BURBANK (CBSLA.com) — Comedian Joan Rivers has never had a problem expressing her opinions, however controversial they may be, and the TV personality made it known Tuesday that Costco was her latest target.
The Tony-nominated actress protested outside a Costco in Burbank – complete with a bullhorn – because she claims the bulk retailer has banned her new book from its shelves.
“My book has been banned from Costco which is ridiculous because they’re funny,” Rivers told CBS2/KCAL9 Tuesday, saying the retailer took issue with two fake testimonials printed on the back cover. The mock reviews of the book, which she penned under the names Wilt Chamberlain and Marie Antoinette, both contain curse words.
“I Hate Everyone… Starting With Me” has been on the New York Times best sellers list for six weeks and is carried by other large retailers, but Rivers says it wasn’t about getting her book into the bulk goods giant for the money.
“This is an anti-First Amendment freedom of speech issue. I thought Costco buyers should have right to decide whether to read it. They should not censor our books,” Rivers said.
Costco customers bought 100 copies of the book from Rivers before the store manager and police escorted her out as she proceeded to handcuff herself to a shopping cart.
“She was signing books, saying crazy stuff, looked like she was protesting,” said James Clifton, who was shopping there with his wife, Samantha.
“It’s kind of cool. I only get to see her on TV,” Samantha said.
Although Rivers is known for her no-holds-barred humor, she said she’s serious about this fight.
“This is company sells [toilet paper] by the pallet and condoms by thousands and they won’t sell Joan Rivers’ book,” the author said.
Costco in Burbank referred CBS2 to its corporate offices for comment, but the company has not yet responded.
Burbank police confirmed that they were called by Costco management to ask Rivers to go outside.