WWE Called Out Over Their Anti-Bullying Campaign
Lisa Wright, who is the program director of the national non-profit organization Council for Unity, wrote a letter to the Be A Star Alliance questioning their affiliation with WWE after receiving an e-mail concerning the “fat jokes” being directed towards performer Vickie Guerrero on television. She asks how the anti-bullying organization’s partnership with WWE fits their mission to show tolerance and respect since professional wrestling consists of name calling and threats culminating in violence.
Her statement reads: “I recently received an e-mail regarding your alliance with the WWE. The e-mail pointed out the “fat jokes” about Vickie Guerrero. Wrestling as I perceive it consists of name calling and threats culminating in violence to settle conflicts. How does this fit with your mission to `Show Tolerance and Respect?’ Are you saying this behavior is alright for entertainment value? As an employee of a member organization listed on your website, your questionable judgment reflects poorly, not only on you, but on all the organizations listed there.
“As an organization whose mission is to prevent violence and bullying, we must be careful who we partner with and what messages that partnership sends. As we look for funding, ways to market our mission, and new partnerships, we must remain aware of the cultural forces that impact those that we serve. Furthermore, we must be sensitive not to promote the very negative behaviors that we have spent our professional lives trying to prevent. I fail to see how an alliance with the WWE will do that. We must be aware that in our business, as in life, actions speak louder than words. The WWE may, in principal, be against bullying and the violence that so often accompanies it, however, the very nature of the business is not conducive to a culture of inclusion and peace that we here at the Council for Unity seek to create. To that end, we respectfully request the removal of our organization from your web site.”
WWE and The Creative Coalition teamed up for a party centered around SummerSlam and the “be a STAR” initiative last Thursday in Los Angeles, California promoting anti-bullying. Contrary to the campaign, Jerry Lawler made jokes concerning Guerrero’s weight days later on RAW while she occupied the announce booth for a segment.
This wouldn’t be the first time in recent memory that a WWE storyline targeted a female performer for her weight, as something similar is allegedly why Mickie James left the company.