A comedian who drew criticism for a Pearl Harbor joke she told on NBC’s “New Year’s Eve with Carson Daly” is standing behind the joke. The Hollywood Reporter’s Live Feed reports that Natasha Leggero responded to the criticism by writing a letter in which she declares, “I’m not sorry."
The controversy started when Daly was talking with Leggero, Jane Lynch and Anthony Anderson about a tweet that SpaghettiOs posted on the anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack. Some people were offended by the tweet, as it showed the food’s mascot holding an American flag, an image that was criticized as exploitive.
Leggero cracked, “I mean, it sucks that the only survivors of Pearl Harbor are being mocked by the only food they can still chew."
Veterans and others criticized her comment in the days afterward.
In an open letter posted on Tumblr, Leggero wrote, “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.”
The letter adds: "On the one hand you have me, making a joke about how old people can’t chew tough foods very well. 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 cunt or doing something about the above problems?"
The letter suggests that readers make a donation to the Disabled American Veterans foundation, and provides a link to the organization’s website.