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LAWSUIT: Sign Language Expert Fired From ‘The Lion King’ Because He’s White

Todd Starnes

The following is a transcript of Todd’s commentary – heard daily on hundreds of radio stations around the nation. Click here to listen to Todd’s daily podcast.

Hello Americans, I’m Todd Starnes. Stand by for news and commentary next. 

The Great White Way is too White. 

That’s according to the folks in charge of “The Lion King.”

Should skin color be a factor in hiring on Broadway?

A white sign-language interpreter was fired from his Broadway job because of his skin color. 

Keith Wann is one of two white people who were forced off the production by the non-profit Theatre Development Fund. 

That’s the organization that staffs Broadway shows with sign language interpreters. 

The group decided it was “no longer appropriate to have white interpreters represent black characters for ASL Broadway shows.”

Mr. Wann says he was told via email that he was being replaced because of the current social climate. 

The New York Post obtained additional emails that called for the removal of all non-black interpreters. 

(Lisa) Carling’s decision came at the behest of Shelly Guy, the director of ASL for “The Lion King,” and called for Carling to get rid of all non-black interpreters, according to another email obtained by The Post and cited in the suit.

“The majority of the characters in the Lion King are black actors and the content takes place in Africa,” Guy wrote Carling on April 1.

“Keith Wann, though an amazing ASL performer, is not a black person and therefore should not be representing Lion King,” she declared.

Mr. Wann has filed a federal lawsuit — alleging discrimination.  But the decision goes beyond discrimination — it’s racism. 

Mr. Wann was judged by the color of his skin. 

“To me, just seeing that discrimination, it doesn’t matter if I’m white or black,” Wann told the Post. “This is blatant and I would just hope that other people who have also experienced this would step forward.”

This is the sort of nonsense I wrote about in my book, “Culture Jihad: How to Stop the Left From Killing a Nation.”

But if the new rule on Broadway is that actors must reflect the skin color of the characters they are portraying – that spells big trouble for the cast of Hamilton. 

Our Founding Fathers were mostly a bunch of lily white dudes.

I’m Todd Starnes

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