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Douchebag Decree: Howard "You Finally Wore Us Down with Your Douchiness" Stern

douchebag_decree.jpg

In an effort to cast a net beyond the sea of my own opinions (most of which involve reality television and hilarious animal photos) I asked for reader feedback on this week's Douchebag Decree. The nominations were many, and all were deserving: The Itawamba School District, for its attempts to ban gay couples from attending the prom. Eric Massa, for allegedly sexually harassing employees in his Congressional office. Ken Cuccinelli, for his letter advising public universities to retreat from their policies against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Ben Roethlisberger, for yet another alleged sexual assault. Douchebags are running amok!

However, one nominee rose to the top of the list for me, especially once I realized this Douche Supreme has never been awarded The Decree before. (I guess it was too obvious?) Congratulations, Howard "Douchemeister" Stern.

Stern has been douching it up for years now, so it's not a surprise that he did it again on his shitfest show Monday by fat-shaming the crap out of Academy Award nominee Gabourey Sidibe (with the help of his Douchemistress sidekick, Robin Quivers, of course). What really pushes this particular rant over the line between expected drivel and oh-no-you-didn't, though, is the way in which he frames his hate speech as "helpful advice." Take a listen (I'd set down any sharp objects first, though):

"Oh hey, Gabby? It's me, Howard. Howard Stern, that's right. I just wanted to let you know that you are fat and gross and you should lose weight if you want to continue working or even existing on this planet (which you are the size of, btw). What? Go fuck myself? But I'M HELPING YOU!!!"

Of course, as is necessary for all fat shamers, Stern thinks he's being helpful by telling Sidibe she's fat (omg I bet she had no idea) and that she should "look around her" and see what real actors should look like. Never mind that she was nominated for a frickin' OSCAR, or that, contrary to what his douche-filled brain believes, she has three new projects lined up already. He just couldn't let this opportunity to display his fat phobia pass us by!

Bitch Media isn't the only outlet giving Stern the business for this bullshit (thank goodness for that). Whoopi Goldberg had some truth bombs of her own to drop:

Thank you, someone, for pointing out the obvious: No one would be talking this shit (not even Stern) if Sidibe was a man. Fat men are A-OK (for certain roles, anyway) but a fat woman who can act scares the bejeezus out of a lot of people. (Do they think she's going to attack them? What's the deal?) Therefore, instead of just accepting her existence, they have to attempt to bully and shame her out of their little club where all women look the same. Stern is leading this bully pack, right into Doucheville.

So well done, Stern. In more than a year of Bitch awarding weekly Douchebag Decrees, you've managed to avoid the dubious honor (probably because we prefer to pretend you don't exist). However, with Monday's ill-informed, hateful, fat-shaming diatribe, you finally did it. Gabby Sidibe may not have won her Oscar yet (though you think she should have because she won't ever work again because she's too fatty-fat-fat), but you most certainly won this Douchebag Decree. Now stop hating on Gabby, you fucking douche.

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Comments

23 comments have been made. Post a comment.

Stern

My favorite part of that video is when he snorts around 1:19.

Another racist-sexist-everything-ist radio personality... :P

I actually don't know a thing about Stern (save for what I read in this article)...very deserving of the Douchebag Decree, though. Is it normal of him to rave on in such a hateful way?

hello what about ROBIN???

hello what about ROBIN??? howard stern's talkshow partner, robin, not only laughs at all of his dumb jokes but she definitely put in her own two cents on this one. i think she also deserves a douchebag decree.

love it!

love it!

"Douche Bag"

Excuse me but I am new to this site so you may have explained your use of the term "douche bag" before but I have always thought of it as another degrading term created by men.

Douchebag

Hi there!

Here at Bitch we stand firmly behind our use of the word "douchebag." Literal douchebags are not only harmful to women's bodies, they are also representative of the ways in which the Patriarchy has attempted to shame women and make us afraid of our own bodies. Boo! That's why we think it's a perfect word to call people who are doing the same thing, like Howard Stern and Robin Quivers, who are attempting to fat-shame Gabourey Sidibe.

For more info on our use of the term, check out this post: http://bitchmagazine.org/post/hear-ye-hear-ye-the-douchebag-decree-decree

Thanks!

____________
Kelsey Wallace, contributor

Ask me about our Comments Policy!

Why give this idiot any attention?

Once again Stern has made the news by acting like the self-absorbed, shallow, mocking, prepubescent white boy moron we've always known him to be. There is no surprise in his commentary whatsoever. And, for Robin Quivers to sit idly by and guffaw with him is par-for-the-course. She has her own weight issues as illustrated by her recent foray into (weeks of ingesting nothing except a lemon-juice and cayenne-pepper elixir) Master Cleanse." She certainly isn't going to call out Mr Stern when she's probably in agreement with him over the weight hatred spew he's grown accustomed to serving his listeners.

Hatred disguised as truth-telling (Sidibe being overweight and unhealthy) is still hatred.

I am completely shocked

I am completely shocked by this - I don't think that the Douchebag Decree is a strong enough sanction for this man. Surely he deserves worse!

Stern and Quivers are Hypocrites

I find it interesting how he has recently been kind to Rosie O'Donnell (Who has consistently been very frank and honest about her lifelong weight issues) in order to recommend that she have her own Sirius/XM radio Channel, which debuted back in November (He used to trash her when she had her syndicated TV talk show from 1996-2002). But I have come to realize that in all his 35+ years in radio/TV he has not really changed at all. Robin Quivers is doing an unfortunate disservice to plus-size women, and women of color everywhere, for playing along his antics. Quivers, of all people, should know better than to mock the women who should be able to relate to her issues, but do not and will not because of her association with Stern.

I'm thinking Stern ought not

I'm thinking Stern ought not to open up the floor for making cheap shots at another person's appearance. For reasons why below the line of basic decency, look closely (or not so closely) at any picture of Howard Stern.

hypocrisy

What Whoopi gets wrong is that Stern absolutely has the same thing to say about morbidly obese men (such as John Candy) as he does Gabby. And the hypocrisy right here on this site is the outrage over his comments that don't come near to the mean-spiritedness and vitriol directed at women who are deemed "too thin" by supposed feminists.

While I agree that being emaciated should not be encouraged, I also feel that being morbidly obese should not be celebrated. Gabby should be celebrated for her lovely performance, but let's be honest- if she does not do something about her health, she'll be lucky to be alive in 10 years. She's not just overweight, she is dangerously obese for someone so young. Sterns comments were also taken quite out of context and he's generally said he appreciates her sense of humor and apparent good nature.

"I also feel that being

"I also feel that being morbidly obese should not be celebrated"

Who said anything about celebrating Gabby's weight? It shouldn't be celebrated or condenmed. Stern chose to attack Sidibe for one reason—he doesn't like how she looks. He makes it clear repeatedly in the most mean-spirited ways possible. It's disgusting, and pathetic for him to go on like that.

Take note: Opinions expressed are those of their respective authors, not necessarily those of Bitch. Dig?

What did Stern

have to say about John Candy? Did he say that John Candy didn't (or wouldn't) have a career besides one freak movie? Because obviously he would be wrong.

The problem with Stern's comment is that Gabby Sidibe's career IS an open question. She DOES face challenges. But on the other hand as Whoopi Goldberg said, people said the same things about herself. You can never predict the future for certain. Someone could write a part for Sidibe. Several years ago and even now people are saying that women past a certain age can't make it in Hollywood, but Meryl Streep is proving them wrong. Wide release parts are being offered to Streep and she is delivering.

But if people get the preconceived perception that she CAN'T do it just because of who she is, that will hurt her chances even more. And Stern's commentary reinforces that notion. He isn't just commenting on her future, he is actively hurting it, to the extent that he actually reinforces conventional wisdom.

Stern is definitely

Stern is definitely douchebag material. But you also have to acknowledge that his opinion in this case pretty much represents most of society or at least popular media. While, let's face it, Stern needs a Douchebag decree permantly stamped to his forehead, it's really the general douchebaggery of hollywood that pisses me off the most. As a black, plus sized woman, Gabby will undoubtedly be discriminated against in hollywood. And the View, honestly? We have to write roles for her? That is so not the way to go. Yes that might be the reality, that roles will need to be written to "fit" her but that's not a solution by any means. That just proves the there's no room for real diversity in hollywood when they have to make exceptions from the norm in order to find a place for her.

Either way Gabby still gets "othered", Howard Stern is just less politically correct in doing so.

Bitch

who the fuck are you talking about. you are the ugliest white skinny man i ever seen in the history of famous radio people. no she is not that attractive but who are you to talk about her like that you white bastard: ( BITCH

He says that about himself

He says that about himself all the time. However, he would defend your right to say so also.

on Stern

As if we have not already seen the downfall of moral turpitude in this country, which is perceived to be granted to us by the Declaration of Independence clause… in the pursuit of happiness, or its tainted version, freedom of expression, Howard Stern has become a blathering pundit of bumptious perversion. His mass media broadcast appeal to the lowest human behavior degrades every form of righteous preservation by demoralizing the sanctity of individual character and promulgates the perceived acceptability of perverse behavior. Spreading his notion of sexually degrading acceptability has and will continue the spiral weakening of the minds and beliefs of parental, organizational and individual responsibility, even of those that do not subscribe to his programming, rendering present and future generations morally inept. Stern’s apparent cowardice, hiding behind the first amendment right to free speech, coupled with his own moral weakness, along with the socially perceived significant traits of wealth and success, creates a swath of destruction substituting genuine human morals with perverse social tolerance.

Listen to Stern one time. Do

Listen to Stern one time. Do it and I guarantee your perspective of the man will change. He is a self-deprecating and totally self-aware man. He will admit when he is wrong unlike so many voices we hear on television and radio and he will also admit when he is unaware. Many in American media will just make up some BS so that they can sound informed. This woman is morbidly obese and in-fact will not have a career. It's a fact and it is the ugly truth. Don't blame him for delivering what so many are afraid to face. Get real. Stern is not a douche. He is a very thoughtful man, who sometimes has to play a character on the radio, but when Stern lets down his guard you can't help but fall in love with him. So again--- I challenge you to listen to him for a week. His show isn't overly political or decisive and honestly sometimes it's just simple commentary, but it has the ability to be brilliant. I'm a huge fan and I'll admit that I turn it off from time to time because it's over the top with vulgarity or sexuality, but that is very seldom. He's just like you. He is a father and a husband and worries about what every ones thinks of him. He is not a monster and although his comments weren't sugarcoated or politically correct regarding this actress, they were true. "Beauty is truth, truth beauty, that is all ye know on earth and all ye need to know." ba ba booey

THIS

THIS

And honestly, you guys picked

And honestly, you guys picked HIM as the douchiest guy, over other guys who are doing worse things, such as sexually assaulting people and discriminating against homosexuals? You guys really have your priorities straight.

^^ Agreed^^

I totally agree with you. I am an intelligent, independent, and a feminist and I love Howard!! I used to just generally hate him for being sexist and racist too. It wasn't until I *actually* listened to him that I was able to form an opinion and see that he isn't these things at all! He approaches these subjects about sex from a standpoint of mocking his own shallowness. And he is equally harsh on men, women, short, tall, fat, thin, black, white alike. The thing I really love about Howard, and the reason why I respect him, is that he was one of the first to really give certain subcultures a real voice in the mainstream media. He interviewed porn stars, sex workers, strippers, porn directors, nude models, etc and let them show that they are similar to us all. He showed the world how incredibly intelligent Jenna Jameson really is, and treats these people just like he treats the biggest A-list celeb that comes on his show. He brutally and apologetically stands up for the rights of people to live the lifestyle they want and he strongly supports gay rights, pro-choice issues, and pro-women issues. Absolutely he can be crude, and of course his humor isn't for everyone. But the guy genuinely isn't the sexist jerk he gets all too often labeled as being.

Pay Ratio Ruined It

I used to listen to Stern. He used to be funny, relevant, and at times even insightful. But part of the fun was hearing him push the extent of censors and decency.

Now he is on pay radio and can say anything he wants, it's actually kinda lame. You can pay your average pre-teen half as much and get the same show . . .

You liberal scumbags can say

You liberal scumbags can say what you want, why can't he?