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The talk show host and her show have now pledged to donate to the American Cleft Palate Association.
Wendy was blasted on social media this week after she mimicked what Phoenix's face looks like by using her finger to pull her mouth to that position. The talk show host took to Twitter to address the situation and is using her misstep to help the community suffering from the ailment.
Wendy Apologizes For Mimicking Joaquin Phoenix's Face
On her show this week, Wendy was discussing the actor and his recent role as 'Joker' and she said, "He’s got that good nose that dips way down and he’s happy with, so am I...And when he shaves off his mustache he’s got a hairline fracture. He’s got one of those – what do you call it? Cleft lip palate."
Talk show host then proceeded to lift her lip to mimic a cleft palate.
"We’re thinking about Beau today as he is in surgery. I want to apologize to the cleft community and in Beau’s honor, our show is donating to @operationsmile and @AmerCleftPalate and encourage our Wendy Watchers to learn more and help support the cleft community," Williams tweeted.
The Wendy Williams Show Donates In One Boy's Honor
Wendy directed her message at football player Adam Bighill who is very active in the community and was very upset with what Wendy did on her show. He tweeted the day it aired, "This is @WendyWilliams making fun of the cleft community on her TV show. Are you kidding me??? We all have a responsibility to #EndBullying"
He continued, "With her platform, like myself, we have a much higher responsibility when it comes to our actions. This is just terrible."
On Twitter, Adam shared the story of a young boy, Beau, who is headed into surgery for his cleft palate. The story shined light on the situation, and humanized the situation it seems for Wendy.
"Today is Beau’s big day. He is getting his lip repaired today in Winnipeg by the fantastic Dr. Ross. Thanks to everyone who has reached out, and in advance, thanks for any of your well wishes for Beau. He is so loved! " Adam wrote with a picture of the young boy.
Wendy Sends Message To Little Beau Before Surgery
The good news, after Wendy apologized, Adam excepted her apology and sent her a message back appreciating her using the platform in this way.
"Thank you @WendyWilliams for your apology, your donation, and for thinking of Beau today for his surgery. I forgive you, and I encourage others to as well. I wish you all the best," Bighill tweeted.
A Cleft lip palette is a common birth condition resulting in a baby's mouth and top lip forming incorrectly. The result is a visible raised lip, often causing speech. It is usually fixed via surgery but can leave a lasting scar on the person's lip.