Funny or racist? Caroline Wozniacki draws fire for her Serena impersonation

Jay Busbee | Busted Racquet, Yahoo!7 December 12, 2012, 12:41 pm

Tennis players have a habit of impersonating one another for a laugh while in exhibition matches, and one of the more notable, for any number of reasons, is Caroline Wozniacki's overstuffed take on her friend Serena Williams.

This past weekend, playing a match in Sao Paolo against Maria Sharapova, Wozniacki added a bit of padding and played a point "as" Williams.

Funny little goof, right? Because Wozniacki and Williams are friends, and especially because Williams herself has no problem making fun of her own figure? But no, this is an era where no joke goes unscrutinized, and no humor apparently exists without sinister subtext.

In other words: People are actually saying Caroline Wozniacki was performing a racist act.

One blogger on Tumblr wrote, "this isn't 'harmless fun' as one article described it. its racist. out and outright racism. mocking and making fun of the bodies of black women for a laugh? real funny, stupid white girl. real real funny." (Link not provided because of nonstop profanity in the rest of the post. And the words "stupid white girl" in a post condemning racism presented without comment.)

Another Tumblr blogger actually tried to make a point, wondering why Wozniacki's routine is acceptable and Williams drew criticism for her "Crip Walk" after winning gold in the Olympics. It's a fair question, if only because Williams didn't deserve the grief she got.

Thing is, this isn't the first time Wozniacki has done a Serena impression. For that matter, Wozniacki isn't the only tennis player to do Serena impressions; Andy Roddick did the same thing in 2011. Both of those moments received plenty of publicity; why is this only a racial issue now?

It's a fine line here; had Wozniacki come out in blackface makeup, the line would obviously be crossed. Here? One could argue that Wozniacki was making fun of Williams' figure outside the context of race; there are, of course, white curvaceous women's tennis players. Throwing out accusations of racism is all too easy for such a serious charge, particularly on the Internet, and the likely outcome of this is simply that Wozniacki won't do this particular gag again. An apology may be forthcoming, but it shouldn't be.

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  1. Jvc01:21pm Thursday 20th March 2014 ESTReport Abuse

    i think she just having fun playing tennis

  2. kondorflight05:44pm Friday 19th April 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    serena should play In the men tour,as she clearly looks just like a bloke!!!

  3. 05:10pm Thursday 13th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Is it now racist to make a joke now? Seriously, this whole racism thing is getting out-of-hand.

  4. Graeme04:36pm Thursday 13th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Oops! I'm a Sexist!!!!

  5. Graeme04:35pm Thursday 13th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Very funny, and not the least "news-worthy". All media, including the one we are on now, ought to be compelled NOT to even think of reporting such trash. Racism only exists because either side attracts support due to media reports/ advertising. Now, am I a rascist? Which race? There are some cases where "Apartheit" (sp) would be beneficial. Check all definitions before you label me a rascist.........and then take a look at the Indigenous Australians. Compare with the non-indigenous New Zealand Maori! ....or Indigenous North American Indians! She was taking the #$%$ out of PERSON, not her RACE! ( not many of them have such big jugs)!

  6. slobby Don01:43pm Thursday 13th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Have1 (mental issue ) What is offensive is racists like you. I have freinds that are W0gs , Daig0s , Sp1cs , Nigs & Abs. They are all filth & know it. This is why i am not racist. as they know there place in society. What is your problem. FILTH

  7. slobby Don01:25pm Thursday 13th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    She is a freind of the Nig so i dont see any racism. Nigs have big chips on there filth shoulders as we all know but Whity was just taking the #$%$

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  8. Justin11:19am Thursday 13th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    are people who are claiming it's racist saying black women are fat? That's RACIST!!

  9. Auscat10:17am Thursday 13th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    she was making fun of a friend, an indivisual person not a hole race of people. so stop being so stupid and sensitive.

  10. Twochairs07:36am Thursday 13th December 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    What is the world most lacking at the moment. LAUGHTER, that's what. everybody is so serious, its like the world has taken on a serious face and nobody is allowed to have fun. Loosen up you losing whingers and enjoy the fun while you can.