Body shaming and sexism: what they said
«On the Rai Play 2 channel», reads a Pec sent to Rai by an anonymous Twitter account (@defrogging), the two commentators «indulged in a series of shameful sexist and stereotyped comments». Among the distinctly heard expressions: «Smoke healthy, smoke good, smoke Pakistani only».
«The Dutch are big”
«Like our Vittorioso (Italian diver from Rome, ed) She’s big eh»;
«But anyway in bed they are all the same height».
But that’s not all: «This is called Karper, she’s a harp player, how do you play the harp? Do you?”
“Do you touch it?”
“You pinch it.”
“Yes La Do”.
«This is the advantage, men have to study seven notes, women only three».
Racism against Chinese divers
Finally, during the men’s competition of the Azzurri Riccardo Giovannini and Eduard Timbretti Gugiu, Leonarduzzi mangled the name of the Italian athlete riding a stereotype on the Chinese language. Riccardo therefore becomes «Licaldo». “The Chinese would say so”, the sentence pronounced by the commentator.
Leonarduzzi: «I distance myself, phrases far from my thoughts»
«I distance myself from everything that has been picked up by a microphone left on for technical needs and a meter and a half away from me. Some of these phrases that have been attributed to me I didn’t really say”he declares Lorenzo Leonarduzzi contacted by “Corriere della Sera”.
«These are words that do not belong to me, far from my way of being and pronounced off-air while chatting with my colleague. I was already the victim of an unfortunate incident a couple of years ago (another sexist joke during a rally commentary uttered as a bet, on which he still admits today that he «made a mistake and «justly paid the consequences»), all the more so now I am particularly careful of what I say. I don’t want my professionalism to be tarnished by these situations.”
The disciplinary measure
In the meantime, Rai announced that it had launched «a disciplinary dispute procedure against the Rai Sport journalist Lorenzo Leonarduzzi and all the necessary measures for the technical collaborator Massimiliano Mazzucchi».
According to a note, CEO Roberto Sergio said that «a Public Service journalist cannot justify himself by relegating what was broadcast to a “bar joke”. I gave a mandate to the offices in charge to start the disciplinary dispute procedure and I asked the Director of Rai Sport Iacopo Volpi to bring the commentator and technical commentator back from Japan immediately». From tomorrow the commentary of the Swimming World Championships, for the diving category, will be edited by Nicholas San Giorgio.