Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Romanian TV Reporter Fined for Comparing Serena Williams to ‘Monkeys at the Zoo’

Serena Williams

*A Romanian television host has been fined after making “extreme racist” comments about tennis champ Serena Williams during the US Open.

Radu Banciu made the comments on his late-night show B1 TV, according to shape.com, saying Williams “looks like those monkeys at the zoo with the red butt.”

He added, “If you put some pants over that butt, they look exactly as Serena Williams looks on the court.”
Bancui was not fired for his vulgar comments. Instead, he was hit with a $1,875—fine, according to Romanian news outlet Romania Insider.

Romania’s National Council for Combating Discrimination (CNCD) was quick to condemn Bancui’s vile comments in a press release.

“The governing board shows that slavery of people of colour was based, among other things, on their comparison with monkeys,” the press release said. “As a result, such statements express a form of extreme racism.”

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Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time Williams has been subjected to such blatant racism.

Racial slurs were hurled at her during Indian Wells in California in 2001, prompting her to not play in the tournament for many years.

“I remember the whole stadium was 99 per cent white people and they were all booing,” Williams said later. “There were racial slurs too. It was like this echo.”

In Miami a spectator was removed from one of her matches after he said, ‘Hit the net like a Negro would.’

“I was shocked. I couldn’t believe it. I had to do a double take. I think I hit a double fault at that point,” Williams recalled. “Who says these things outside of first grade. At a professional venue you don’t do that. It was shocking, I couldn’t believe he would stoop to that level.”

Back in 2015, after Williams won the French Open, Vox reported on a Twitter user who said Williams “looks like a gorilla, and sounds like a gorilla when she grunts while hitting the ball. In conclusion, she is a gorilla.”


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In an interview with rapper Common for The Undefeated, the athlete recalled a childhood experience with racism while practicing with her sister. 

“One time I was playing, and these kids came up behind me while we were practicing and—I was probably, like, seven—they were calling me Blacky,” she said in the interview. “Me and Venus, they were like, ‘Blacky and Blacky.’ I remember thinking, ‘I don’t really care’—and that’s pretty crazy to think that at that age.” 


Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is an entertainment reporter with over 15 years of experience working in the film industry in areas including production and post-production, marketing, distribution, and acquisitions. She has worked for legendary film producer Roger Corman, Quentin Tarantino's production team at Miramax, the late Larry Flynt, MTV/ VH1, Hallmark Channel, Paramount, Jim Henson Co., Parade Magazine, and various LA-based companies representing above-the-line talent.




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