JERRY SPRINGER: I KNOW MY TV SHOW IS BAD! BAD! BAD!

Published on: July 25, 2002

TV Guide recently named "The Jerry Springer Show" the worst show in the 50-year history of television. Asked to comment on the dubious award, Jerry agreed to pen his thoughts exclusively for ENQUIRER readers.

BY JERRY SPRINGER

"The Jerry Springer Show" IS stupid! We're not out there touting it as having redeeming social value. It's silly TV.

I don't watch it. I have to live it once already when we're taping each show. Asking me to watch it when I get home would be unfair. After all, I've got some taste!

I don't produce the show, and I don't come up with the ideas for the show. I'm hired to host a show about outrageous people -- moms who steal their daughters' boyfriends, moms who want their daughters to be hookers, cheating husbands. It's not always pretty!

When The ENQUIRER asked me to respond to the TV Guide piece, I think it was expected that I would rally to the show's defense and point out the many redeeming social qualities and important issues we bring to the airwaves each day.

Let's get real!

Being named the worst show in television history was not unexpected. But as stupid as the show is, we must be doing something right. Millions of people around the world watch it. We're in 52 countries, and in terms of current shows, not reruns, it's probably the most-watched show on the planet.

People watch "The Jerry Springer Show" because it's entertainment. For an hour a day, people can escape from whatever's troubling them. People like it and that's why it's stayed on the air for 12 years.

I can't defend the show as much more than entertainment. But at the same time, I've never run away from criticism of the show -- and I will go to my grave saying that it does, indeed, deserve to be on the air.

Many of the people on our show are from what used to be called the other side of the tracks. They're not all beautiful and thin and moneyed. But they're people!

I think a reason some people get upset with the show is that they're not used to seeing this kind of behavior. But I tell people that if they're going to be angry about the show, be angry about the behavior, not the fact that the show is on the air.

No one says we should take the news off the air because some of it is shocking.

My philosophy is that the more people see of human behavior, the better they'll be able to deal with it in all its forms, and the better we'll all be able to accept our many differences.

Like I say, I'm prepared to take criticism for "The Jerry Springer Show." But I'm not prepared to say that a show like mine shouldn't be on television. I am prepared to say, "Hey, if you don't like it, don't watch it."

I don't!