The View found itself in hot water after Joy Behar made controversial comments about nurses on-air earlier this week, and the American Nurses Association has spoken up – and the comedian has apologized.
“Each and every day, the nation s 3.4 million registered nurses provide expert, high-quality and compassionate care, as well as dedicated leadership from the bedside to the boardroom,” reads a Wednesday statement from ANA President Pamela F. Cipriano. “We are the frontline caregivers, 24 hours, 7 days a week, who are with individuals from birth, throughout their lifespan and at the end of life. That’s why it was disturbing when Joy Behar used her national platform and influence to mock Miss America contestant Kelley Johnson for wearing a ‘doctor’s stethoscope’ while performing a dramatic monologue about her experience as a registered nurse during the pageant’s talent competition, as if Johnson were wearing a costume.”
“Nurses don’t wear costumes, they save lives,” continues the statement, explaining that nurses use stethoscopes and other tools to coordinate care with physicians.
“We are pleased that Behar apologized on the show this morning, and think this is a great opportunity for those in the media to highlight the important, lifesaving role of nurses and to show them the respect they deserve,” Cipriano concluded.
“If @TheView issues an apology tomorrow can you let me know? I have to work, & it airs around the time I’m usually using my stethoscope,” the reality star, who works as a nurse, tweeted Tuesday, before Behar addressed the controversy Wednesday.
Behar questioned why Johnson would wear a stethoscope during a discussion with co-host Michelle Collins on Monday’s episode of the show.
After facing serious backlash on social media for the comments, including the creation of the hashtag #NursesUnite, Behar, 72, addressed the controversy on Wednesday’s broadcast, saying that she was “just not paying attention” and didn’t realize Johnson was a nurse.
“I was looking at a Miss America tape, and there s a woman wearing an outfit with a stethoscope, and I m thinking is she in a costume?” Behar said. “It’s not like I was trying to be funny. It was just stupid and inattentive. I didn’t know what the hell I was talking about.”
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The View season 19 premiered on Sept. 8 with Behar rejoining the cast following her 2013 departure after 16 seasons.
Originally, the comedian said in July she had rejected an offer to return to the show because “they wouldn’t really negotiate well enough.”