A heated discussion on “The Talk” has ignited an investigation by CBS.
The network announced they are doing an “internal review” following Sharon Osbourne’s tense exchange with fellow co-host Sheryl Underwood over Piers Morgan’s controversial remarks about Meghan Markle.
"We are committed to a diverse, inclusive and respectful workplace. All matters related to the Wednesday episode of 'The Talk' are currently under internal review," CBS said in a statement, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
During the segment on Wednesday’s episode of the daytime talk show, Osbourne claimed she was being labeled a racist for voicing support for Morgan, who criticized Markle for her bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey. Morgan accused Markle of lying about the royal family's racism and her own mental health struggles.
"Did I like everything he said? Did I agree with what he said? No," Osbourne said on “The Talk.” "It's not my opinion ... I support him for his freedom of speech, and he's my friend."
Underwood questioned Osbourne’s defense.
“What would you say to people who may feel that while you’re standing by your friend, it appears you gave validation or safe haven to something that he has uttered that is racist, even if you don’t agree?” Underwood said.
Osbourne then demanded Underwood provide examples of Morgan being racist.
"I will ask you again Sheryl, I've been asking you during the break and I'm asking you again, and don't try and cry 'cause if anyone should be crying it should be me," Osbourne said. "Educate me! Tell me when you have heard him say racist things."
Underwood explained by saying, "it is not the exact words of racism, it's the implication and the reaction to it."
"To not want to address that because she is a Black woman, and to try to dismiss it or to make it seem less than what it is, that's what makes it racist," Underwood continued. "But right now, I'm talking to a woman I believe is my friend and I don't want anybody here to watch this and think we are attacking you for being racist."
Osbourne later issued an apology for her comments during the intense discussion.
“After some reflection, after sitting with your comments & sitting with my heart, I would like to address the discussion on The Talk this past Wednesday,” the 68-year-old wrote in a statement posted to Twitter. “I have always been embraced with so much love & support from the black community & I have deep respect & love for the black community.”
“To anyone of color that I offended and/or to anyone that feels confused or let down by what I said, I am truly sorry. I panicked, felt blindsided, got defensive & allowed my fear & horror of being accused of being racist take over,” she continued. “There are very few things that hurt my heart more than racism so to feel associated with that spun me fast. I am not perfect, I am still learning like the rest of us & will continue to learn, listen and do better.”
While CBS is looking into the matter, Osbourne has since said she felt “blindsided” by the network for making Morgan’s comments a last-minute topic on the show.
"I blame the network for it," Osbourne told Variety on Friday. "I was blindsided, totally blindsided by the whole situation. In my 11 years, this was the first time I was not involved with the planning of the segment."