Dr. Phil ‘drunk girl’ sex tweet sparks outrage

The controversial tweet, via @DrPhil/Twitter
The controversial tweet posted on the Twitter account @DrPhil.

Celebrity psychologist Dr. Phil McGraw is enduring tremendous backlash for a tweet he posted, then quickly deleted, Tuesday that asked his 1.1 million followers to give a “yes” or “no” response on a question that, to many, suggested rape. 

The tweet, posted at 5:49 p.m. on Tuesday, asked: “If a girl is drunk, is it OK to have sex with her? Reply yes or no to @drphil #teensaccused.”

In typical Twitter fashion, hundreds of offended tweeters flung angry responses and jokes at McGraw. Now, a petition on Change.org with nearly 1,400 signatures demands an apology from McGraw as well as a show dedicated to rape awareness.

“As a former college sexual assault activist who taught about rape and consent, and friend to many survivors, I am shocked and appalled by this question,” wrote Carmen Rios, the petition’s creator. “There is no question, Dr Phil: Rape is rape.”

The petition demands McGraw produce a show that “shines a light on survivors of rape and sexual assault and begin a national conversation about the specifics of consent – which includes not raping people while they are drunk or otherwise unable to consent.”

A rep for McGraw released a statement defending, explaining and apologizing for the “ill-advised” tweet:

“This Tweet was intended to evoke discussion leading into a very serious show topic based upon a recent news story, hence the #teensaccused label. It was a poll question, not a statement or a joke. As he has maintained over many years, Dr. Phil believes that the position of those incapacitated in any fashion — be it drugs, alcohol, age or mental illness — cannot and do not have the capacity to give their consent to anything, especially sex, which could have life-changing repercussions.”

“This was a research post in preparation for a show, not a personal post, and Dr. Phil deleted it the second he saw it. It was clearly ill-advised. We sincerely apologize that it suggested anything other than what was intended: data gathering. As you can imagine, Dr. Phil is very upset that this happened.”

Follow Morgan Rousseau on Twitter: @MetroMorgan
Follow Metro Boston on Twitter: @MetroBOS



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Actor Tracy Morgan wasn't wearing seatbelt in June…

By Jonathan Stempel(Reuters) - Actor and comedian Tracy Morgan and others in his limousine were not wearing seat belts when their vehicle was struck by…

National

Connected cars: Is AT&T leaving Verizon in its…

By Marina Lopes and Bernie WoodallWASHINGTON/DETROIT (Reuters) - Verizon Communications, the No.1 U.S. wireless carrier known for its widespread coverage, is falling behind its biggest…

Local

Grand jury begins hearing evidence in Eric Garner…

A grand jury began hearing evidence Monday relating to the death of Eric Garner while in police custody in July. Garner, 43, of Staten Island,…

Local

Mayor announces plan for solar panels at city…

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the planned installation of 24 new solar panels at city schools on Monday morning. The panels, a $28 million investment,…

Going Out

Taste what Lower Manhattan is cooking at today's…

The Lower Manhattan food scene has changed a lot in three years, which you can taste first hand when the neighborhood's food festival returns. On…

Television

Review: 'Selfie' tries to coast on the charm…

"Selfie" offers cute leads and some good jokes, but focuses too much on a vague distaste for social media.

Movies

Review: Jason Reitman's 'Men, Women & Children' is…

Jason Reitman's "Men, Women & Children" takes a hysterical and melodramatic look at disconnection in the digital age, turning strong actors into zombies.

Television

TV watch list, Monday, Sept. 29: 'Castle,' 'Mom'…

Tune in for the season premieres of "Castle," "Mom" and "NCIS: Los Angeles."

NFL

Ryan Quigley making a big impact for Jets…

Ryan Quigley, now in his second year as the Jets punter, had an exceptional afternoon with six punts for an average of 51.7 yards per punt.

NFL

3 positives to take from Jets loss to…

The Jets suffered another loss Sunday — 24-17 to the Lions — but the reason why it hurts so much for Jets fans is that…

MLB

Joe Girardi not confident David Robertson will return…

David Robertson was as seamless as anyone could be replacing Mariano Rivera as he converted 39 saves, with a 3.08 ERA and 96 strikeouts in 64 1/3 innings.

NBA

Carmelo Anthony preaches patience with new coach, offense

While star forward Carmelo Anthony said he’s “enthusiastic” and “optimistic” for the upcoming season, he still wants everyone — from within the locker room and…

Education

How to ace your private school interview

Getting ready for a private school interview can be daunting for many, most of whom might never have been in an interview situation before. We’ve…

Education

5 questions parents should ask while visiting private…

It can be hard to know what to look for when searching for a new school for your child. Parents considering several different schools can…

Education

3 ways to save money on college application…

With the average high school student applying to 5 or 6 schools, hefty application and test score fees can add up quickly. We’ve compiled some…

Education

Nap rooms: The latest college campus trend

College is a time filled with new experiences (and lots of schoolwork), leaving little time for students to get a good night’s rest. University of…