Veteran weatherman Al Roker ripped into critics Sunday who suggested that NBC put him at risk to get good footage of Hurricane Ida.
Roker made an appearance on MSNBC’s “The Sunday Show” to give an update on the conditions in New Orleans, and he told anchor Jonathan Capehart that he had volunteered to be on location for coverage of the massive storm. (RELATED: Al Roker And Joe Biden Fist-Bumped During The Inauguration Parade)
“When you came on-air, Al, it was windy but it wasn’t as windy,” Capehart began, noting that Roker had moved from an earlier location because conditions had gotten more dangerous.
“We have video of your hit on ‘Meet the Press’ and what happened there. Let’s see you right there. I like to call it the Roker stance. Standing strong against the wind. But the water is lapping, slapping around and a certain point is going to come where the big water hits you,” Capehart continued.
“Folks on Twitter have been — well, first of all, why is NBC putting him out there? I volunteered to come out here. This is what I do,” Roker replied. “I’ve done this for 40 years, our crews, and we all make sure we’re safe, we’re not going to do something that puts ourselves in harm’s way. As much as I love the weather and I love NBC, I’m not going to risk my life for it.”
Roker went on to say to critics who might think him “too old” for such coverage, “Well, hey, guess what? Screw you!”
Capehart laughed out loud as Roker continued, “These young punks! I will come after them. I will drop them like a bag of dirt!”
A number of people criticized Roker’s coverage, asking whether it was necessary to put him at potential risk and suggesting that he was too old for that kind of on-location coverage.
Al Roker is almost 70 years old, why is this necessary https://t.co/mXw6VaQXzp
— philip lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) August 29, 2021
Afghanistan is complicated, tragic, and divisive. So let’s welcome the opportunity to unanimously condemn NBC for endangering Al Roker. So reckless and irresponsible.
— Larry Sabato (@LarrySabato) August 29, 2021
Get 67-year-old Al Roker out of the hurricane. pic.twitter.com/TGnCVzykE0
— Alex Salvi (@alexsalvinews) August 29, 2021
Roker’s response was simple: it was his idea.
For all those who were worried about me out on #lakepontchartrain covering #Ida a) I volunteered to do this. Part of the job. b) My crew and I were safe and we are back at our hotel and c) for those who think I’m too old to to be doing this, try and keep up pic.twitter.com/DctJBFKD0D
— Al Roker (@alroker) August 29, 2021
“For all those who were worried about me out on #lakepontchartrain covering #Ida a) I volunteered to do this. Part of the job. b) My crew and I were safe and we are back at our hotel and c) for those who think I’m too old to to be doing this, try and keep up,” he tweeted.