Marlee Matlin: Donald Trump “Retarded” Comment Is “Abhorrent”
On Thursday, The Daily Beast published a story in which three sources claimed Trump referred to the deaf actress as “retarded” while she competed on “The Celebrity Apprentice” in 2011. Though Matlin finished as the runner-up, the story alleged Trump “had a habit of insulting, mimicking, and demeaning [her] as mentally handicapped.” The outlet, basing its report on anonymous former staffers of the NBC competition, further said the mogul “would regularly disrespect the actress and would even treat her as if she were mentally disabled.”
Now on Friday, hours after the article was posted online, Matlin is responding. She tweeted, “My response to recent media reports – Marlee,” with a photo attached of a type-written statement. It reads:
“Recent media reports have circulated that Donald Trump allegedly referred to me as ‘retarded.’ The term is abhorrent and should never be used. The fact that we are talking about this during a very important moment in American history has upset me deeply.
I am Deaf. There are millions of Deaf and hard of hearing people like me, in the United States and around the world who face discrimination and misunderstanding on like this on a daily basis. It is unacceptable.
So, what’s the response? It’s not about insults or taking each other down. As a person who is Deaf, as a woman, as a mom, as a wife, as an actor, I have a voice. And I’m using that voice to make myself heard…and vote.”
Also on Friday, the Huffington Post claimed Trump made rude comments about Khloe Kardashian’s appearance when she competed on the show, even allegedly referring to her as a “piglet.” Trump himself has not addressed the reports. Matlin, who also participated in his Comedy Central roast and knew Trump as far back as 1989, is pictured above with him at an “Apprentice” event in 2011.