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“Jeopardy!” Apologizes For Palestinian Erasure Error

“Jeopardy!” Apologizes For Palestinian Erasure Error

This past week, popular gameshow “Jeopardy!” sparked outrage. The catalyst in question came about when contestant Katie Needle’s correct response that the Church of the Nativity is located in Palestine was deemed incorrect by host Alex Trebek. Another contestant, Jack McGuire, was awarded $200 for his response of Israel.

Social media was quick to call out “Jeopardy!” for its erasure of Palestine.

On Monday, “Jeopardy!” issued the following statement:

“In the process of taping this clue, ‘BUILT IN THE 300s A.D., THE CHURCH OF THE NATIVITY’ we became aware that the clue was flawed as written and that determining an acceptable response would be problematic. In accordance with our rules and in the interest of fairness, we voided the clue and threw it out. We restored Katie’s and Jack’s scores to what they were prior to the clue. The outcome of the game was not affected. We then continued the game with this replacement clue.

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Unfortunately, through human error in post-production, the uncorrected version of the game was broadcast. We regret the error and we will make every effort to ensure this never happens again.”

The United Nations views Israeli settlements in Bethlehem and the West Bank as illegal, and in violation of international law. The unwillingness of this popular American television show to stand by an overwhelming international consensus is yet another example of America’s erasure of Palestine. tweet

Although, the show admitted to the error, it failed to explain why Trebek did not explain the error during the original taping. In other instances of “human error,” Trebek has explained — on-air — the mistake and the scores were adjusted accordingly. In this case, the clue was deemed too controversial. The producers intended to eliminate the clue instead of clarifying that the Church of the Nativity is located in Bethlehem, which is in the West Bank.

The Church of the Nativity is a world heritage site that is internationally recognized as part of Palestine. The United Nations views Israeli settlements in Bethlehem and the West Bank as illegal, and in violation of international law. The unwillingness of this popular American television show to stand by an overwhelming international consensus is yet another example of America’s erasure of Palestine.

Image courtesy of Flickr
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