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Kathy Griffin sounds off on the anniversary of her infamous photo

Kathy Griffin sounds off on the anniversary of her infamous photo
[Photo: Mel Melcon/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images]

Kathy Griffin has taken a lot of photos over the years, but for the rest of her life only one of them can be immediately identified as that photo. It’s the photo in which she appears to be clutching Donald Trump’s severed head; the photo that changed her life. Even though she already broke her silence about the notorious photo months ago, Griffin still has a lot to say about it.

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On the eve of the photo’s anniversary, Griffin wrote an epic Twitter thread about her experience once it spread online as a warning about what happens when a president with authoritarian leanings unleashes his ire on a private citizen.

Griffin starts off by explaining the intention behind her photo, which was quickly drowned out by assassination talk once it landed online. As she tells it, the photo was meant to draw attention to Trump’s sexism–specifically, his comments about Megyn Kelly.

Once the photo started to gain traction beyond what Griffin had (perhaps naively) anticipated, she deleted it and taped a video apology. According to her, the apology helped assuage some of the vitriol she’d begun to incur. At least until the following day, when the president tweeted about her. Messages of condemnation from Melania Trump and Donald Trump Jr. would follow.

Griffin goes on to describe how the president’s condemnation affected her life. She lost all her regular TV gigs, like CNN’s New Year’s Eve show, and ceased being invited on programs as a guest. People called bomb threats into comedy clubs she’d booked, causing the owners to cancel her shows. She became the subject of a federal investigation. All because of a bloody photo.

As Griffin states multiple times throughout the long thread, the reason she is writing about her experience now is to warn others who are neither wealthy or famous about what could happen upon getting on the presidential shitlist.

By the end of the thread, even some of the prominent voices who had been critical of Griffin’s photo–like former Clinton advisor Philippe Reines, were swayed. Read the whole thing here.

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