'Wheel of Fortune' Fans Accuse Pat Sajak of Mocking a Contestant's Speech Impediment

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Good Housekeeping Editors
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Photo credit: Ethan Miller
Photo credit: Ethan Miller

From Good Housekeeping

  • Pat Sajak is drawing criticism for seemingly mocking a Wheel of Fortune contestant.

  • The longtime game show host replied "I thee" instead of "I see" to a contestant named Chris Brimble, who reportedly spoke with a lisp.

  • Wheel of Fortune and Pat have not spoken out about the controversy, however Chris did reply to a tweet saying he had a "super fun experience."

Longtime Wheel of Fortune host Pat Sajak is under fire after Monday's episode.

While introducing the audience to Monday's contestants, Pat started making small talk with a contestant named Chris Brimble, who some viewers are saying spoke with a lisp. After Chris told Pat about his job, Pat concluded the exchange by saying "I thee" instead of "I see."

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At the time, Chris and a few others can be heard laughing off the interaction. Still, many viewers took the comment as Pat mocking Chris.

"That’s awful ... @patsajak - I use to be a fan ... I grew up with a parent who had issues speaking," someone said online. "As someone your age, who grew up with hearing impaired cousins, I was taught that we NEVER made fun of their speech pattern. To this day I wouldn't even think of doing what you did ... Own it and DO BETTER!," a viewer tweeted."Wowwww man. Come on dude, that's rude on so many levels," a different fan said.

Others, however, said that it was merely a play on words, suggesting Pat said "I thee" after using the word "myth."

Wheel of Fortune has not yet responded to Good Housekeeping's request for comment. Both Pat and Wheel of Fortune have stayed silent on the matter. However, on Tuesday, Chris did respond to a tweet regarding his time on the show, saying it was a "super fun experience." However, it seems that was before the clip made waves online.

Another contestant who was on the episode has come to Pat's defense, replying to a tweet stating: "I was there. I am Tee Moore. Pat was very kind to us. In psychology it is recommended that you portray another’s energy to make them feel comfortable and I believe this is what Pat does on a daily basis. It seems like he sincerely made a mistake."

The controversy comes just days after Pat tweeted on February 16: "Criticizing others is so much easier than examining our own lives ... and so much less productive." A day later, he tweeted, "How nice for those who have lived such exemplary lives that they can express glee when others have their lives ruined by a mistake, real or perceived." It's unclear what Pat's tweets were referring to at the time.

Over the past few months, Pat has sparked criticism for several of his interactions with former Wheel of Fortune contestants.

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