|Above, Erin Moran and Scot Baio.|
If there ever was a case of "foot-in-mouth-disease", the recent uproar over an interview that actor Scott Baio gave on the death of former co-star Erin Moran is it.
Initially, Baio posted a heartfelt condolence message on the passing of Moran on Twitter, but two days later, he gave an interview in which he said:
My thing is, I feel bad because her whole life, she was troubled, could never find what made her happy and content. For me, you do drugs or drink, you’re gonna die. I’m sorry if that’s cold, but God gave you a brain, gave you the will to live and thrive and you gotta take care of yourself.
This interview was given was before it was announced that Moran died of stage 4 cancer.
However, the damage was done and an uproar exploded over Baio's remarks.
If there is a "proper" time to pontificate on the cause of someone's demise, certainly it should be after the cause of death was actually determined and announced at the very least. Baio admitted that some media sources speculated that Moran died due to drugs and he relied on those stories. Still, waiting for things to become crystal clear before making such insensitive statements would have been the more prudent thing to do.
Still, he was much too blunt, he spoke too soon and was wrong in speaking before the facts came out. He put his foot into his mouth and he is being mercilessly pilloried over it.
Since then, Baio has been trying to explain his comments and walk them back. But there's a great many unforgiving people out there. This is definitely a hard lesson he's learning.