Fans are calling for Wendy Williams to be kicked off the air in a change.org petition that currently has over 65,000 signatures.
Fans’ outrage comes after Williams made jokes on her talk show mocking Joaquin Phoenix and others who have cleft lips or palates. In addition to pointing out what she believed to be his cleft surgical scar when judging his attractiveness, Williams used her finger to demonstrate what a cleft lip looks like.
The popular petition’s final statement reads, “What I am saying is that she is a disgusting human being and in my opinion, if Don Cherry got fired for saying ‘you people’ than she should be banned from daytime TV.”
Corey Perry originally started the petition, directing it at FOX Broadcasting Company. In the beginning of the petition’s description, he explained he was sharing a post made by his good friend, the mother of a child with a cleft lip to help others understand why “Wendy Williams needs to go.”
“So this ignorant piece of work decided to mock Joaquin Phoenix and his “hare lip, cleft lip, palate” on daytime television and even went as far as pulling her upper lip with her finger, she is a total disgrace. Kids can be cruel and as a mother of an amazing little guy who was born with complete bilateral cleft lip, hard and soft palate, I am completely disgusted that she thinks it’s ok to ridicule and make a joke out of something that is completely out of our control,” the petition’s description reads.
The post then goes on to detail the various struggles the mother and son had to go through for his health including “numerous surgeries,” “lung infections” and missing activities because of “feeding tubes.”
Like the story shared in the petition’s description, others who chose to sign spoke up about their experience coming from the cleft community or having loved ones affected by the condition.
“My son was born with complete bilateral cleft lip, soft and hard palate. She is making a mockery of a very serious condition with no regards for the trauma it causes to millions of family. Instead of using her platform to educate, she only promotes bullying and it is absolutely disgusting,” one signer wrote.
I’ve had more than a dozen surgeries because of my cleft lip and cleft palate. Your actions actually made me feel bad about myself, and that really sucks. You should consider apologizing to Joaquin Phoenix, at the least. #WendyWilliams pic.twitter.com/0gHkM0ZoaM
— Alden Hirata (@_ATHirata) January 15, 2020
While fans are still expressing their anger, Operation Smile reached out on Twitter to accept Williams’ apology and donation.
“We appreciate your comment and willingness to encourage others to learn about our cause. To learn more about how we deliver safe surgery to people who need it most, please visit our website,” Operation Smile tweeted in response to her apology and donation announcement.
However, singer Cher said what many fans were already thinking, “there is no apology for what she did and laughed at” and “she wants to keep her job.”
We appreciate your comment and willingness to encourage others to learn about our cause. To learn more about how we deliver safe surgery to people who need it most, please visit our website https://t.co/3hNQpCMrqK
— Operation Smile (@operationsmile) January 16, 2020
Some Twitter users found another way to deliver some retribution to the talk show host and defend Joaquin Phoenix. Over the last week, Wendy Williams became the subject of many memes.
Some Twitter users compared her body type to the letter “P,” while others called her “bug-eyed” and compared her to the “Morlocks from the movie ‘The Time Machine.”
However, the most popular meme currently circulating is a picture of Williams, alongside who fans are calling her doppelganger, ET dressed as a girl.