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January 15, 2015 2:24 pm

CNN Anchor Jim Clancy’s Twitter Account Shut Down Following Disability Slur, Insulting Exchange With Pro-Israel Activists

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CNN anchor Jim Clancy's Twitter account was shut down following an abusive exchange with pro-Israel activists. Photo: Twitter

The Twitter account of veteran CNN anchor Jim Clancy has been shut down, following an angry exchange the presenter held with a group of pro-Israel activists in the wake of the terrorist massacre at French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, during which he derided his opponents as the “hasbara team” and used a derogatory term for disabled people.

As The Algemeiner reported last week, the exchange began with Clancy issuing a bizarre defense of the cartoons of the Prophet Muhammed published by a Danish newspaper in 2005 and by Charlie Hebdo in 2011, which led to violent protests in both western capitals and throughout the Islamic world. “The cartoons NEVER mocked the Prophet. They mocked how the COWARDS tried to distort his word. Pay attention,” Clancy wrote.

When Oren Kessler of the Washington, DC-based Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD) responded that Clancy’s claim was “absolutely untrue,” because Charlie Hebdo had been previously targeted for publishing an issue in which the Prophet Muhammed was listed as a “guest editor,” Clancy – whose obsession with Israeli settlement policy is well-known among CNN viewers – responded with the word, “Hasbara?”  (“Hasbara,” the Hebrew word for “explaining,” is often invoked by Israel’s opponents to dismiss views with which they disagree, even when, as in this case, the matter at hand has nothing to do with Israel.)

Clancy further muddied the waters with a follow-up tweet in which he told another user, “Get a grip, junior. It’s my Friday night. You and the Hasbara team need to pick on some cripple on the edge of the herd.”

Clancy’s tweets, including his use of an offensive term to describe people with disabilities, resulted in a flood of complaints to CNN. Jay Ruderman, the head of the Ruderman Family Foundation, which promotes the inclusion of people with disabilities in the Jewish community, informed Clancy on Twitter that the word “cripple” is derogatory. The anchor’s response was to block both Ruderman’s personal account and the account of the Ruderman Foundation.

The Foundation subsequently issued a press release in which Jay Ruderman deemed Clancy’s “cripple” remark “appalling,” and questioned how “in this day and age a senior anchor at CNN, a world leader in the media, would use a word such as ‘cripple’, which is a derogatory term for people with disabilities.”

As of Thursday morning, Clancy’s account, which had over 50,000 followers, was no longer visible on Twitter. Neither CNN nor Clancy have explained publicly why the account was apparently deleted.

Jay Ruderman told The Algemeiner that he didn’t think closing down the account was “the right response,” arguing that “social media allows us to have an open dialogue, it’s an important tool that should be used.”

“An organization held in the esteem that CNN is held in should use this as a teaching moment,” Ruderman said, pointing out that when an unnamed White House adviser recently insulted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by describing him as “Aspergery,” Obama Administration officials quickly reached out with an apology for the “unfortunate misuse of language.”

“People are allowed to make mistakes,” Ruderman said. “The best thing is to own up to those mistakes and learn from them.”

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  • Elie

    It seems that the Europeans who had waged against Moslems crusders years for more than 100 years – under so many execuses – now have changed their SLOGANS against Moslems under: Islam Terrorism!

  • Cherryl

    To say that Clancy should be forgiven for his Antisemetic rant where he used hurtful language towards handicapped people as well does not take into account that as a CNN commentator language , vocabulary,expression and content are what makes him a professional . He reached the top of his field by articulating his thoughts for the past 34 years ,.he said exactly what he felt . He said it in an offenceful , hateful way choosing words which emphases his hostility and anger towards Israel and his total lack of sensitivity to the disabled . Why should anyone listen to him . I for one am glad his voice has been silenced .

  • charlie johnson

    He still has a right to his own opinions.He could get out his laptop and write here just as I am doing. The only difference is that he wont have a camera and microphone to broadcast his opinions into four or five million TV sets surrounded by couch potatoes, Nor will he get big paychecks for doing just what I do here. Welcome to our world mister Clancy. How do you like it down here at the bottom of the pyramid?

  • judithg

    the drunks and the dry drunks seem to be proliferating all over the cable tv news and of course, twitter. neither discriminates between the stupid and the soulless. anti-semitism, outright Jew hatred of the ol’ nazi stripe can be heard and seen all over the media. hey, how about that BBC.

  • steven L

    Shame on CNN and this fanatic Clancy. CNN needs to cleans the “vermine” in its midst. But being on the left, it is unlikely that CNN will do what it should. Get rid of losers.

  • Michael Garfinkel

    Clearly, Clancy is vulgar and obnoxious, and too self-enamored to know when to shut up.

    Still, the attack based on the unfortunate use of the term “cripple” smacks of weasel tactics.

  • Fred Spagat

    Why does this cretin still have a job…I would show him the door and let it his his ruddy ass before it closes

  • David M

    Mr. Clancy should resign from CNN. He is a “has been” on that network and this use of derogatory terms about people doesn’t help his cause.

  • Where did my comments go ???

  • Kanwal Abidi

    JIM Clancy was a decent and a pragmatic man.
    I am a journalist from Pakistan and watch his program with interest.
    INdeed, The word “cripple” should not have been used, but if he did , just an apology would have resolved the issue. Social media platform is an effective way to get “New from Media” uncensored and precise in 140 characters.

  • Russell Mollot

    I’m fairly certain that he merely misspoke. He surely was referring to the injured and feeble (often the very young) animals which are to be found at the trailing edge of a herd. He not mocking handicapped people; rather, he was mocking Oren Kessler, whose weak arguments would prevail only against a feeble or naïve opponent. The complaints regarding the word “cripple” were totally inappropriate. If he had said that Kessler should try his arguments on some dummies, would the Society for the Deaf have protested?

    • David Scholem

      How disingenuous. Um, that’s mealy-mouthed for the straight-shooting folks who don’t put Umlauts on their naivete.

  • al

    Ruderman thinks that “People are allowed to make mistakes,” which is a good thing to know, given anti-Jewish history or even a ‘pearl’ of Ruderman himself: “An organization held in the esteem that CNN is held in …” Is he talking about the same CNN that every so often will fabricate (or just tailor news), push very questionable judgments about Israel, and so on …?

    Granted though, Clancy ain’t exactly an innocent white dove either, and his work for CNN actually illustrates what I just said about CNN!

    So, why did all these bums cross the road? 😉

    PS: the quotes are from the article above. As for my own pearls…

  • Correction: Only Muslims and liberals hold CNN in “high esteem”..Remember CNN stands for Crescent News Network.

  • Scott

    Please believe me when I state that CNN is pandering to the Aljazeera team. They’re looking to be bought. The more Jim Clancy talks his rubbish, the more they’re interested……

  • BH in Iowa

    Normally I’m against abortion, but Clancy’s mom could have done the world a favor.

  • Travis

    Hopefully Clancy is in “Alcoholics Anonymous” because like Mel Gibson in 2006, I have little doubt that he was drunk that day.

  • Doodad

    The “Hasbara,” epitaph is almost always used by antisemites. Is he one? Likely. Certainly the cripple remark shows he is ignorant enough to qualify. Plus he’s a member of the media which is almost a surefire indicator.

    • samklee

      he sure was, otherwise he would have Chosen his words better – but under alcohol influence, all the truth come out. in the last 20 years, most world medias became hostile to Israel and nowadays Report tailored News without even being concient that they are not reporting evenhadedly

  • Elmo Glick

    Is that Clancy? He looks pretty obese; he needs to try a diet program. I never heard of this guy, really don’t want CNN unless I’m in a public place, like a gym, where they have a TV, and they play CNN so they don’t offend anyone with a more political channel like MNSBC or Fox. I don’t understand these “anchors,” they’re just people who are newsreaders, yet they think they are instant experts with world-class wisdom on any issue just because they’re at a network. Really, if you can get a job reading written news, that’s the only talent it takes. You can be dumber than a box of rocks. He seems to be an anti-semite as well. Welcome to America, the land of opportunity for the dumb who can become instant millionaires by acting smart when you’re actually stupid. I mean, look at Chuck Todd. Another one. No intellect, no talent, he went to college to play his French Horn on scholarship and dropped out.