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Gilbert Gottfried apologizes

Posted by Steve Greenlee  March 15, 2011 02:00 PM

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AFLAC Fires Gottfried.jpgA day after Aflac fired him for posting tasteless jokes about Japan's earthquake and tsunami on Twitter, comedian Gilbert Gottfried issued this lame statement: "I sincerely apologize to anyone who was offended by my attempt at humor regarding the tragedy in Japan. I meant no disrespect, and my thoughts are with the victims and their families." (You'll notice that he didn't actually apologize for the jokes or concede that they were offensive; rather, he apologized to anyone who found them offensive.)

Gottfried had served as the voice of the insurance company's duck on its TV commercials until yesterday, when Aflac swiftly booted him for the mocking jokes he posted to Twitter over the weekend. "There is no place for anything but compassion and concern during these difficult times," said Aflac's chief marketing officer, Michael Zuna. Aflac also said it would donate $1.2 million to the International Red Cross to help with disaster assistance, according to the Associated Press.

Aflac does 75 percent of its business in Japan, where a quarter of the residents buy health insurance from Aflac. Gottfried voiced the duck only in the United States.

(AP photo of Gilbert Gottfried with the Aflac duck.)

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