ABC/Ida Mae Astute; ABC/Lou Rocco
ABC/Ida Mae Astute; ABC/Lou Rocco
Nurses everywhere are incredibly pissed off at the hosts of The View…and for good reason.
In case you missed it, on Tuesday the talk show's hosts—Michelle Collins, Joy Behar, Raven-Symoné and Paula Faris—discussed the talent portion of the Miss America competition, during which Miss Colorado Kelley Johnson performed a monologue about her profession as a nurse while wearing her scrubs and a stethoscope around her neck.
The ladies of The View found the whole performance quite "hilarious," as Collins described it, that she "basically just read her emails out loud." Meanwhile, Behar made the mistake of questioning, "Why does she have a doctor's stethoscope around her neck?"
The commentary resulted in outrage, sparking the hashtag #NursesUnite and an entire Facebook page dedicated to "Show Me Your Stethoscope" on which nurses across the nation are sharing their touching stories about the way they've impacted so many lives.
Despite both Collins and Behar releasing statements of apology, the controversy only continues to grow, even causing Johnson & Johnson as well as Eggland's Best to pull their advertisements from The View. On Friday morning, the hosts again attempted to smooth things over by inviting a group of nurses on the ABC show to discuss the importance of their profession.
But it seems it was all too little too late.
We spoke with several nurses to get their opinion on The View, and to no surprise, they aren't accepting the hosts' apologies. Here's what they had to say:
Sarah, Baltimore: "To hear the hosts of The View speak so ignorantly about a nurse just reminds me again how little people truly know about nurses. We are strong. So strong. We deal with sickness, pain, and death on a daily basis. Some of us hold the hands of mothers who are bringing life into this world, while others are holding the hands of those who are taking their last breaths. We work long, tiring hours that are mostly spent on our feet. We forgo lunch and bathroom breaks to make sure that our patients receive the best care. We work holidays and weekends. We spend more time with our co-workers than our own families. This is the life of a nurse—my life. The life of so many wonderful, caring, amazing people. "
She adds, "So, to the hosts of The View who think that nurses walk around in costumes with doctors' stethoscopes around their necks: think again. At the same time you were sitting in your comfortable chairs, laughing at and judging us, we were too busy to watch your show because we were at work saving lives. When's the last time any of you can say you've done that?!"
Kelsey Tiffany, Los Angeles: "I feel the comments made by The View were wrong and judgmental. It was clear they spoke nationally about a subject they know hardly anything about. As a current nursing student, I have realized how important nurses are—not just in the aspect of caring for the sick, but also being the eyes and ears for the doctors. We don't just wear stethoscopes to look 'cool'—we wear them for a number of medical reasons. The way the women on The View spoke about us made it sounds like we're unnecessary in the medical field. It was incredibly upsetting But when one of them shows up at the hospital and needs our care, we'll be there—because that's our job: to treat every patient with the same amount of true compassion and heartfelt concern."
Lee Ann Lung
Lee Ann Lung, San Antonio: "I give [Miss Colorado] props. Nursing is a talent. For her to bring national attention to it was very admirable. The View's response highlights the danger of some talk shows where some say things that are not very well thought out. It did a disservice to a large portion of the public… I will not watch The View again, they have lost me as a viewer."
Jill Mullins, Indianapolis: "I just think those ladies are ignorant. But I feel like the majority of people have no clue what nurses do all day or how much of their life we hold in our hands… I'm not discrediting the work everyone in a hospital does. We are all important and all need one another to function but I think sometimes, more often than not, the nurses have the majority of the patient's time and problems in their hands.
"Those ladies just don't know. I think their job is 'not a profession,' as the one lady said, but it's probably because I don't really know or understand what their job entails. I'd like them to spend a day with us. Everyone's job is relevant. Everyone."
Alexandra Oetjen Instagram
Alexandra, Mississippi: "I love my job and I could not tell you how happy it makes me to help bring people back to life, help them cope with an illness or even to be a hand to hold when there is nobody there… but nothing about it is easy. I am the one who had to deal with getting yelled at, spit at, called names, etc. I am not unimportant.
"For women who make more money in one hour sitting and blabbing about nonsense than I make in a month, I am absolutely horrified at the lack of respect they have for the working class. I work my butt off in a very busy trauma center and I feel like them saying I dress up in a costume (which is usually covered in blood, feces, vomit and god knows what by the end of the night) is just so disrespectful. I will not watch that show. It is not worth my time...I will continue to do my job that I love because I love it! And I hope that when one of them gets sick and needs somebody, that they really are the side of nursing that they were so very ignorant of."
Obstetrics Nurse: "I think Miss Colorado did a really great job standing up for our profession and it's exciting to see such camaraderie amongst all the nurses. I think the ladies of The View should do a 12 hour night shift."
ABC/Ida Mae Astute
Pediatric Intensive Care Unit Nurse at Los Angeles Children's Hospital: "The comment about the doctor's stethoscope was so ignorant in the fact that multiple disciplines of the medical field use them. Personally, we use a stethoscope assessing our patients more than anyone.
"I still believe there is a level of respect that most people don't have for nursing. Until you've spent 12 hours caring for a child and it breaks your heart every time you walk into the room because the father can barely look at you without crying… You really just can't understand fully some of what we go through until you experience it."
Brianne Marshall, Phoenix: "All I have to say to the women of The View is: your ignorance is showing. Joy Behar admitted that she didn't even know what kind of clip she was looking at. I think this says more about the level of professionalism on their show than it does about nurses. If making uneducated and unfiltered comments about things on nationally broadcast television is your thing, that's fine, but don't be surprised when people inevitably take offense to something you say and stop supporting your show.
"Also, as far as the 'apology' they put out, no thanks, you can keep it. It was less of an apology and more of a 'hey girlfriend, I was totes kidding...some people are so touchy!'"
Renee T., Hoboken, N.J.: "In response to Joy Behar and the rest of the woman on the panel at The View for their reaction to Miss Colorado, I would have to say that I was more disappointed than offended. Their comments demonstrate a fundamental misunderstanding of the important role that nurses have in patient care. Anyone that has ever been seriously ill can appreciate how important it is to have a great nurse. Being a nurse is a talent, just as being a musician, an artist or a dancer. Not everyone can do the job of a nurse and we take great pride in our work/ talent. Hence, the explanation for such a strong united response of outrage from nurses everywhere. It was demeaning when Joy Behar commented on the 'costume' Miss Colorado was wearing. In addition, it was blatantly obvious that their half-hearted apology was made only to quiet the public outrage."
Anonymous, Long Island, N.Y.: "Everyone at work is floored over the comments. People all sharing their personal stories and opinions on Facebook along with a picture—with their stethoscope… It's bringing all nurses together. I love seeing nurses, PCAs and even doctors that I work with recognizing what we do and putting out really heartfelt responses to everything going on. So in a way their comments are bringing recognition to an often under-appreciated job."
One nurse, however, says she's indifferent to the whole thing.
Anonymous, Long Island, N.Y.: "I heard she used nursing as her talent in Miss America or something and they said that wasn't a real talent and nurses all over are furious. I heard about it but I'm indifferent to the whole thing. I don't care."
—Reporting by Baker Machado