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Russell Brands Offends Para-Olympians


His comments might be just for laughs, but Russell Brand still managed to offend the group of para-olympic athletes he referred to in his stand-up comedy gig at the Pleasance theatre in Islington, North London.

The 36-year-old comedian made the demeaning comments earlier last week, ironically less than 48 hours before the supposed International Paralympic Day was to take place in Trafalgar Square.

Brand reportedly said, “I don’t give a f*** about the Olympics. It’s boring Blue Peter sport and a waste of taxpayers’ money. At least the Paralympics have some kind of novelty value or something.”

Paralympians slammed the star for his comments, saying that what he said was patronizing.

Natasha Baker, a 21-year-old dressage para-olympian said, “We’ve worked harder than anyone to get here. We’ve suffered life-threatening illnesses. It’s both patronizing and upsetting for Russell Brand to describe us as a novelty,”

Wheelchair athlete David Weir, who won two medals at the 2008 Beijing games, said, “Calling the sport a novelty is offensive.”

“It’s not like I get up, do one marathon then go to bed for the rest of the year. I train every day — I am no different to Paula Radcliffe.

“Brand obviously hasn’t met any Paralympians. If he did he certainly wouldn’t call any of us a novelty,” Weir added.

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