Gilbert Gottfried has offered his apology for making jokes about the earthquake and tsunami disaster in Japan. The comedian returned to Twitter to express his regret over the mocking tweets on Tuesday, March 15, just a day after he was fired from his longtime role as voice of Aflac Inc.'s duck mascot.
The 56-year-old who gave voice to the parrot Iago in Disney's "Aladdin" first tweeted, "I sincerely apologize to anyone who was offended by my attempt at humor regarding the tragedy in Japan." He was quick to follow it up with further statement in a second tweet that read, "I meant no disrespect, and my thoughts are with the victims and their families."
On Monday, March 14, Aflac announced they have severed ties with Gilbert after he posted offensive tweets about the Japan disaster. "Gilbert's recent comments about the crisis in Japan were lacking in humor and certainly do not represent the thoughts and feelings of anyone at Aflac," the company explained. "There is no place for anything but compassion and concern during these difficult times."
Coming to Gilbert's defense, however, was TV personality Joan Rivers. The 77-year-old tweeted, "Oh come on people - this is just outrageous! Gilbert Gottfried was FIRED from Aflac for making jokes about the tsunami in Japan." She added, "That's what comedians do!!! We react to tragedy by making jokes to help people in tough times feel better through laughter."
Radio personality Howard Stern also offered his support to Gilbert. When speaking on his SiriusXM radio show Tuesday, he stated, "Here's a guy that, as long as I know him, has been making jokes about the N-word, about Jews. I mean, you couldn't ask for a more inappropriate person than Gilbert Gottfried."