Many viewers were tastelessly insulted and defamed by host Billy Crystal's remark that because an Italian company now owns MGM/UA, Leo the Lion will no longer roar but rather will take the Fifth Amendment.
Nobody on the air or off took him to task for his bigotry and rudeness. Not the academy. Not ABC. No presenters or winners.
Hollywood does not realize that bigotry leads to intolerance, which leads to hate crimes. By giving the youth of America Billy Crystal and Andy Rooney, does the TV/movie industry really think hate crimes will come down? There are those who say we don't need censorship. Yet the loudest objection to such restraints come from an industry that has lost its moral anchor.
Thirty-six members of the U.S. House of Representatives have sent a letter to the academy demanding that Crystal apologize . At press time, there had been no announcement of any response from the comedian.