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‘Jeopardy’ Winner Denies Making Racist Hand Gesture After Over 500 Former Players Demand Apology

"Jeopardy!" winner Kelly Donohue denied making a racist hand gesture after winning three games, but former players are demanding an apology.

A truly ridiculous controversy is happening in the “Jeopardy!” world right now. More than 500 former contestants are demanding an apology after show winner Kelly Donohue flashed a hand gesture that they claim is racist. 

Scandal On ‘Jeopardy!’

It all started when Kelly Donohue, a contestant who enjoyed a four-game run on the show in which he won three of them, flashed what some social media users saw as a white power symbol on his final episode. 

Others, however, pointed out that Donohoe was just trying to signify that he had won three games, as he had shown his tally in every prior episode he played on. 

This didn’t stop people from losing their minds, however.

Former Contestants Want Apology

On Wednesday night, about 500 former “Jeopardy” contestants signed an open letter slamming the show’s producers for allowing this act of “racism” to take place and for not editing it out. 

“This gesture was not a clear-cut symbol for the number three,” they wrote. “He held his thumb and forefinger together with his other three fingers extended and palm facing inward, and he tapped his chest. This, whether intentional or not, resembled very closely a gesture that has been coopted by white power groups, alt right groups, and an anti-government group that calls itself the Three Percenters.”

The players went on to attack “Jeopardy!” producers for not editing out Donohue’s correct response of “gypsy” to a clue as well. They were claiming that it’s a racist term that perpetuates harmful stereotypes about the Romani people.

“As people whose lives have been largely beneficially impacted by this show and its community, we really hope to see a statement and a disavowal of both of this week’s events, and we would like to see ‘Jeopardy!’ address Kelly’s behavior,” the letter continued. “We know that contestants sign morals and ethics-related agreements when they prepare to appear on the show, and we would ask the production team to evaluate this situation within that framework.”

Related: ‘Jeopardy’ Has Banned Certain Wagers Because They Are Deemed Racist, Satanic, And Sexual

Donohue Defends Himself

On Thursday morning, Donohue desperately tried to defend himself on Facebook saying that this is a “terrible misunderstanding” and that he condemns “white supremacy and racism of any kind.”

“I’m truly horrified with what has been posted about me on social media,” Donohue wrote. “I absolutely, unequivocally condemn white supremacy and racism of any kind. People who know me personally know that I am not a racist, but for the public at large it bears repeating: I am not a racist and I reject and condemn white supremacy and all forms of bigotry for the evil they are.”

“It’s shameful to me to think anyone would try to use the stage of Jeopardy! to advance or promote such a disgusting agenda,” he added. “During the taping of my fourth episode, I was simply raising three fingers to mark my 3rd win. There was nothing more I was trying to indicate. I deeply regret this terrible misunderstanding. I never meant to hurt a soul and I assure you I am no friend of racists or white supremacists.”

I’m truly horrified with what has been posted about me on social media. I absolutely, unequivocally condemn white…

Posted by Kelly Donohue on Thursday, April 29, 2021

Related: Jean Trebek Remembers Alex In First Interview Since ‘Jeopardy!’ Host’s Death

This Scandal Will Likely Follow Donohue

This just goes to show how far our society has fallen into this hole of political correctness.

From Donohue’s prior episodes, it’s clear that he was just trying to show his tally of wins. It can’t be denied that the “two” he flashed with his fingers resembles the way he flashed “three.”

The former “Jeopardy!” contestants who signed the letter have way too much time on their hands.

They should probably try finding a hobby instead of misconstruing the benign actions of an innocent man.

What’s really sad here is that this scandal will likely follow Donohue forever. And, it has turned what should be the incredible experience of being a “Jeopardy!” contestant into a nightmare. 

Flashback: Video: That Time Alex Trebek Opened ‘Jeopardy!’ Without Pants

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