't stand to watch any of them. She has exploited her kids way more than Dave ever could.

    June 16, 2009 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  20. tedious898

    Is this the biggest problem we have in this country? Where are the tea bags when you need them?

    June 16, 2009 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  21. Tom McCarey

    And you're surprised? And how many were paid to "protest"?

    June 17, 2009 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  22. Betsy Ross

    Palin exploits her daughter - Ziegler exploits Palin ... they deserve each other.

    June 17, 2009 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  23. ptbal

    Ziegler is Palin's very own stalker.

    June 17, 2009 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  24. kevin

    Stop grand standing Ziegler, your 15 minutes of fame is over!

    June 17, 2009 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
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