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Wednesday, August 28, 2019

News Anchor Says Her Black Colleague Looks Like a Gorilla on Live TV

Alex Housdon, white news anchor who called her colleague an ape

Oklahoma, OK — Alex Housden, a white news anchor in Oklahoma City, is under fire after she made a racist comment to her Black colleague, Jason Hackett, as she compared him to a gorilla while he was reporting on a live newscast.

Last week, Housden and Hackett, who were anchors at KOCO 5 News, were covering a story about Fin, a gorilla at the Oklahoma City Zoo that recently went viral on Instagram after its caretaker took over their account.

Housden was talking about the story and said, “Now as you can see, Fin was fascinated by the camera.”

Hackett fondly replied, “You can tell that he was ready for his close-up.”

But then, Housden suddenly said, “[He] kinda looks like you.”

Viewers immediately called her out for her comment that many have said was racist. Lecorie Moaning posted the clip on Facebook shortly after the live broadcast.

“Okay so Alex Housden compared Jason Hackett to a gorilla on live tv this morning unbelievable,” Moaning wrote in her post. It has since been viewed over 20,000 times with many expressing shock and anger at Housden’s comment.

A day after the incident, Housden made a televised apology to Hackett while crying.

“I’m here this morning because I wanna apologize not only to my co-anchor, Jason, but to our entire community,” Housden said through tears. “I said something yesterday that was inconsiderate, it was inappropriate and I hurt people. And I want you to know, I understand how much I hurt you out there.”

“I would never do anything on purpose to hurt you,” Housden continued and called him one of her bestfriends. “And I love our community. And I want you all to know from the bottom of my heart, I apologize for what I said. I know it was wrong and I am so sorry.”

Hackett, who had a straight face while she was talking, said he accepts her apology, but added that he hopes the incident teaches a lesson.

“What she said yesterday was wrong. It cut deep for me and it cut deep for a lot of you in the community. I want this to be a teachable moment [and] the lesson here is that words matter. The demographics are changing and there’s no excuse. We have to understand the stereotypes. We have to understand each other’s backgrounds. We have to find a way to replace those words with love and affirmation. As broadcasters, words are the tools of our trade. What we need to do is use those words not to hurt and not to divide, but to build a more perfect union.”

However, many did not buy her apology and wanted her fired from her job at KOCO 5.

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