(Apparently I need to start a series of letters to celebrities, reminding them to watch their mouths…)
My Twitter feed just exploded in a round of “Wayne Brady, NOT funny! My child is beautiful!” from other mom-types. So I donned my investigative glasses and did Ye Olde Internet Search.
And found instantly what all the hullabaloo was about.
First, Wayne, I love you man. I have laughed until I cried at some of your antics on “Whose Line is it Anyway?” You are seriously funny and creative and have a great singing voice. And I’ll admit – Comedy Central Roasts are a guilty pleasure of mine. I know I shouldn’t laugh, but I do. At this point, I won’t be watching any more of them.
You went and crossed a line during the latest Comedy Central Roast. You made a joke about how ugly another comedian was – and then said that a beautiful little boy with Down Syndrome would be that ugly too when he was all grown up.
And quote –
“Now the thing is Jeff … these are all jokes, and I really like you. I really, really like you. But a lot of people hate you, especially Sarah Palin because you remind her of what Trig is going to look like when he’s 40.” (Story with clip here)
Why did you think you could get away with that? Because you were making fun of Sarah Palin by proxy and that’s okay? You were on a roast and anything goes? Do you know what the moms on my Twitter feed heard? “Your child with Down Syndrome is ugly.”
Is that what you were truly thinking? I doubt it. But that’s how it came across to many parents of all sorts of special needs children. Children who get made fun of on a daily basis for how they look, how they act, how they move. Whether you meant to or not, you became one of those people who make fun of our special kids.
Yeah, I know. It was a roast. You get to cross lines. But should you cross certain lines? The audience didn’t seem to think so. They actually booed the joke. Do you know why they booed the joke? Because all of his mother’s politics aside, Trig Palin is a child. An innocent child who deserves the same amount of respect as any other child. Not the punchline for an ugly joke.
As they would say here in Ireland – it’s shameful, that’s what it is. Just shameful.
To learn more about Down Syndrome and how to support the families who have one of these precious people in their lives, please go to the National Down Syndrome Society…