Aflac Fires Gilbert Gottfried Over Japan Tweets.
Disability insurer Aflac has ended its 10 year deal with comedian Gilbert Gottfried, the voice of the Aflac duck, after Gottfriend made several Japan/Tsunami jokes on Twitter over the weekend. Some of the tweets included,
“What does every Japanese person have in their apartment? Flood lights.”
“What do the Japanese have in common with @howardstern? They’re both radio active.”
“Japan is really advanced. They don’t go to the beach. The beach comes to them.”
“Japan called me. They said “maybe those jokes are a hit in the US, but over here, they’re all sinking.””
Gottfried is a comedian who is known for his extreme renditions of “The Aristocrats”, the most crude and offensive joke of all time (and a joke he’s publicly told repeatedly since becoming the voice of the Aflac duck). What did people expect? There’s no way he would leave this topic alone. In my opinion (and keep in mind I’m a fan of poor taste), these tweets didn’t seem to be all that offensive, at least compared to other jokes he’s told. But Aflac didn’t see the humor.
The jokes “were lacking in humor and certainly do not represent the thoughts and feelings of anyone at Aflac.”
Why is Aflac so offended and upset? Aflac made its name in the 1970s selling cancer expense policies in Japan and still makes 75% of its revenue in Japan.
Ahhh. Makes sense now.