Samantha Armytage, a host of the show, asked Griffin about the photo.
“Even Democrats said it was out of line, I get that comedy is about pushing the boundaries… but do you not agree that that picture holding up a severed head — I know it’s a mask covered in tomato sauce — but do you not accept that was a little bit over the line?” Armytage asked.
Griffin responded: “Stop acting like my little picture is more important than talking about the actual atrocities that the president of the United States is committing. So the picture happened, the outrage was ridiculous, I made an apology, and now in light of all the crazy stuff that he and this administration are doing… He’s unhinged.”
Griffin initially apologized in a video posted to Instagram on May 30, in which she said, “I beg for your forgiveness. I went too far. I made a mistake and I was wrong.”
Despite the apology, the next day she was fired as co-host of CNN‘s New Year’s Eve Celebration. Her co-host, Anderson Cooper, had already tweeted his opposition to the photo. “For the record, I am appalled by the photo shoot Kathy Griffin took part in,” he said. “It is clearly disgusting and completely inappropriate.”.
She apologized again at a news conference on June 2, at which Griffin’s attorney Lisa Bloom accused Trump and his family of “using their power to target her,” as reported by CNN.
When Griffin spoke, she said: “What’s happening to me has never happened in this great country. A sitting president of the U.S. … is personally trying to ruin my life forever.”
But she ended on a humorous note. “I’m going to make fun of him more now,” she said.
As for the controversial controversial picture, it was a collaboration with photographer Tyler Shields.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Shields explained his motivation for the picture.
“For me, presidents are symbols,” he said. “They’re symbols. They reflect some people’s ideals and they reflect the opposite of some other people’s ideals. Right now, this guy is the opposite of a lot of people’s ideals. But also, there’s a lot of people that think he’s great. That’s their own opinion, their own idea. Again, I can’t sit here and tell you that someone is not allowed to have their opinion. That’s why I’m allowed to make this art. For me, that’s more what this is about.”