Boston Herald

Fox News Anchor Apologizes for Comment About Death of Robin Williams

Aug 12, 2014  •  Post A Comment

A comment made by a Fox News Channel anchor in the hours after news broke Monday of the death of Robin Williams has prompted an apology.

The Boston Herald reports that the anchor, Shepard Smith, sparked an outcry on social media when he used the word “coward” to talk about Williams’ apparent suicide. Smith later told TVNewser:

“The last thing I would ever suggest about a man I know nothing about personally, is that he’s a coward. That goes against everything I am. If those words, I used so innocently, offended his family, from the bottom of my heart, I could not be more sorry.”

The Herald gives an account of Smith’s original telecast, saying: “Near the end of the live show, Smith read a quote from Williams about how the actor’s three children ‘gave him a great sense of wonder.’

“Smith then followed the quote by saying, ‘And yet, something inside you is so horrible or you’re such a coward or whatever the reason that you decide that you have to end it.’”

As we are reporting separately, authorities today indicated that Williams, 63, died of asphyxia due to hanging.

The Herald report adds: “Other media outlets have taken heat on social media for their coverage on the comedian’s death. Earlier Tuesday morning ABC News issued an apology for streaming video of Robin Williams’ home on Monday.”

shepard smith

Shepard Smith

6 Comments

  1. It is this kind of ignorant prejudice that fuels the stigma of mental illness. The stigma, the shame can and does make people avoid psychiatric help. Using drugs and alcohol is a way of self medicating to stop the pain. It is more socially acceptable for people to go into Rehab rather than get psychological help for the real underlying biological problem of mental illness. This moron’s comment unveils the belief that mental illness reflects weakness and not enough willpower. This is the residue of the Puritan Ethic in the States and mirrored by many religions. We desperately need public education to beat this toxic stigma or we will lose more wonderful souls like Robin.

  2. Odd that a closeted 50 year old gay man who works for Fox News would refer to anyone but himself as a coward!

  3. Smith is an insensitive, idiotic jerk (which is the job profile for a Fox “News” commentator. Abject apologies after the fact are meaningless.

  4. None of us know the pain and horror that Robin Williams had to live with. For anyone to be stupid enough to say something like that is just unbelievable. I hope Shepard Smith is proud of himself.

  5. I think it is time Fox News shows this jerk the door. Sorry, guy, but you’re out of here!
    This isn’t the first time you have shot your mouth off arrogantly!

  6. Right,
    iNobody from his family is hurt by this selfish act

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