Do you think Jessica Simpson should apologize to American Indians for her "Indian giver" comment?
—CChamblis, via Twitter
Well, if they're upset—and they are—and if Jessica Simpson wants American Indians to watch her scintillating new VH1 show—and let's be honest here, she needs every eyeball she can get—then an apology would certainly help.
Just how offensive was Simpson last week? Well, her phrasing went something like this...
During an interview with TMZ, Simpson was asked whether she wanted her ex Tony Romo to return a pricy boat she'd bought him. She replied, "I'm not an Indian giver."
The phrase has been used for generations as a derogatory term against American Indians, stereotyping them as people who give gifts and then try to take them back or secure something else in return. American Indian groups expressed disappointment: "Most people flippantly use the comment 'Indian giver' without realizing its true meaning," the National Congress of American Indians executive director Jacqueline Pata told Us Weekly.
The Twitterers got all het up, too. One suggested that "us Indians use the term Dumb Texan Blonde Giver."
How has Jessica responded to the criticisms? TMZ has some footage of Simpson exiting a restaurant last night, responding to a question about the "Indian giver" controversy with the cryptic phrase, "I am Indian, all right?" (The inevitable headline: Jessica Simpson Dates Cowboys, Is an Indian.)
Attempts to find out what the heck Simpson is talking about are ongoing. Her reps didn't respond to a request for comment.
Simpson's new show, The Price of Beauty, is targeted for a 2010 release by VH1, which told me today it would have no comment on all this. But if the Simpson comment bothers you, it might not hurt to let the network know.
Or maybe just make a big ol' bonfire out of Jessica Simpson lingerie.
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Jessica Simpson does and says lots of things. Did you know? We collect them on her fan page.