As The Daily Wire reported this morning, the judges of popular game show “Jeopardy!” recently deemed that the Christian holy city of Bethlehem, which is located in the southern suburban outskirts of Jerusalem, is located in Israel — and not in so-called “Palestine.” Located roughly six miles south of Jerusalem, Bethlehem is located in Judea and Samaria (i.e., the “West Bank”) — a technically disputed portion of the land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea to which Israel has the unambiguously superior claim under all relevant principles of international law.
As read by famed host Alex Trebek, the viral $200 clue in the “Jeopardy!” category of “Where’s that church?” read: “Built in the 300s A.D., the Church of the Nativity.”
The first contestant to buzz in, defending champion Katie Needle, responded with, “What is Palestine?” Trebek deemed that to be incorrect. A second contestant, Jack McGuire, then buzzed in and responded with, “What is Israel?” Trebek deemed that to be correct and, since it was the final clue of the round, then took the show into commercial break.
Watch it here:
Could be one of my favorite Jeopardy moments of all time pic.twitter.com/2gpVLpDWlR
— Jon Levine (@LevineJonathan) January 11, 2020
In the aftermath of this fairly anodyne exchange, many Israel-hating leftists have gone berserk. The moral midgets at Code Pink have even organized a petition entitled, “Tell Jeopardy! the correct answer is PALESTINE!”
Faux outrage much?
In an exclusive, The Daily Wire was able to speak with McGuire, who provided more details and context as to what exactly happened both on- and off-camera. The Daily Wire spoke with McGuire exclusively.
McGuire explained that, following Trebek guiding the program into commercial break, there was a significant huddle on-stage — perhaps around eight minutes, McGuire estimated — between the show’s compliance, legal, and stage manager officers. The “Jeopardy!” judges decided to scrap the clue and return the two players’ scores to what they had been immediately before. They then re-ran the segment with a new clue (which McGuire also answered correctly): “Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe.”
Curiously, on the version of the show that aired for viewers over the weekend, the original clue of “Church of the Nativity” aired and the substitute clue of “Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe” was nowhere to be seen. McGuire expressed bemusement as to why this might have happened. Interestingly, McGuire also noted that there was another clue in the category of “Where’s that church?” whose answer was located in an arguably geopolitically contested city: La Sagrada Familia, which is in Barcelona and is therefore claimed by both Spain and the Catalonian independence movement.
As for McGuire’s politics himself, he says he is a registered independent with libertarian and conservative leanings. Though he says he isn’t always in agreement with every action of the Israeli government, when it comes to the Jewish state’s right to exist and act in defense of that right, McGuire says he “firmly stands with Israel, now and for all time.” He also mentioned that he is a fan of The Daily Wire and Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro.
As for Needle’s politics, her quite public social media presence speaks for itself.
“Palestine should be free,” Needle tweeted on Friday, also adding an emoji of an ostensible flag that The Daily Wire was unable to identify as that of a confirmed geopolitical entity.
Thanks! Palestine should be free 🇵🇸
— Katie Needle (@katieee817) January 11, 2020
On Friday, Needle also promoted an article in the “Journal of Palestine Studies,” which The Daily Wire was also unable to identify as a periodical devoted to the study of a confirmed geopolitical entity.
Check out @jeannetteeee12 ‘s new article in the Journal of Palestine Studies @PalStudies about US policy in Palestine https://t.co/LTyoFl8w11
— Katie Needle (@katieee817) January 11, 2020
However, McGuire confirmed that he and Needle get along very well, and that he thinks very highly of her as a “Jeopardy!” champion. Not only did Needle generally handle the controversy with aplomb and fail to raise a fuss, but McGuire described her to The Daily Wire as a “thoroughly wonderful person.”
Alas, she seems to be a wonderful person with an unusual affinity for legally fictitious geopolitical entities. One can only assume she feels the same way about Narnia, Mordor, and Tatooine.
Today, “Jeopardy!” released an official statement on the faux controversy:
In the process of taping this clue, “BUILT IN THE 300s A.D., THE CHURCH OF THE NATIVITY” we became aware that the clue was flawed as written and that determining an acceptable response would be problematic. In accordance with our rules and in the interest of fairness, we voided the clue and threw it out. We restored Katie’s and Jack’s scores to what they were prior to the clue. The outcome of the game was not affected. We then continued the game with this replacement clue.
Unfortunately, through human error in post-production, the uncorrected version of the game was broadcast. We regret the error and we will make every effort to ensure this never happens again.
The famous game show also released a YouTube clip of the “Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe” substitute clue.