What's behind the reaction to weatherman's slur
What is surprising to many is that the antique Southern anti-black slur, coon, is often substituted for King in the name of the civil rights icon Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
But many African-Americans are familiar with exactly that swap: Martin Luther Coon Boulevard, Martin Luther Coon Park, Martin Luther Coon Day, Martin Luther...
In fact, despite what many Americans assume, King is not universally respected or admired. Thirty-five years after Ronald Reagan signed the bill making King's birthday a federal holiday, there are those who still resist it.
In the firestorm that engulfed social media, people have rushed both to condemn Kappell and to defend him and criticize his station for firing him.
Would-be linguists have weighed in on both sides. One side saying Kappell either intentionally used the phrase, or that he slipped only in the time and place that he said it, but it must have been a part of his regular vocabulary.
"wowww that video. he definitely says that all the time, which is why it slipped out on air," said Twitter user @notmuchelse.
"Are you kidding me? That's one of the dumbest things I've ever heard. Say 'King' and 'Junior' 5 times fast and tell me what happens," responded another Twitter user with the handle @JaredG_13_.