Jimmy Kimmel Won’t Hire Light Crew That Burned Pro-Lifer, Won’t Apologize
by Steven Ertelt
July 5, 2010
Hollywood, CA (LifeNews.com) — The producers of the Jimmy Kimmel television talk show, whose lighting crew burned a pro-life advocate protesting abortion outside his studio, say they will not hire the lighting crew for future work. However, despite protests during his live program, Kimmel refuses to apologize.
As LifeNews.com reported last week, a group of pro-life advocates from the organization Survivors of the Abortion Holocaust protested at Kimmel’s studios.
Members of Kimmel’s crew reportedly responded by hurling insults and taunts at young people standing on the public sidewalk in Hollywood. When they refused to leave, members of the crew turned powerful spotlights on them.
Ryan Bueler was one of the people holding the signs and he was in an area where a light crew had stationed themselves to spot a stunt scheduled to happen later that afternoon by the Jimmy Kimmel Live show. His skin was burned as he braved the heat of the spotlight placed inches from him.
Members of the pro-life group sent a letter to Jimmy Kimmel requesting a public apology for his lighting crew purposefully burning a teenager. They waited a few days for an apology and then 100 members of the group held two peaceful demonstrations outside of Kimmel’s home on Wednesday and Thursday requesting an apology and asking Kimmel to protect the right to free speech.
Afterwards, the Survivors held another peaceful demonstration outside of Jimmy Kimmel Live studios on Thursday.
Four of the pro-life advocates secured free tickets to the live taping of Jimmy Kimmel Live and, during the program, requested an apology from Kimmel. Police eventually escorted them out of the studios.
Teenagers Walter Gazave and Marissa Streett, and adults Beth Hockel and Brandi Swindell were handcuffed and detained for over an hour as dozens of other pro-life advocates stood outside and chanted, asking for an apology.
After negotiations between the Survivors members and producers for Jimmy Kimmel Live, Kimmel’s producers promised pro-life advocates Patrick Mahoney and Joseph Slovenec that Jimmy Kimmel Live would never hire the assaulting light crew again and LAPD released the four detained pro-life people.
Timmerie Millington, Survivors’ spokesperson, told LifeNews.com yesterday: "Today we celebrate our country’s independence, and the right to free speech is one of our most cherished American values."
She said the pro-life advocates rightfully "refused to have their message oppressed and persevered in standing for the rights to ‘Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness’ that are clearly stated in the Declaration of Independence" and that they will "defend life and liberty for pre-born children in the womb, and will continue to do so despite the pressure to be silent."
Millington said her group "thanks Mr. Kimmel for promising not to hire the malicious lighting crew" and she hopes "Kimmel will always err on the side of free speech and the constitution."
"We hope those members of the lighting crew who assaulted Ryan Bueler will never attempt to silence anyone’s right to free speech again," she said.
Bueler, who estimates that he was under the lights for around 15 minutes, did not sustain threatening or serious injuries; however, his skin was noticeably darker on the areas where the lights hit. The heat from the lights was hot enough to partially melt Bueler’s bracelet and the sign he was holding.
Despite being on scene and shown video footage of the occurrence, LAPD did not arrest any members of the light crew.
Bueler was just glad to see that the pro-life message was being spread to the crowd.
"It was worth it just to see fifty people praying on Hollywood Boulevard," Bueler said after the event, referring to the attention that the event garnered, which was spurred on by efforts — utilizing a bullhorn — to inform bystanders of what had happened.
ACTION: Contact ABC, which broadcasts the Jimmy Kimmel show, at https://abc.go.com/site/contact-us
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