Buy Michael's books:

An Open Letter to the Bully Tracy Morgan

An Open Letter to the Bully Tracy Morgan

Or: Why people ignore celebrities, even when they’re right

Dear Mr. Morgan,

As a huge fan of NBC‘s 30Rock,  I’ve grown accustomed to your on-screen persona, Tracy Jordan, spewing any amount of stupidity. So it really came as no surprise to me when I read on that you had taken to the stage at the Ryman Auditorium and unleashed a string of unfunniness that I can only hope you intended as a joke. A really bad joke.

Unfortunately, I don’t believe you did intend this as an unfunny joke but instead were attempting to be legitimately funny by singling out in a crass or otherwise shocking way a minority (gays in this case) in order to endear yourself and entertain the majority (everyone else). We have a word for this in our language, Mr. Morgan: bully.

I am not surprised that you think bullied gay kids should just toughen up and deal, Mr. Morgan. Why am I not surprised? Because you, sir, are a bully. You’re part of the problem. But it goes beyond bullying.

As a media celebrity, you have a pulpit from which to speak that many of us — even the more reasonable amongst us — will never have. Because of your hard work and your talent (and more than a little luck, as you yourself have admitted on many occasions), you have a platform from which you can enlighten and edify the people around you.

Take for examples Lady Gaga, Bono, Madonna, Sean Penn, George Clooney and Princess Dianna.  Right there you have individualism and tolerance, international monitary policy as a tool for fighting poverty, children’s rights, disaster relief, genocide awareness in the Sudan, and anti-landmine legislation the world over.

Of course, these individuals will find their messages a little more dulled today because, after all, they’re just celebrities and they don’t know anything. Just look at what that silly Tracy Morgan at the Ryman. That’ll tell you all you need to know about “celebrities”, don’t you think?

I have another solution, Mr. Morgan, for my own personal manner in which this will be handled: I’m turning off your T.V. show as long as you’re on it. Sorry Tina Fey, Sorry Jane. And, Mr. Baldwin, my humblest apologies. I just can’t stand to look at someone who I thought was acting who turns out to really be the person he’s playing on television, not when there is that much venom and hatred behind his “act.”

Yours truly,

Michael DeVault