Everybody could benefit from some mentoring, even Alec Baldwin.
After his most recent tirade (against a photographer this time, not his daughter or a flight attendant or a paparazzo), during which he used a nasty, homophobic slur, Baldwin’s MSNBC show got cancelled. This was kind of expected in TV circles, and there wasn’t really any fuss. ‘Cause he deserved it.
The entertainment industry is pretty free-wheeling in a lot of ways, but network TV is still rather puritanical when it comes to language; it’s fairly well understood that, as a television personality, there are some words you just can’t use. As arguably arbitrary the division between appropriate and inappropriate language may be, there are rules, and Alec broke them. He obviously can’t be trusted to live life without a script. He’s a liability. He’s a loose cannon. He’s not worth the trouble.
But really, Baldwin should take a lesson from another notoriously outspoken and combative TV personality: Donald Trump. Dude says a lot of awful things. He gets into battles that rage on for months. He makes character assassination attempts, calls names, bullies and badgers and hounds his enemies like a dog that grabs hold of a bone and just won’t let go. Yes, Trump is notorious for his big, mean mouth, but he’s never lost a job over it. He’s called people ugly, fat, disgusting, a failure, a disaster, and a loser (and that was just Rosie O’Donnell!). He’s called them that on TV, for an audience of many millions. But unlike Baldwin, Trump understands the rules. He never said one of the forbidden words. And so he kept his job.
So, Baldwin — if you’re going to be a loud mouth, at least take a lesson from the bullying handbook of Donald Trump. You can be rude and hateful all you want and still keep you job; just don’t say those verboten words, you bonehead! (Oh, and by the way? Your show was really boring.)