TODAY | August 22, 2013
>>> morning for a tweet that a lot of people thought was insensitive or perhaps even worse . nbc's kristen dahlgren is here with details on this. kristen, good morning to you.
>> good morning. the tweet has the twitterverse in a tail spin . now he's facing a wave of backlash.
>> i mean, are you a slow learner ?
>> no, no, no, no.
>> reporter: from the couch to the hot seat. the tweet sent from dr. phil 's account tuesday night read, quote, if a girl is drunk, is it okay to have sex with her? reply yes or no to @drphil #teensaccused. although the tweet was deleted shortly after it was posted.
>> the tweet sounded like it was an advertise am. it came across completely wrong, completely dry and completely offensive.
>> reporter: while its phrasing has angered many, even sparking a petition on change.org, others have come to his defense.
>> it is a serious issue. for them to raise it as a subject on their show, i don't see what the problem is. it should be discussed.
>> reporter: dr. phil is hardly the first celebrity to face backlash over a questionably worded tweet . from ashton kutcher to designer kenneth cole making light of egypt's arab spring. and while he hasn't spoken publicly about the incident, dr. phil 's show released a lengthy statement wednesday saying in part, quote, this tweet was intended to evoke discussion into a very serious show topic. this was not a personal post and dr. phil deleted it the second he saw it. it was clearly ill-advised.
>> when you're a doctor, you're trusted. he has the face on tv. he has that recognition. he has responsibility to be politically correct. he really did not do that this time.
>> the wording of the statement suggests that dr. phil was one to personally delete the tweet but not the one to send it out in the first place. this whole statement can be found on our website today.com.