'Jeopardy!' sees backlash for answer picking Israel over Palestine

“Jeopardy!” has received a wave of backlash on social media after a contestant answered a question about where Bethlehem was located by saying Palestine and not Israel.

The question was specifically about where the Church of the Nativity is located. 

During an episode of the show that aired last week, a contestant selected the “Where’s that church” category, which provided contestants with the clue: “Built in the 300s AD, the Church of the Nativity.”   


Contestant Katie Needle buzzed in with Palestine as the answer shortly after host Alex Trebek read the clue. However, she was told her answer was wrong and was penalized with a $200 deduction from her overall cash score.

Another contestant, Jack McGuire, then answered, “What is Israel?”

“That’s it,” Trebek told McGuire as the contestant was awarded $200.

The Church of the Nativity, which is believed to be the place where Jesus was born, is located in Bethlehem. Bethlehem is a city in the West Bank, which Israel has occupied since 1967 and is referred to by the United Nations as the “Occupied Palestinian Territories.”

Though Needle was given the $200 back after the program cut to commercial on Friday, according to The Guardian, the move was met with swift backlash on social media.

The show did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill.