Whoopi Goldberg, co-host of the ABC talk show The View, made a controversial statement on Wednesday when she said that the reality singing competition show American Idol launched “the downfall of society.”
Goldberg made the comments during a discussion about the Netflix documentary Anna Nicole Smith: The Untold Story. The documentary explores the life and death of the late model and actress, who died of an accidental overdose in 2007.
During the discussion, Goldberg said that she believes that the rise of reality television shows like American Idol has contributed to the decline of society.
“You have ‘Basketball Wives,’ you have the ‘Housewives’ of whatever, all the Bravo shows, giving you the impression that you’re doing something wrong because you’re living your life.”
“People watch these shows because they make them feel better,” Goldberg continued. “I think that we, as a society, love to watch stuff to judge folks,” Goldberg said. “I always thought that the beginning of the downfall of society was with, um, what’s the name of that show?”
She then turned to executive producer Brian Teta for an assist. “I always tell you that,” she said.
In response, Teta supplied “ABC’s ‘American Idol’?” prompting immediate laughter from both the audience and the other women at the table.
Goldberg went on to say that she believes that American Idol and other reality shows have created a culture of “instant gratification.”
“We want to see people fail,” she said. “We want to see people get humiliated. We want to see people fall on their faces. And I think that that’s what’s led to this downfall of society.”
“Once we gave people the ability to judge other people, I think we ran amuck with it,” Goldberg elaborated. “And it’s gone out of control.”
“They invited the public to decide who their person was,” she added. “And I feel once we did that, it began us in a cycle which we have not — did you really just do that?”
Goldberg’s comments sparked a debate on social media, with some people agreeing with her and others disagreeing.
‘American Idol’ launched ‘the downfall of society’: Whoopi Goldberg
It’s a no from Whoopi, dawg. “The View” co-host Whoopi Goldberg, 67, boldly stated Wednesday on the ABC talk show that “American Idol” was the “beginning of the downfall of society.” While the women of the … pic.twitter.com/iMgVXoogwi
— Dr.LyndaBarnes (@MrsBarnesII) May 24, 2023