LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kathy Griffin retracted her apology for a gory image of a fake Donald Trump head, saying anger against her was overblown and should be directed at Trump and his administration.
A feisty Griffin, interviewed Tuesday on Australian TV in advance of an international comedy tour, slammed the president and his actions as she reversed course from her tearful mea culpa in May.
“So the picture happened, the outrage was ridiculous, I made an apology, and now in light of all the crazy stuff that he (Trump) and this administration are doing….. He’s unhinged,” she said on the morning show “Sunrise.”
The comedian condemned Trump’s pardon of former Arizona lawman Joe Arpaio and the president’s call for a ban on military service by transgender people. She also referred to Trump as a “fool,” among other derogatory terms.
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One “Sunrise” host pressed her on whether it was out of line to pose for photos and a video with a mask of Trump covered in tomato sauce to simulate blood from a severed head. Griffin pushed back.
“Stop acting like my little picture is more important than talking about the actual atrocities that the president of the United States is committing,” she said.
Griffin said she lost friends and work, and received death threats during the uproar.
She had quickly apologized in a video in which she called the Trump image “disturbing” and also during a tearful news conference, but was fired from her most high-profile job as co-host of CNN’s New Year’s Eve Celebration. Comedy gigs were canceled.
It didn’t take long for her to realize that what was happening to her could be the basis of laughs, Griffin said during a satellite interview, and she decided to embark on the “Laugh Your Head Off” tour.
She’s also on “a mission to tell people, honestly, if it happened to me, as big mouthed and obnoxious as I am, it can happen to you,” said Griffin.
Griffin spoke this week by satellite to “Sunrise” and another Australian show, “The Project,” to promote her upcoming appearances there. She’ll also be on stage in Europe and elsewhere.