CBC Ombudsman blasts O’Leary for racist remark

Controversial business commentator used term offensive to aboriginals


Kevin O’Leary, co-host of The Lang & O’Leary Exchange and head of O’Leary Funds, has been chastised by the CBC’s ombudsman for being “unambiguously offensive” in using a racist term during a broadcast last year. During a televised exchange with his co-host Amanda Lang on October 4, 2010, O’Leary called her “an Indian giver with a forked tongue” in a discussion of BHP Billiton’s bid to take over PotashCorp. Lang immediately rebuked O’Leary by saying “that [term] came from the 19th century and I do not approve.” Neither did Alex Jamieson, an aboriginal man who filed a complaint to the CBC in December 2010. While the CBC will likely make an on-air apology for the incident, O’Leary is not required to express regret because he is a contract commentator.

The National Post

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CBC Ombudsman blasts O’Leary for racist remark

  1. Good for O'Leary. These PC types can stick their head where the sun don't shine. Another parasite living on the taxpayer trying to make the world in his desired image.

    • So i take it you approve of using dated racist terms?

    • Really it's not PC to object to people in a position of privilege using that position to bolster bad stereotypes. If he had used the term "Jewed out of what was theirs." would that have been acceptable? No. Gypped out is another one.
      You can afford the luxury of saying, "It's PC they are only words." but those who are continually hearing it and worse do tend to feel the effects in a visceral way.
      When I hear someone using the excuse about how "PC we've become," it send the same shiver down my spine that any sentence beginning with, "I'm not a racist but…" does.
      The ombudsman isn't trying to create the world in his image as it doesn't take much to say that what O'Leary said was wrong. It would be like me referring to O'Leary using all the nasty Irish stereotypes.

    • So from now on, whenever anybody acts like an a-hole, if I say "don't be such a judgebean!" you won't be offended?

    • There’s a big difference between being overly sensitive to language and objecting to the use of actual racist terms. The expression O’Leary used is actually racist. That’s doesn’t make O’Leary an outright racist, but his use of the term was, which probably just makes him sadly ignorant.

      You are equally ignorant for trying to defend it.

  2. What a load of garbage. Another guy (Jamieson) looking for his 15 minutes. Of course there isn't anything that the CBC won't apologize for, however, I think the rest of the population is sick and tired of opportunists seeking to be insulted at every possible opportunity. I don't know O'Leary or care to but I do know that with every frivolous supposed affront that is used as an attention getter or opportunity to get someones name in the news, I for one take a harder stance against these self annointed do-gooders and their insignificant causes.

    • What does that even mean? What exactly are you doing to take this "harder stance" you speak of? Are you going to file an anti-complaint complaint with the CBC Ombudsman?

    • I thought about this before responding, had If i did not responded, no one would have…and thats a sad comment about Canada in general.

    • Encouraging to see, some, people climbing off their knees to the useless minorities, that got to be minorities, on their own endeavors, regardless of billions spend and laws forced, trying to appease them. Too late though.

    • “harder stance” huh? If O’Leary said it in my company the only stance he would take is lying on his back holding his broken nose. You should take your anti-pc (ei racist) stance out in public sometime and get a lesson in humility.

  3. O'Leary is racist against Natives. I saw the Dragon's Den episode where a native woman was trying to get investment for her mocassin company. O'Leary looked at her with total contempt from beginning to end. Watch the episode and you'll see.

    • Did he say "Indians are genetically inferior"? That is a racist sentence. Did he advocate for differing legal status depending on race?

      • Its so easy, when names can hurt you! lol You fink! lol

  4. Everybody is a racist. Some just more modern, more sophisticated, more full of themselves, some with dozens of easily obtained degrees and various other easily obtained verification of qualifications. I feel I can bring the racist out of any of you two faced fools.

    • How many 'easily obtained' degrees do you have?

  5. If anyone has ever watched Dragons Den or, The Lang & O'leary Exchange, he has the sharp tongue of Simon Cowell, with a little Howard Stern tossed, thats his bit , thats what he gets paid to do I suppose..not saying that its 100% correct …but thats what he does…

  6. I am part native Canadian
    I am a proud Canadian that understands the systems for Native peoples are poorly managed but so is government.
    I am tired of hearing racist comments about native Canadians.
    "Off The reservation" "Indian Giver" 'Red Cent" "Fire Water" "Speak with forked Tongue"
    It is saddening that young adults and children are still effected by these racist terms.
    The fact that Kevin O'leary has such traction on CBC – He should know better – CBC should Know better

    • Bill, I think you illustrated my point admirably. Anyone with a desire for attention or a need to be insulted can take almost any phrase in the english language, or any language likely, and find a problem with it. This is one of the reasons politically correctness has become a disease and such a Canadian preoccupation that we are completely handcuffing our society. Making lots of work and money for lawyers, judges and "human rights" groups though.

      • so then wafer you don’t have a problem with “white privilege” then I guess huh?

  7. O'Leary sure is a strange looking Irishman.. I've never seen a Mediterranean Irish person before. Especially one who loved money so belligerently.

    •  You should probably look up the term “Black Irish”.  Then, YOU can apologize for being racist.  Like O’Leary should.

  8. @Bill GTA
    Regarding the term, 'Red Cent', I don't get it. Never considered the term racist. Pennies are coppered coloured , hence reddish. Perhaps can explain it to me.

  9. O'Leary used an anti-native expression that I first encountered in a 1950s comic book. But he still has a ways to go. In the annals of CBC TV, probably nothing can match the irascible Gordon Sinclair's comment, made in the mid-1970s during a Front Page Challenge broadcast, while a flotilla of Vietnamese "Boat people" were on the high seas escaping the totalitarian rulers in their homeland. No doubt embittered by their defeat at the hands of the communist North Vietnamese forces, the ardent capitalist expressed the hope that the refugees would drown in the ocean. To which his fellow panelist Betty Kennedy, clearly shocked, exclaimed, "Oh, Gordon!"

  10. Truth is offensive? Apparently so, to us, now. But it was aboriginal practice in the old days. Why didn't the ancestors of today's offended aboriginals find it offensive?

    • Because today's aboriginals don't engage in that practice. Maybe if you referred to them as "A group of people from 50 years ago, who happened to engage in a immoral activity, and who also happened to be native" rather than "Indian Givers" then it might be alright. But you don't. Just like its not exactly right for me to refer to you as a "Native land stealer", since it was your ancestors that did that – not you.

  11. What makes a good racist is listening to the whining french. The latest being they now want hockey banned because one of "theirs" skated into an immovable object, with his head! It was the English's fault. That bunch will make us all perfect racist and haters. If we ever get off our knees.

  12. O'Leary thought he was being funny. He should have known better . He is not a comedian and should keep his day job. The comments are dated and inappropriate.

  13. OH LOOK. We now will ruin the Hockey, to protect our poor french. Canada must turn the NHL, upside down, like they did the gun crap. What a useless bunch. Please, JUST SEPARATE!! LOL, Like the sea lice will leave the rich fleshed Salmon!! Seems parasites are everywhere.

    OTTAWA – MPs are warning the National Hockey League if officials won't take escalating violence on the ice seriously, they might take matters into their own hands.

  14. It’s a greates misfortune in Japan. Earthquake, tsunami now troubles in nuclear plant and three patients at a hospital tested positive for radiation exposure… I can’t understand why we can’t predict and to resist such a tragedies? We are able to send man to the moon, we are able even to explore Mars, and we can’t protect ourselves on Earth? Japanese, I’m with you.

  15. O’Leary is an ultra hawk racist. Period. CBC should evolve and get rid of his type of trash.

  16. Nothing racist about it. It’s a common expression. Political correctness is so narrow-mindedly control-freakish.

    • if you were to use derogatory old words for jew you could be arrested, but derogatory FN comments are fine… very telling.

      • Huh? What are you talking about?

        • I am talking about the removal of protections from hate speech in Canada by the federal government for all groups except the Jews. Those protections existed for all vulnerable groups until the CPC decided hate speech was fine… unless its against jews.

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