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Kramer Uses the "Black Friends" Defense

11/27/2006 12:36 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

In a desperate effort to salvage what's left of his poisoned reputation, a "shattered" Michael Richards told Reverend Jesse Jackson that he "loves" black people, adding that some of his "best friends were African-Americans."
Kramer says sorry

Interviewed on Jackson's "Keep Hope Alive" radio show on Sunday, the former "Seinfeld" star again claimed that he harbors no racist feelings toward black people, and blamed his racist diatribe on months of pent up rage that, "has no color."

Richards explained that he should have recognized his problem, when his frustration with hecklers started affecting his comedy routine. "It's a rough and tumble environment," Richards claimed, "I've been noticing how aggressive my work had been getting."

Jackson was convinced that the problem had deeper roots, telling Richards, "You used the word nigger, and then the lynching scene ... have you been here before?" Richards responded, "No, no, no, no, no. That's why I'm shattered by it. The way it just came through me like a freight train."

According to Richards' publicist, Howard Rubenstein, the disgraced actor has already begun psychiatric counseling in Los Angeles to learn how to manage his anger and understand why he made the racist remarks.

166 COMMENTS

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151.

Fourth Grade Mathmatician    

Dear Yuck Mouth,

It is difficult to say why Blacks get so upset. I guess they are ashamed of being brought to this wonderful country in chattel slavery.

They may feel ashamed that thier country of origin has the lowest level of development.

It maybe that they have a lot of pent up rage from always being viewed as Sub Humans.

I have a suggesstion for you: Today sit down and watch an Episode of Good Times;

Listen to James and Florida, and you will see that there are some descent, hardworking and postitive parental figures out there.

And never give up on your thurst for Knowledge.

Kindest Regards,
Jim Crow

2854 days ago
152.

Rachel    

Tommie hates whites because he has no white friends and white girls find him disgusting. He thinks if he sucks up to the blacks maybe he'll have better luck. Doubt it.

2854 days ago
153.

Angie    

Shut up people! If you're really confident in you own skin, than who the hell cares what other people think of you or say, no matter what race you are. Get over it already!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2854 days ago
154.

the truth    

well Jim you can keep waiting on that apology because YOU ARE NEVER GOING TO GET IT

2853 days ago
155.

leozine    

Lets talk about GIVE and TAKE for a Moment IN RELATION TO THIS ONGOING ISSUE..
SHORT SUMMARY OF AMERICAN HISTORY...European Explorers trying to reach India Sail West and runs into Norh, South America... Native Americans welcome Europeans.. early equal GIVE and TAKE, leads to Europeans TAKING all Resources (land #1) and little to no GIVING, Native Americans GIVE welcome and equal treatment/ TAKES Death to low Numbers, Buffalo Bills Wild Side show, Reservation Baron Land and liquor (poison) from Conquering Europeans... Europeans Sail to Africa to exchange resources.. GIVE guns and amo, TAKE African labor from Africans (agreed exchange Africans selling/trading Africans).. Sail to North & South America, GIVE African labor to European land owner (taken land)/ TAKE currency (sold like livestock).. African American GIVE - up all religion, language, culture, family members, sweat, mind, soul to work plantation/ TAKES Mental and Physical Abuse of whips, burnings, lynching, Police and Firemen Beatings, Slave title, torture, JimCrow laws, 3/5ths human label, N***r label, lazy label, forced religion.. (forced, no choice..)..NOW, Today Children of European American Ancestors GIVE ideas, inventions, innovation, research, contributions to society (ALL DUE TO-->)/ TAKE Land, Old money, family knowledge, institutional Education knowledge, possitions of power and control in Professional positions Inheritance... Today Children of Native American ancestors GIVE Culture and knowledge/ TAKE Reservation poverty Inheritance.. Today Children of African American Ancestors GIVE ideas, Respect, culture, knowledge/ TAKE low level education, Gangs, Disrespect, Unbanished Slave title, Unbanished N***r title, Ghetto, Broken slave mind, hate for Skin color and all things Given Inherittance... NOW that being said.. Racist are those who have power to overpower.. The Term N***r was used by those in power, European American, to overpower African Americans Mentally... As you can see the effects are still evident today by the mere mention of the word.. What Michael Richards did was unexcusable Consciously, Unfortunately his Unconscious was just being it self as it was programmed to and will always be unless its reprogrammed!!!!!!!!! Apologizing is a step.. I would only wish that America would take the same steps, Take Responsibility of your History, not just the Good but also the Bad.. So we all can start moving in a healed positive direction.
.. ALWAYS QUESTION YOUR SELF, YOUR FAMILY, YOUR COUNTRY, YOUR PEERS, AND OTHERS AS TO HOW MUCH GIVING AND/OR TAKING IS BEING EXERCISED. Thank you for reading, Your Fellow Human Being.

2853 days ago
156.

T.J.    

All I can say is God help us all!!!

Not just about this whole Michael Richards situation.....but how we treat one another! What's funny is that I forget how prejudice, racist and just plain cruel people can be....and sometimes it takes a sitation like the Michael Richards' incident to remind me how far we've come....and how much farther we need to go. I'm sitting here reading posts from different people...and I'm just saddened at how people speak of others from different races.....without even knowing anything about them!!! Why are we like this with one another??? Being a black man myself.....I know those words do hurt.....but it also hurts when I hear it come from another black person just as much!!! I do understand freedom of speech.....but from my understand.....these freedoms are to be carried out in a way that doesn't infringe on the rights of others...the right to live happily and peacefully...so we do and should have to think about the words we speak....and how it affects others.....the same way we would want someone to respect our own feelings! Why can't we just simply treat others the way we ourselves want to be treated???? Do you know how much better our world would be if we all made the effort to do just that!!! No matter what race you are.....we all have the same basic needs.....wants and dreams!!! The bottom line is all cultures are here to stay.....we have all made good contributions to this society!!! Throughout history we've tried HATE and we've tried war to solve our problems.......do you not think that it's high time we try using respect and understanding???? Come on people....we are all here in our society together......yes I said OUR as in everyones!!!....nobody's going anywhere!!!!...and it's better that way!!!! All cultures should continue to do their best to contribute positively to our way of life.....it's our duty! Lets try to work together for human kind! We are all HUMAN....are we not!!! Let us not forget that!!!! God Bless people!

T.J.

2851 days ago
157.

Steven    

i think this clown should be takin right off TV.....the racist wouldn't have said the stuff he said if he didn't mean it...i dont care how mad he was. you dont say the N word in any way, especially such a profane way. and also this fool is lucky he didn't get attacked because me personally if someone attacked me verbally like that in such a racial way i wouldn't hesitate to get on stage and throw him a beating.......and as for the black friends defence....how much did you have to pay them because after saying something like that i know they wouldn;t be on shows defending you....they would be mad as hell....face it Richards...you ruined your career by letting everyone know how racist you really are....go join the KKK now you sick S.O.B

2848 days ago
158.

Henrietta    

People let's not give this person any more publicity. I dont care what he thinks one way or another, for instance if I had any thing to say about him I would only say get a hair do dork

2848 days ago
159.

pam    

Richards ahould just leave it alone. The hecklers said things to him and he said things to them. Let's just get over it and move on. Its not big deal, matter of fact it is getting verly old.

2848 days ago
160.

Kevin    

Here is what it is about, and it is not about racism. Whites and blacks need to put aside their various prejudices on the theory of anger. It is rather simple. If you are angry at somebody, then you use whatever ammo you think will hurt those you are angry at the most. And in order to not make yourself look like you share the same fault you are using as ammo you choose something that is different about the person you are angry at. If the hecklers were white Richards would have chosen something about them that he could use against them. Maybe they were female. Then he would badmouth females. Maybe they were overweight. He would use weight as a weapon. When you are angry, you use whatever is the most obvious difference and would give you the biggest ability to dig at the one you are angry at. This has nothing to do with race or general attitudes about race. It is about immediate anger. If it were a black commedian, and black hecklers, and he let his anger get away from him, he would have locked onto the most obvious difference. Maybe they looked like geeks. Maybe the hecklers were overweight. You hit them where you think it will hurt. That is how it works. The human mind can make up connections based on differences in an instant. Watch somebody argue. They both look for ways to jab at the other. With whatever differences firsts pops into their minds.

2847 days ago
161.

Philip    

Ok, great. Richards says the "N" word, and gets reamed and crucified. Some former professor from the University of North Carolina, who happens to be African-"American", spouts off that " . . . all white people should be exterminated from the face of the earth . . . ", and what do we hear from Jesse Jackson and the "Rev." Sharpton? Nada. Zip. Nothing. It just goes to prove it's OK for a black person to condone and incite violence against others, but let a non-black exercise his or her right to free speech, and POW!!! Exterminated from the face of the earth. Haven't people gotten the hint that the more you play the race card, the more it hurts the ones playing it. Because everyone knows it's simply a ploy, and game. Saying "you're racist" is just another way to get your 15 minutes of fame at someone else's expense with no justification or basis in reality.

2847 days ago
162.

Sydney    

"Richards told Reverend Jesse Jackson that he "loves" black people, adding that some of his "best friends were African-Americans."
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I can't even believe he went there. That is about the dumbest thing anyone can say. If you want to prove that you are completely disassociated from people of a certain race, all you need to do is open your mouth and say, "Why, some of my best friends are (insert race here)."

2844 days ago
163.

Sydney    

To Kevin/#170

Oh come on. You're rationalizing and trying to explain away what Richards said when really, there is absolutely NO excuse or justification for the vile things he said on stage. Perhaps YOU would have used the types of things he said to hurt people if YOU were angry, but certainly, I would not have. And I don't think that I am alone there. I think that like me, there are plenty of people who not only wouldn't have said what Richards said, it never would have even corssed our minds to do so. So don't believe that you speak for everyone when you say that people use whatever they think will hurt the other party the most, up to and including graphic racial epithets, when they are angry.

Because it is in no way shape or form true that EVERYONE lowers themselves to the level where they begin to use racial slurs and graphic verbal depictions of lynchings just because they are pissed off. I find it sad and discouraging that you say that you handle your disappointments and anger in this manner, lashing out in the most hurtful way possible.

2844 days ago
164.

Kristin L.    

Hey Puh der Baer, you sound about as intelligent as Michael Richards. What? Just because you watch Seinfeld at least twice a week ( should I give you your gold star now or later?) I suppose it makes you an expert in race relations--why the hell are you blaming black people like WE were the ones who made Richards say that crap? He said exactly what was on his mind (as wrong as it was)~~basically bringing his racism to light. Smarten up! By the way smart guy, it's spelled, (c-o-n-s-c-i-e-n-c-e).

Tootles!

2843 days ago
165.

robertpbormann    

It is a nice comment.

2832 days ago
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