The controversial comedian Jeffrey Ross has defended his decision to make a joke about the recent shootings in Aurora, Denver. Ross cracked the joke, which was a jibe at the Hollywood actor Seth Green, during a 'Comedy Central Roast of Roseanne' for the legendary comedian Roseanne Barr. During his skit, Ross addressed Seth Green and cracked a joke that inferred that he looked like James Holmes, the man who was responsible for the massacre at a Denver movie theatre, during a screening of Dark Knight Rises.
"Seth, congratulations," said Ross. "This is actually a great night for you," Ross said. "You haven't gotten this much attention since you shot all those people in Aurora. ... I'm kidding. You are not like James Holmes. At least he did something in a movie theater that people remember!" According to NBC News' Entertainment column, the audience let out a collective gasp but Ross remains unapologetic about his decision to include the joke in his routine, though he acknowledges that he "crossed a line."
Ross told Nbc News "I think that this particular roast. in these particular times we are in. it is important to exercise freedom of speech. Comedians are apologizing a lot. I am not saying that is right or wrong. But it scares me when I start second guessing myself. So I wanted to put it out there and remind people what America is about. and on some level, what the roasts are about." The show's producer, Joan Larsen has confirmed that the joke will not be included in the telecast of the event, which airs on August 12, 2012.