EDMONDS, Wash. — Former Jeopardy! contestant and ableist celebrity Ken Jennings was seen pulling his hair out and crouching into a fetal position at his home on Friday night. Jennings said that his distress was the result of seeing a model in a wheelchair on a TV commercial and finding the woman physically attractive.
As reports of this incident surfaced online, Jennings looked back at his notable 2014 tweet, which stated, “Nothing sadder than a hot person in a wheelchair.” For years he thought this sentence encapsulated his view of disabled people. Now Jennings is unsure of what to think or where to go from here.
“I don’t know what to do. It’s like my entire moral philosophy suddenly means nothing,” Jennings told reporters on Saturday morning.
Jennings had just finished eating dinner and was getting ready to watch Real Time with Bill Maher when he stumbled upon the aforementioned commercial. As he gazed at the bodily features of model Diana Schwartz, he felt an attraction. However, he panicked once he noticed Schwartz’s wheelchair.
“I immediately tried to look away, and to tell myself it was just an accident,” Jennings said in between gulps as he chugged a bottle of water.
He then returned to his study to frantically peruse old essays and journal entries. “Maybe wheelchair users can be just as attractive as nondisabled people? Ugh, it just sounds crazy.”