The Amazing Race has been a staple of many of my evenings for more than a decade. In fact, it’s been the staple of about 10 million viewers every season since 2001. As one of the most popular reality shows in history, it has amassed thirteen Primetime Emmy Awards, including every award from 2003 to 2012 for “Outstanding Reality-Competition Program” (except in 2010 when Top Chef won). I love the show so much, my wife and I even created a charitable event based on the show called the Kiwanis Great Race. As a great non-political and fun family show, it had me scratching my head last week when it took a decisively anti-American U-Turn.
Greg Gutfeld, the Libertarian host of Fox News’ The Five, explains the controversy best…
It’s almost unthinkable that the show’s producers — as well as the network executives — would believe a segment glorifying socialism in song, dance and propaganda as part of one of the show’s challenges was acceptable; but to make the twisted metal of the downed American B-52 where two American soldiers died and another two were taken as POWs the site of U-Turn on the race was unconscionable. The only word that can be used to describe the episode is anti-American.
Interestingly enough, it was the only Democrat host on The Five to make this issue his personal pet project. Each day on the show Bob Beckel would air his outrage that neither CBS or the producers of The Amazing Race had written an apology. It was an issue that transcended party politics.
Then, on Thursday Vietnam War veteran and American Legion National Commander James Koutz sent a letter to CBS, asking that the network apologize for “its disgraceful slap-in-the face administered to American war heroes.”
Perhaps it was the fact that Fox News wasn’t going to let up, or that there was a growing outrage amongst America’s veterans, but whatever it was, CBS and The Amazing Race finally issued a formal apology on their Facebook page and during last night’s episode of show.
After the apology was issued, Bob Beckel Tweeted, “Thank you to everyone who put n CBS. We got the apology more importantly we got together as Americans for the right reason. Go vets.”
And James Koutz stated, “America is a forgiving country. When you make a mistake, you own up to it. The American Legion applauds CBS and ‘The Amazing Race’ for its apology.”
Clearly, the Beckel-Koutz duo won this leg of the race.
The bottom line is that the mea culpa was the right thing to do. The Amazing Race turned what could have been a hazardous road block into just a simple speed bump. Otherwise known as the best U-Turn of the season.
@RobertGBeckel, @CBS, #AmazingRace, #CBSApologize
An Amazing Apology