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CBS censors racial slurs on ‘Big Brother’

It was the most memorable speech in "Big Brother" history, but fans didn't hear all of it.
/ Source: The Associated Press

It was the most memorable speech in "Big Brother" history, but fans didn't hear all of it.

Television viewers watching the "Big Brother 11" eviction episode Thursday only heard part of contestant Chima Simone's petition to stay on the voyeuristic CBS reality show.

Host Julie Chen later called it "the most memorable last plea speech we've ever heard."

But the audio cut out right as the 32-year-old freelance journalist referenced a derogatory term for people of Mexican descent that fellow nominee Braden Bacha, a 28-year-old model-actor, had used against two other contestants. Bacha's use of the term was also edited out.

Also censored was Simone saying that Bacha had used a sexually insulting word to describe host Chen, who also co-hosts "The Early Show."

Bacha was eliminated; Simone saved.

CBS said the statements were removed from the broadcast because they were offensive and did not meet the network's standards. Gay slurs slung by contestant Jeff Schroeder during an argument on Tuesday's episode were also left on the cutting room floor. The only place viewers could hear the heated words was on the show's live streaming Internet feed.

The network said in a statement Friday that "any views or opinions expressed in personal commentary by a houseguest appearing on 'Big Brother,' either on any live feed from the house or the broadcast, are those of the individuals speaking and do not represent the views or opinions of CBS or the producers of the program."

For 11 seasons, "Big Brother" has isolated contestants — or houseguests, as they're referred to on the show — from the outside world. They live under constant surveillance on a soundstage constructed to look like a house. Once a week, the contestants vote to evict each other in hopes of being the last houseguest standing and winning the $500,000 grand prize.

On Showtime 2's "Big Brother After Dark," an uncensored and unedited live broadcast of what's happening inside the house for three hours each night, Simone said the producers told her that her speech was censored. She also said she confronted producers about editing out the slurs.

"I said, I don't think it's fair because I don't think they showed when it first was said," Simone told her fellow houseguests during "Big Brother After Dark" following Thursday's live eviction episode on CBS. "And I was like, 'If someone's a racist, they should be portrayed as one. You shouldn't edit it to make them look good.'"

"Big Brother" has a history of contestants who spew controversial slurs. Ninth season winner Adam Jasinski was fired from the United Autism Foundation after using an offensive word to refer to autistic children. Eighth season contestant Amber Siyavus ignited a firestorm outside the "Big Brother" house when she said Jewish people tend to be "really money-hungry" and "selfish."