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Lighten up, it was just a &*!#$%@ mistake

September 18, 2009 - Per Peterson
I’m not big on swearing (although I’ve very … very good at it), but I think FOX and the Federal Communications Commission needs to lighten up when it comes to on-air profanity slips. The FCC can crack down all they want when someone blatantly swears during a live production, but you wonder what it will do in response to a veteran New York City news anchor’s on-air flub Wednesday. Ernie Anastos of Fox affiliate WNYW was bantering with the station’s weatherman Wednesday night when he dropped an F-bomb on the air. What he likely intended to say was, ‘‘Keep plucking that chicken.’’ Anastos didn’t appear to recognize the error, though co-anchor Dari Alexander’s eyes bugged out after he said it. Just before the flub, Anastos told weatherman Nick Gregory, ‘‘It takes a tough man to make a tender forecast,’’ a play on an old chicken commercial. Videos of the mistake circulated all over online Thursday, and everyone got a kick out of it. FOX isn’t laughing like the rest of us, however. The vice president and general manager of WNYW, Lew Leone, said he’s ‘‘disappointed’’ in Anastos’ comment. Disappointed? It was a mistake. If Anastos were to have went off on a profanity-laced tirade or even just swore purposely because he was having a bad day or something, I could see the network getting all up in arms. But it was a mistake, a goof, a blooper that won’t make the blooper reel because of its nature. The FCC surely will have something to say about the incident and Anastos will probably be fined or suspended without pay, but if you’re fragile enough to get offended by an F-bomb dropped by mistake, then I got a few words for you. I just can’t write them.


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