Image courtesy of Twitter
A now-deleted tweet from Marty Griffin's Twitter account
KDKA television and radio personality Marty Griffin posted a tweet on social media Wednesday morning that appears to make light of sexual assault and harassment. The post comes in the midst of almost daily reports about men in positions of power sexually assaulting and harassing women.
At 10:15 a.m. on Dec. 6, Griffin tweeted from his account a meme of a toy elf recording four Barbie dolls sitting in a sink filled with bubbles with “elf on the shelf being investigated for sexual misconduct.” Griffin
wrote on the tweet “Where does it end?”
Four people replied on Twitter and two of them didn't appreciate the post. One wrote “not funny” and another “Are you this dumb or are you playin' us?”
Pittsburgh Action Against Rape director Alison Hall says she is “disappointed” in Griffin’s tweet. “This is not a time to try to be silly about this topic. I would expect more of him.”
Pittsburgh City Paper
emailed Griffin at 4:25 p.m. for comment and the tweet was deleted a short time after. CP
has reached out to both Griffin and KDKA management for comment. We will post their comments when and if they respond.
Hall says the timing of Griffin's tweet is especially egregious, given that Time Magazine
on Wednesday named it’s “Person of the Year”
as the women of the #MeToo movement for speaking out about sexual assault
and sexual misconduct. “He took today to send this and something that is this absurd,” says Hall.
Griffin’s tweet also comes in light of many people in Pennsylvania and across the country that are taking sexual assault more seriously than ever before. On Dec. 6, Pennsylvania U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-Scranton) called for U.S. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minnesota) to resign amidst Franken’s sexual-misconduct allegations. U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Arizona) even donated $100 to Alabama Democratic senate candidate Doug Jones in hopes of defeating Republican candidate Roy Moore, who has been accused by multiple women of inappropriate sexual behavior with teenage girls.
Earlier this month, Pennsylvania Democratic Party advisor Valerie Kean Staab
wrote on her personal Facebook account a series of posts that downplayed the seriousness of sexual-assault and sexual-misconduct allegations. On Dec. 5, Staab quit her position among criticism from Allegheny County Democratic Chair Nancy Mills and others.
Hall worries that Griffin is sending the wrong message to his more than 14,000 followers on social media. “I am sure he has a lot of followers,” says Hall. “Was there not something else to use your platform for, in a more meaningful way? I expected more from him.”
Griffin also posted his tweet to his Facebook page
, and while his quote “Where does it end?” is visible, the meme image does not appear in his timeline. The Facebook post got a positive response with nine likes and three comments, one saying “LOVE IT...LOL.” Also, while some of the comments on his tweet were critical, the tweet was retweeted nine times and liked 19 times before it was deleted.
Hall says that if Griffin was attempting to tell a joke, it’s not funny. “This topic should not be handled this way,” says Hall. “[Sexual misconduct] is so persavaise. Why are you making a joke?”