UPDATE: Spencer's employer released another statement. Remember how they did this before, when Spencer was dropping the c-word, among other things? Union Pacific responded to that on July 6. Here's a statement released August 7 about Spencer's child porn joke:
"Due to the volume of feedback Union Pacific has received from the public about Spencer Clawson's August 5 comments on the CBS reality show Big Brother 15, the company wants to reiterate that it has taken all the action it can under the Collective Bargaining Agreement until Mr. Clawson is released from the show. Mr. Clawson took an unpaid leave of absence to participate on Big Brother 15. Union Pacific has notified law enforcement of Mr. Clawson's August 5 comments."
It's pretty similar to the previous statement except for that end part about notifying law enforcement. Yikes.
And the police in Spencer’s town of Conway, Arkansas followed up. Police Chief AJ Gary told TMZ, "Due to the nature of the comments, our department moved quickly to look into the matter. At this time we haven't found that any criminal act was committed." Even though Spencer was just joking, it’s good to know police acted quickly. Pedophilia is no joke. Maybe now that will sink in.
Can you imagine being Spencer, Aaryn or GinaMarie — sitting in the BB house with no idea that your life is basically shattered outside the game?
The race to the bottom continues on Big Brother 15!
Just when you think it can't get worse than the racism, sexism, general bigotry, GinaMarie calling Candice such a "degenerate" her own mom didn't want her, and Amanda joking that Jessie should have her teeth knocked out and gang banged (then killed), Spencer is here to joke about kiddie porn.
As BB15 Spice broke it all down, on August 5 on the live feeds, Spencer, Amanda and Andy were talking as McCrae took a shower. They were apparently chatting about how easy Amanda's spray tan washed off, then Spencer said, into McCrae's mic (pretending to be McCrae), "I like to beat off to child porn. Did I ever tell y'all about that?" Andy responded, "Oh God." Spencer continued, "I love it. Beating off to child porn is my favorite thing there is. ... I love it when they're around 3 or 4 years old. My favorite ones are when you can tell they're in a basement." Andy changed the subject.
You can watch it all play out in this TMZ clip from the live feeds.
It's not like Spencer was coming out as a pedophile, he was apparently joking into McCrae's mic as a way to make it seem like that's what McCrae was confessing. Still, this is the problem with joking about something so appalling: There is nothing funny about pedophilia. This would be a lousy joke even if Spencer was just with his annoying friends — or at a comedy club — but these fools are being taped for a TV show watched by millions. Now they are semi-famous and one of them is going to be semi-rich and this is what they talk about behind closed doors. Great.
The live feeds are watched by many fans, and they had immediate reactions to Spencer’s comments. Most shared disgust but some defended Spencer as just telling an off-color joke. Ian Terry, who won last year's BB14, tweeted, "Hmmm, something tells me that Spencer doesn't do any of those things. Something about his facetious tone as he said it... #BB15."
Ian took some crap for writing that, so he replied with a long explanation, saying, "I realize that I sent a tweet out earlier that makes it seem like I was defending Spencer's comments. Let me clear that up now: I don't support what he said in any way. However, I do have a few things to say about the whole controversy...." He went on to list four points, reiterating that Spencer was "clearly being facetious." He recognizes that it was a bad joke, but it was a joke. Ian continued, "I think a lot of people are making a big deal about this because Spencer is an overweight, middle-aged man. I can't imagine that if some young, attractive person made these jokes that we'd be accusing them of being a pedophile."
But when young, attractive Aaryn makes racist comments she's not only called out for it, she's CBS's resident scapegoat instead of calling out the other people (GinaMarie, Amanda, etc.) who have made similarly awful statements. It's like there's only room for one "bad guy" or else America would turn on the real bad guys — CBS and The Powers That Be for casting this sorry lot. Besides, Spencer is only 31. That's hardly middle-aged!
Ian also added, "I think Big Brother is a great show. I'd hate to see a lot of fans that like it as much as I do stop watching simply because some yokel made a tasteless joke. I'd also hate to see said yokel's life destroyed by rumors of sexual deviancy simply because of this tasteless joke." It’s not like everyone thinks Spencer is a sexual predator; plenty of fans get that he was joking. But if his life changes for the worse, don’t blame fans who don’t get the joke, blame the person who made the comments.
What do you think? Does Spencer deserve the backlash or are angry fans being oversensitive? And is there anyone worth supporting this season?
Catch up on some of the HOH, MVP, and POV spoilers from so far this week.