Fire Whoopi Goldberg? That Won’t Fix What’s Wrong with ‘The View’ (Or Anything Else on TV)


While shouting “Fire Whoopi Goldberg!” might be a good thing, getting rid of The View’s star for her ignorant comments about the Holocaust will not fix it.

Goldberg was temporarily suspended by her network early Tuesday. Kim Goodwin, President of ABC News, stated in a statement that “Effectively immediately, I suspend Whoopi Goldberg from ABC News for two weeks because of her hurtful and wrong comments.”

The New York Post’s famous gossip page was informed that “ABC staffers” and Disney Network executives had said that Whoopi was too extreme. Board members don’t like her apology and demand a more detailed retraction.

Worse, the 66-year old former actress and semi-funny comedian believe Whoopi is now too controversial for the show.

No one at ABC is concerned about what Goldberg actually said. Their real concern is that Goldberg generated a controversy that could cause ratings to drop or worse, make advertisers abandon the long-running infotainment show.

It’s rare to be a “good TV host” — this is why big-name players are paid so well. However, “being good at TV” is not a skill that can be combined with “being knowledgeable, balanced and able communicate those things via visual media.” This is because TV news’ economic incentives wouldn’t allow it.

TV is a visual medium. It’s great at conveying emotions and feelings through images.

It comes down to survival of the fittest. In TV Land, the fittest don’t necessarily have the best knowledge or the most balanced. The most attractive, sensationalistic, and able to generate strong emotions from viewers tend to be the fittest.

Goldberg has two of the three, which isn’t bad.

You can fire Whoopi Goldberg, or you don’t. However, if she is fired, the economics behind TV infotainment demand that ABC News hire someone very similar to her.