Is Ken Jennings racist? 'Jeopardy' star dubbed 'biased hateful person' after apology for 'insensitive' tweets

Is Ken Jennings racist? 'Jeopardy' star dubbed 'biased hateful person' after apology for 'insensitive' tweets
Ken Jennings (Getty Images)

When 'Jeopardy' contestant and 'Jeopardy: Greatest Of All Time' winner Ken Jennings was announced as the first in a series of guest hosts following the death of Alex Trebek earlier this year, viewers called out the choice due to Jennings' old tweets that were dubbed "racist" and "insensitive". In a series of tweets, Jennings has now issued an apology for the tweets that came under fire. However, the apology is not going over smoothly on social media. 

Earlier this year, when Jennings was announced as the first host to take over 'Jeopardy' following Trebek's death, fans of the show pointed to his history of tweeting racist, ableist and offensive jokes. In May this year, Jennings tweeted controversially at a time when tensions were high in the country over the death of George Floyd, "I am NOT a racist. Did I try to get a black man arrested just because he asked me to leash my dog? Yes. But look, there are a LOT of races I would have done that to." Fans also called him out when Jennings tweeted, "Nothing sadder than a hot person in a wheelchair."



Now, it seems that Jennings is responding to the furor that erupted, writing in a series of tweets, "Hey, I just wanted to own up to the fact that over the years on Twitter, I've definitely tweeted some unartful and insensitive things. Sometimes they worked as jokes in my head and I was dismayed to see how they read on screen. In the past, I'd usually leave bad tweets up just so they could be dunked on. At least that way they could lead to smart replies and even advocacy. Deleting them felt like whitewashing a mistake. But I think that practice may have given the impression I stand by every failed joke I've ever posted here. Not at all!"




He continued, "Sometimes I said dumb things in a dumb way and I want to apologize to people who were (rightfully!) offended. It wasn't my intention to hurt anyone, but that doesn't matter: I screwed up, and I'm truly sorry. If 2020 has taught us anything, it's that we should be kinder to one another. I look forward to heading into 2021 with that in mind."



However, folks on social media are not accepting his apology. One user tweeted, "No, not unartful. Hateful. Bigoted. Biased. Racist. You do not get to hide behind "jokes" that did not work. You are a biased hateful person. I will not support any advertisers on Jeopardy should @ABCNetwork go through with you being the host. Wallow in it." Another wrote, "Im seeing too many ppl who claim to fight for social justice and equality accepting this BS forced apology on disabled peoples behalf. Its wild how yall are always ok with people like ken admitting he thinks disabled ppl like me are pitiful inferior ppl. like were human failures." One user wrote, "Nice try, but nah. If @Jeopardy names you as successor, well that’s there call, but they’ll be a sizable drop in ratings in hopes that moves them to dump you."




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