Recently, Rosie O’Donnell confessed that she had a crush on Elisabeth Hasselbeck during their cohosting days on The View.
Hasselbeck went on Fox & Friends and responded: "I read it and I immediately started praying."
She said similar things in an appearance on The View, and is getting dragged for coming across as downright homophobic.
First, here were Rosie O’Donnell’s exact words in her book, Ladies Who Punch: The Explosive Inside Story of the View.
Reportedly, in order to quash rumors that she and Hasselbeck were enemies back in the day, Rosie … overcorrected.
She says that she "loved" her conservative cohost and admitted that she had "a little bit of a crush" on her.
Rosie then suggested that there were "underlying lesbian tones on both [of their] parts" while they were on The View.
She then made reference to Hasselbeck’s past as a softball player, implying Hasselbeck may not be entirely straight herself.
Hasselbeck appeared on both Fox & Friends and The View to respond to Rosie’s statements.
Sunny Hostin asked Hasselbeck about this as she assumed the role of guest host on The View.
"That’s the breath of the Holy Spirit," Hasselbeck responds. "Like please, Holy Spirit, work through me right now, so I don’t answer my own mind."
"This needs to be addressed both truthfully and … maybe where I wouldn’t have addressed it with grace some years past," Hasselbeck admits.
When you finish hearing her response, you wonder how much worse it would have been years ago.
"One," Hasselbeck says. "I think what she said was reckless. Untrue."
That sounds fine, until she says: "Not only insulting — disturbing."
Hasselbeck tries to spin it, saying: "When it comes to … how she felt about somebody in the workplace."
"That somebody happened to be me," she says. "But if you replace what Rosie said, and you take her name out, and you put in … ‘Robert.’"
"Then we would be in a situation where you would see the objectification of a woman in the workplace," Hasselbeck claims.
"And that’s disturbing," Hasselbeck claims. "Because when we may be really against that from a man to a woman."
"You don’t get a pass because you’re a lesbian," she suggests.
"The feeling was not mutual," Hasselbeck insists. "But I did respect her as a cohost."
She adds: "As I think it should happen in all workplaces."
She emphasizes that, in very religious terms, she forgives Rosie for her statements.
"Secondly," Hasselbeck continues. "I think what she says about female athletes …"
"If you’re an athletic girl," she says. "And you’re competitive and you’re gritty …"
"It’s a lie and it’s reckless to attach a sexuality to that," Hasselbeck asserts.
"And I think it’s selfish on her part," she accuses. "And I would say it to my friend."
"Just because you’re athletic," Hasselbeck concludes. "Doesn’t have anything to do with your sexual preference."
One, having a crush on a coworker and admitting it many, many years later is not the same thing as objectification.
It should not in any way be equated with workplace sexual harassment.
If Rosie had made lewd anatomical comments about Hasselbeck, or made it an issue while they were on The View, that would be different.
But as Joy Behar correctly points out, Rosie’s comment about having a crush was not lewd or inappropriate.
Hasselbeck refers to an alleged reference to Rosie trying to "take her under her wing."
Unless Hasselbeck is accusing Rosie of inappropriate behavior during their time on The View, then it doesn’t sound like anything inappropriate went down.
Second of all, Hasselbeck is wrong to equate a crush from a woman to a crush from a man.
Many lesbians are inundated with the idea that they are "predatory" by being attracted to women. That is massively unfair.
In contrast — and I’m a dude writing this — we all know that, historically, men with crushes are much more likely to make it a problem.
Anyway, there are non-homophobic ways of saying that you’re straight.
It would have been cool if Elisabeth Hasselbeck had found one of those instead of immediately resorting to prayer and stereotypes.
However, Hasselbeck is absolutely right about one thing — and we don’t say that often.
Assuming that a person is gay because of their profession or hobby or degree of athleticism is absolutely wrong.
It’s misleading and, while not insulting, certainly unfair.
While softball is stereotypically associated with lesbians, stereotypes are inherently demeaning and dehumanizing.
Rosie should know better than to perpetuate that kind of talk.
Our favorite part of this whole dang interview was Meghan McCain telling Hasselbeck she’s "been a fan of you my entire life."
Hasselbeck is only 7 years older than Meghan.
If you ever really want to hurt the feelings of someone young enough to be your sibling, tell them that you’ve been a fan of them "your whole life."
We don’t think that Meghan meant any offense by that.