The Onion Goes Sour

Micheal Covington

The Oscars are a very exciting night for the entertainment industry. It’s the night that the most prestigious movie awards are handed out and the industry takes an opportunity to recognize all the industry professionals who were at the top of their field for that year.

The Oscars are also an opportunity for Hollywood to pat itself on the back, take stock of the previous year and look forward to the next year. However, The Oscars are also an opportunity for people to make marry, crack a joke and lighten up what would be an otherwise serious and drab affair.

However, when does a joke go too far? And when does ‘free speech’ cross the line from tasteful to tasteless. The Oscars this year were no stranger to controversy, with host Seth McFarlane giving a musical review of all the years boobs, and more than one bit earning the ire of certain factions of the Hollywood community.

What stole the show wasn’t even broadcast on TV, instead the controversy came from Twitter, from a comedy website. The Onion, a website that apes a fake newspaper posted a tweet during the Oscars that called out 9 year old Best Actress Nominee Quvenzhane Wallis, labeling her with a lewd and highly derogatory profanity.

The tweet, which has since been deleted, generated an enormous backlash against The Onion. The Onion following the controversy posted a full apology to Miss Wallis, saying, “Miss Wallis, you are young and talented and deserve better. All of us at The Onion are deeply sorry.”

The tweet which was originally supposed to be satirical crossed the line of good taste. But what’s rare about this situation is that The Onion has been in controversial situations before, and very rarely have they apologized for their particular form of ‘gone to far journalism.’