Tennessee CEO Compares Michelle Obama to Chimpanzee

Sunday, March 7, 2010


They say the south will rise again. I certainly hope not. Not if this is an example of what passes for humor in states below the Mason-Dixon line.

Tennessee Hospitality Association CEO Walt Baker sent an email that compares First Lady Michelle Obama to Tarzan’s sidekick Cheeta, the chimpanzee. At the bottom of the email is a photo of Obama, caught in an awkward moment with her lips pursed, and one of a chimpanzee wearing a similar expression.

Baker’s racist and sophomoric effort at humor wasn’t embraced by all. In response, the Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau decided to drop its contract with Walt Baker’s marketing firm over the email. They issued the following statement:

“On behalf of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau, I want to publically apologize for the offensive email sent yesterday by Tennessee Hospitality Association CEO Walt Baker. As a recipient of the email, I am embarrassed for both my organization and myself. The content is deeply hurtful to all in our city and beyond. The attitudes expressed in the email are both appalling and unacceptable, and are not shared or condoned in anyway by the NCVB or by me personally. Nashville’s hospitality industry has worked tirelessly to create a welcoming environment for our visitors and this behavior discredits the work done by so many. After serious consideration, the NCVB has made the decision to terminate its contract with Mr. Baker’s marketing agency, Mercatus Communications. I have communicated this action and my deep regrets about the email to the Mayor’s Office and other hospitality industry leaders.”

This entry was posted in Michelle Obama, News, Southern Racists and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Tennessee CEO Compares Michelle Obama to Chimpanzee

  1. feminazi says:

    One definition of morality is “what do you do when no one is watching.” Walt Baker may hold opinions such of this but what is striking to me is, he actually committed his views to an email and sent the document out for others to read. I don’t know what to say. It’s 2010 and I’m angered to see people still think this way. He’s obviously stuck in the 1950’s.

  2. Democracy7 says:

    It is deeply troubling, the continued ethnical slurs directed by so many people who clearly lack moral values. I am glad that Baker’s group is being blackballed. It is time everyone stood up for what is right, and close the door against bigotry once and for all.

  3. Harry says:

    It’s Tennessee. Consider the source. Some places never change.

  4. bradfrmphnx says:

    Whether you like the Obama’s or not, there is not excuse for this kind of rascist behavior in the 21st Century. Baker got his ass handed to him exactly the way he should have. I read where he said he was just doing it out of political humor…yeah, right.

  5. R.J. says:

    I’m not surprised. The South has always been a haven for racists.

  6. Pechanga says:

    What an idiot.

    I hope old Walt enjoyed the email because it cost him the farm. I doubt other firms will hire him once the word gets out that he said something so cruel and inappropriate.

  7. okjimm says:

    I believe it is just another result of the climate Fox News and their ilk have created in America. No manners… and grossly snide and sniveling comments are now considered ‘wit’ & ‘satire’. Sheeeet. iffen it weren’t for football and history channel I don’t think I could watch TV.

  8. Jim says:

    What an idiot! Thank goodness the contract with this outfit was immediately terminated.

  9. Fran says:

    The Tennessee Inhospitality Association
    tied the knot in their own noose.

    They can apologize all they want, but the genie is already out of the bottle.

  10. Jill says:

    Just another example of RACIST “political humor” coming out of the state of Tennessee. When will they ever quit? These are the same folks who are so quick to call themselves “Good Christians”…amazing!!!!

  11. mipolitico says:

    I really do hate the South, and not just because I’m a WASP. There are still some of us who realized the South committed treason in the Civil War, rejected American law openly until the 1980s in terms of civil rights and stopped electing open racists in the mid 2000s.

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