Let me just get this part out of the way. Michael Richards, aka Kramer, was totally out of line and his actions are inexcusable. He wasn't even approaching funny when he verbally attacked several black audience members last Friday after they began heckling him during his stand up act. He should be embarrassed, ashamed, apologetic and whatever other remorseful adjectives you'd care to tack on.
That being said, and wrong as he may be, why in the hell do "hecklers" Kyle Doss and Frank McBride, feel that they're entitled to financial compensation?
Enter high-profile attorney, Gloria Allred, now representing Doss and McBride in their...claim? against Richards.
According to Access Hollywood, Allred has stated,
"It is not enough to go on television and say 'I'm sorry.' We are issuing a challenge to Michael Richards."
The "challenge"? To meet face to face with her clients before a judge. Why?
"We want the retired judge to make a recommendation on how much Michael Richards should pay to compensate our clients."
sigh....And so we have another case of "how much will it take to make me happy?"
The indignity, the humiliation, the pain, the suffering. You just can't put a price on these things. But you can sure as hell take a shot at it. And since we all know that Michael Richards is a multi-millionaire it had better be a seven-figure shot.
I've grown so tired of the "somebody owes me" attitude of our society. As if throwing money in response to a situation makes the act not quite so terrible. People say and do horrible, cruel things every single day. Entitlement in the form of a financial windfall should not be our common response to these cruelties. In response to physical negligence, yes, but for being an asshole? There's not enough money in the world to indemnify all the assholes out there.
And please don't tell me that there aren't thousands of people out there who would kill to have been "attacked" in such a manner simply for the opportunity to collect "compensation". Think about how many people view being involved in a minor auto accident as the equivalent of winning the lottery. I've worked in that industry and know of which I speak.
Richards was wrong. Period. Society will punish him by deciding whether or not to allow his career to continue. If not, he'll become a hermit, squirreled away with his millions and his regret.