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Allen’s Lame Apology Won’t End the Story

October 11, 2011
By

WDRB's Lindsay Allen made an apology, sort of, on the air today.

Today Lindsay Allen of WDRB-TV offered an apology, sort of, for her comments yesterday on the air about Tiger Woods and the use of the N-word:

“Yesterday a viewer contacted us over a comment I made during this newscast. I want to assure everyone that the comments I made were misunderstood. I apologize if any of our viewers were offended.”

As apologies go, this one is pretty weak. First of all, she blamed the viewer who brought the comment to the station’s attention, rather than actually apologizing for what she said.

The statement also is a denial that she uttered the phrase. In the last 24 hours, I’ve talked to several media experts and not one has watched the tape and concluded anything other than what we all heard come out of her mouth.

It’s always better to admit a mistake rather than denying it ever happened, especially when there’s video evidence.

Then, apologizing only to viewers who were offended is a classic way of saying “I didn’t do anything wrong, actually, but I’m being forced to publcly apologize.”

Actually, here’s what a dose of truth serum might have prompted: “Yesterday I said the N-word during the broadcast while trying to be hip in an exchange with Sterling. I’m not racist, and I know that the word is offensive to African-Americans. It was a huge mistake, and I apologize to everyone in the WDRB audience who heard it. And I especially apologize to Anthony Fresh, who brought the comment to the station’s attention.”

There’s no doubt Allen’s apology was written and edited by station management, which seems to simply want the controversy to go away. I doubt it will.

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Rick Redding

Rick is the entrepreneur behind LouisvilleKy.com. He’s been a world-famous blogger since thinking up The ‘Ville Voice back in 2006. Before leaving that start-up in 2009, he was voted the city’s best blogger by Louisville Magazine. LEO Readers voted his site the best independent news site in the city. In 2009 he organized a news operation at LouisvilleMojo and headed up the Local Voices blog team at WLKY.com in 2010. A long time ago, he was a beat reporter at Business First, launched business news operations in the Kiosk and Pizza industries, and wrote a media column at LEO. He’s a Louisville native and a graduate of WKU.

36 Responses to Allen’s Lame Apology Won’t End the Story

  1. Joe on October 11, 2011 at 9:22 am

    I think you should at least consider the possibility that she’s being sincere with the apology. I don’t watch much local tv, so honestly had never even heard of this woman before this story popped up yesterday, but I’ve listened to the video several times and it sounds crystal clear to me that she’s saying, with a bit of a stumble, “at least…”, exactly as she claimed. I can hear how someone would think it was “nigga”, but honestly I wouldn’t have even had the thought if it hadn’t been suggested.

  2. DB on October 11, 2011 at 9:52 am

    I hope Lindsay’s career isn’t ruined over this garbage. She’s a great addition to WDRB.

  3. steve on October 11, 2011 at 10:15 am

    She did not say the N word: she said, “At least he can blame the hot dog.”

    She chews the words, but that’s what she said.

    I know this lady: sweet as can be and NEVER uses such language.

    • The O.G. D.B. on October 11, 2011 at 5:55 pm

      She may be sweet but she said what she said.

  4. Andrew on October 11, 2011 at 10:27 am

    yeah, didnt sound like the N word to me. sounds like she mumbled a bit and was trying to say “at least”. which actually makes sense instead of ‘trying to be hip’ and use the other word.

    she shouldnt have to apologize at all. just accept that she was misunderstood. happens all the time.

  5. Tory on October 11, 2011 at 10:38 am

    REALLY- she didn’t say the N word? Just have the slur analyzed by a professional and I believe you will have the answer to this little riddle. Come on. Lets get honest here. If she had said kike, spick, wetback or any other hateful word the station would have called her out on it. Why the tolerance to this?

  6. Troy on October 11, 2011 at 10:41 am

    Using a bad second-hand recording to listen for it can certainly help someone hear something that isn’t there.

    As others have pointed out, she did not say what you insist she said, but did jumble words that led to it not being clear.

    I suggest you be very careful with your insistence on what you now state as fact.

    It’s good you seem to be an expert on apologies, as you’re going to need to be before this is all said & done.

    Based on other things I’ve read of yours, and the manner in which you conduct yourself always pointing a finger & mocking others, I have a ‘n’ word for you:
    nitwit. And I DID say that.

  7. Scott on October 11, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    “Allen’s Lame Apology Won’t End the Story”

    Why won’t it end? Because you won’t let it? Forgive me Rick, I didn’t know you had turned into Louisville’s new civil rights leader. If you really want to fight racism in the city you can concentrate your efforts in better places. There are real race problems in Louisville and this ain’t one of them. But by all means, ruin this person’s career over a barely coherent sentence. I’m sure that’ll really make a difference.

    • The O.G. D.B. on October 11, 2011 at 5:56 pm

      Why chastise Mr. Redding because a local anchor can’t speak clearly enough to keep herself out of the hot seat?

      • Scott on October 12, 2011 at 7:53 am

        Oh, I don’t know. Maybe because he’s making a mountain out of a mole-hill. Maybe because he’s ready to burn this person at the stake when no one is completely sure what she said or meant to say. Or, maybe because I hate useless bloggers that like get on their high horse and judge. But I’m really just mad at all the fake outrage amongst the “concerned citizens” on here that think they’re fighting racism so they can go back to not caring about the real problems in the African-American community tomorrow.

  8. Larry on October 11, 2011 at 1:44 pm

    Ok, let’s get real here.

    I’m willing to bet every penny I own that Lindsay Allen did not say:
    “This nigga blamed the hot dog on some of his poor performance.”

    If you want to take me up on this bet then don’t read any further and contact me immediately so we can arrange to make a legal wager. Otherwise, read on, and you’ll see why I’m technically correct.

    1. The second word sounds like it ends in the letter N.
    2. She says the word “then” in the middle of the phrase.
    3. She does not say the word “some” — it sounds more like “one”, thus instead of “some of his…” it’s more like “one of his…”.
    3. She says “performances” (plural) not “performance”.
    4. She says “lately, maybe?” at the end of the phrase after “performances”.
    5. The tone and inflection don’t indicate a single statement of fact, but more of a if-then-question.
    6. Whatever she said came out jumbled and does not make total sense.

    I’m not exactly sure what she said, but it’s something along the lines of: “_____ ____n he can blame the hotdog, then one of his poor performances lately, maybe?”

    Some have said that Lindsay started the phrase with “At least…”. However, if you consider the rhetoric that occurred before her statement then I think you’ll draw a different conclusion, as did I.

    The previous comments went something like this:
    1. Sterling Riggs says “Gonna have to throw it out there… “C’mon man!” He appears to be saying “Come on man” in a mock Southern Redneck, or African American, slang version that sounds more like “c’moan main”.
    2. Lindsay Allen then repeats “Come on man!” Except her version sounds more like “Come on man!”

    Based on this mock Southern Redneck, or African American, slang dialogue going on between Sterling and Lindsay, and the numbered statements above, and I am inclined to believe that Lindsay said something more like this: “Unless’n he can blame the hotdog, then one of his poor performances lately.” It’s still goofy, and not a grammatically correct statement, but I don’t think newscasters should be forced to apologize for making goofy statements, or the networks would have to shut down.

    Assuming that she did say “Unless’n” then should she apologize? After all, nearly the entire viewing audience in “these here parts” was mocked by newscasters if that’s the case. In fact, Sterling is also guilty, because he said “C’moan main!” Moreover, no one at Fox mentioned Sterling’s slip up, so should the entire Louisville Fox station issue an apology to anyone who natively talks with a Southern Redneck or African American slang voice?

    Maybe the entire Fox network should issue an apology!

    Either that, or maybe everyone should grow up and stop going around with a chip on their shoulder—waiting for someone on a publicly aired network and in the supposedly “neutral media” to slip up and say anything that remotely resembles a slur or insult to a particular race or ethnic culture. After all, we give a free pass to rappers and comedians and anyone of ethnicity (e.g. Charles Barkley) to say anything they want without having to apologize, so why do we get so bent out of shape when a female, Caucasian newscaster jumbles her words?

    It doesn’t make sense to me.

    Lessons learned:

    • Lindsay: stick to the prompter, be very careful when you ad lib, and please DO NOT give in and apologize for something you did not say.

    • Rick: don’t be so quick to jump on Lindsay (whoops, that doesn’t sound right!). Please don’t be so quick to judge anyone until you’ve closely analyzed the facts surrounding an issue.

    • Anthony: go back to class and don’t let this battle define you. I’m pretty sure Lindsay Allen doesn’t secretly belong to a white supremacist group or attempt to subliminally inject racial slurs into her newscast. It’s very clear she just jumbled her words.

    • The O.G. D.B. on October 11, 2011 at 5:57 pm

      Thank you Mr. Lamb

    • Can't Believe Some People Are So Stupid on October 12, 2011 at 1:32 pm

      What it clearly sounds like to me is, “This (stumble) – he can blame the hot dog on some of his poor performances lately”. And it was in reference to the fact that he substituted a hot dog at the turn for his usual banana during the latest tournament. Some of you people are just unbelievable.

  9. The O.G. D.B. on October 11, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    However the Lamb Machine wishes to spin this, it is very evident to anyone with eardrums what was said. It is a common expression among those who use that kind of language and apparently this young woman is among those chosen few. What is most disturbing is that WDRB is not only denying responsibility but trying to steer any criticism away from this debacle. Are you telling me this is not even worth a public reprimand? The woman speaks for a living and if she has no more control over her vocabulary than this, she should not be broadcasting. Every anchor has had a blurp on the air but this is different and Barry Fulmer is a no nonsense kind of guy when it comes to his on-air product. It would be baffling if it weren’t for the presence of Bill Lamb. Knowing the man and the way he operates and the disdain he has for Mr. Redding, it would not surprise me a bit if Bill had a few of his cronies type the responses posted thus far. But that’s just my point of view.

  10. Donnie B on October 11, 2011 at 5:45 pm

    It doesn’t even sound like a racial slur. It sounds like a stumble over the words “Listen, he…”
    The only thing Lindsay needs to apologize for is how the viewer is mistaken.

  11. Dennis on October 11, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    Rick…your commentary is so biased and one sided that you appear to have a vendetta against Lindsay, Channel 41, or maybe your are just trying to build a rep on a controversy that should not exist. I have replayed Lindsay’s comment about Tiger many, many times, and the only…the ONLY way you get the “N” word out of what she said is if that is what you were waiting for or wanting to hear. Lindsay is a sharp, professional young woman, and based on my exposure to her, I DO NOT believe that word is in her vocabulary…now or ever. You need to BACK away from this one and find something positive to build your rep on!

  12. Can't Believe My Vulcan Ears on October 11, 2011 at 6:25 pm

    Dennis…either you are a friend of Allen, an employee of WDRB or this Bill Lamb guy.It is very clear if you listen only once what she said. If you really do not, make a doctor’s appointment and get your hearing checked.

    • Can't Believe Some People Are So Stupid on October 12, 2011 at 1:37 pm

      I’m not Dennis nor do I know Allen nor do I even watch WDRB, but it took me 3 listens to even come close to knowing what all of this fuss is about. Then on the 4th listen, it was evident that she stumbled on words. Which, for those of you that don’t know what that means, is where she started to say one sentence and then said another sentence instead. Closely listening with an open mind instead of having your mind made up that a slur was used and looking at her lips allows you to hear her say something along the lines of, “This – he can blame the hot dog on his poor performances lately”

  13. Jason on October 11, 2011 at 6:46 pm

    People…are you serious? Listen back to the video…it says “This, he can blame the hot dog”…. she says the words so fast, but listen to it..she didn’t say the word that people are saying she said.

    I usually enjoy reading Rick Redding’s stories, but this is sad. You are going on a rant saying she said something that she really didn’t. I just listened to the video over and over. If you are trying to hear the “n” word, you might hear something close..but if you listen (and I mean actually listen without pointing fingers) you hear her say “This, he can blame the hot dog”.

    If this had been Mr. Redding’s “media darling”, WHAS’s Claudia Coffey, that he regularly writes about, then he would have taken her side and let people know she jumbled her words, or that she was the victim in this case and was wrongfully accused. He would have written that she is a great woman, and a mother, and would never say this. However, you throw in a young woman like Lindsay who also has a good reputation, and you decide she said something that she has clearly said she didn’t, and you go on attacking her and telling her she’s trying to be “hip”.

    Mr. Redding, I watch WDRB in the Morning because the people are so genuine. This girl is a great addition, and you can tell is a sincere person. Sit down with her for 5 minutes and I think you would see, she probably is being honest when she says she never used that word.

    Instead, you will continue to try to ruin a young woman’s career, and I find that to be very sad. Mr. Redding…you’re attacking this young woman as if she is Judy Green. Listen to the tape again and see if the statement “This, he can blame the hot dog” fits …you will see it does. I would then like to see you offer Ms. Allen an apology. Until then, you just lost a reader.

  14. redding is wrong on October 11, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    In your bio you call yourself “the big cheese” and a “world famous blogger”…I’m glad you think so highly of yourself. I however think you are a joke and should be ashamed of yourself. As a blogger all you’re doing is trying to get a rise out of people. Congratulations! You’ve done that, and while doing it ruined a perfectly innocent and professional woman’s name.
    I hope your name shows up on a lawsuit.
    You certainly owe this woman and her station an apology.
    As Oklahoma State football coach Mike Gundy once said to a “reporter” who got their facts wrong, “you make me want to puke.”

  15. Viewer on October 11, 2011 at 7:56 pm

    Rick, seriously, this is low even by your own lack of standards. To attempt to smear someone’s reputation for, what, a few dozen more hits on your blog? What she said was unclear…but the odds of it being a racial slur on the air are pretty slim.

  16. Gina G on October 11, 2011 at 9:38 pm

    I have listened to this blurb at least 7 times and yes, it is grammatically goofy and jumbled, but certainly not racist. She did not say anything close to a racial slur. This is ridiculous. Rick, I respect your writing and blog, but I feel you are way off on this one.

  17. Jason on October 11, 2011 at 9:40 pm

    And…this is why you should never again be voted “Best website” or “best local blog” or whatever title you begged for. You called this girl out saying she used a slur and was weak in her apology. Mr. Redding, take a look at this video. It’s VERY clear you owe this girl an apology. Here’s the story WDRB just posted with the actual video (not a second-hand tape). It’s so clear that she doesn’t use the word, and clear that you tried to make people think otherwise.

    http://www.wdrb.com/story/15669857/lindsay-allen-speaks-out-on-accusations-against-her

  18. DB on October 12, 2011 at 4:55 am

    I wouldn’t mind seeing Lindsay or WDRB bring some charges against the people saying this garbage.

  19. roger davidson on October 12, 2011 at 11:09 am

    we all make mistakes, however, this crosses the line…i think the staion should do the right thing…hopefully she will learn a valuable lession…and perhaps another station will give her a second chance…this a ongoing problem with alot of these new young so-called journalists.

    • Can't Believe Some People Are So Stupid on October 12, 2011 at 1:51 pm

      The last I checked, her current station said they stand behind her 100%. She hasn’t been fired, so there’s no need for another station to give her a second chance. The only valuable lesson she’s probably learning is how some people will do anything to get attention, including putting words in someone’s mouth.

  20. Can't Believe Some People Are So Stupid on October 12, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    I agree with DB. It is clearly not the N word on that video. Those that want to call federal agencies and conduct protests should be sued for slander. Then see how they like it.

  21. Savannah Bob on October 12, 2011 at 9:29 pm

    I think it’s wonderful that Lindsay has so many close friends willing to stand behind her and tell the rest of the world it didn’t hear what it knows it heard clearly. I predict that both Lindsay and her News Director will be gone within a month– not because of what she said, but because they didn’t tell the truth about it.

  22. rayjo on October 13, 2011 at 8:22 am

    The boy clearly has an attention disorder. Anyone who pronounces words correctly and is an attentive listener can understand that she said nothing wrong.Is this what YOU call news! By the way, I will most likely be called a racist for calling the young man a boy.

  23. rayjo on October 13, 2011 at 8:25 am

    The only thing lame about this so called news story is the person who wrote!

  24. rayjo on October 13, 2011 at 8:31 am

    Savannah BOB, I predict she will still have a job although you probably dont. Thanks to our ignorant president that you Im sure voted for!

  25. Laura on October 13, 2011 at 10:44 am

    I cannot believe that anyone who listened to the audio thought she said anything remotely racist. She didn’t say it, therefore no need to apologize for not saying it, therefore her comments on it were not lame.

    But you are Rick. I guess I am the last to know.

  26. Laura on October 13, 2011 at 10:47 am

    Uh rayjo- WTF does the president have to do with this?

  27. rayjo on October 13, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    No one said he had anything to do with the comment. WTF pay attention!

  28. James on October 14, 2011 at 9:19 am

    You know the plain and simple fact here is that this poor woman’s name is being smeared because someone THINKS they heard a racial comment, the unfortunate part is that regardless of if it was proven or not she still has to succomb to the retterric of idiots like the one writing this story. Black people in this day and age ANTICIPATE racist behavior because they assume that some part of EVERY white person is racist, which is by far the STUPIDIEST way of thinking known to man. Anthony Fresh heard what he wanted to hear and decided to take it apon himself to start a burn Lindsay Allen crusade using race a fuel to the fire. And people like Rick what’s his face who has made their mind up about the situation have decided to take it to the boards and bash this woman for what is obviously a flubbed statement. People hear what they want to hear, people write garbage for the sake of attention and orginizations like the NAACP foam at the mouth at an opportunity to publicly scrutinize a racist white person, some of whom obviously aren’t racist.

  29. DB on October 14, 2011 at 9:21 am

    Well put James!

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