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Nyle DiMarco criticises Jamie Foxx and Jimmy Fallon over sign language ‘joke’

By Ross Semple

Nyle DiMarco has called out Jamie Foxx and Jimmy Fallon for being “disrespectful” to deaf people over a joke about sign language.

DiMarco, who was born deaf, posted a video of a skit from Foxx’s appearance on The Tonight Show, hosted by Fallon. “How was this allowed?” Nyle wrote. “Where’s the cultural sensitivity. Not comedy when you make fun of others.”

The America’s Next Top Model and Dancing with the Stars champion then released a statement on Twitter, chastising Foxx’s behaviour as a “step backward.”

“We simply do not make fun at the expense of other cultures, especially those with a history of being marginalized,” Nyle wrote. “When we do this, progress takes a step backward.

“What Foxx did on Fallon Tonight made our struggle that much harder.”

Nyle has devoted much of his time post-ANTM and DWTS to activism, starting the Nyle DiMarco Foundation with the goal of making “the world a better place for all Deaf people and their families”. He also gives his Instagram fans lessons in American Sign Language.

Neither Foxx nor Fallon has responded to the criticism.

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