Snowboarder Shaun White apologized on Tuesday after the Special Olympics slammed him for dressing up as an intellectually disabled character for Halloween, USA Today reports. The three-time Olympic gold medalist reportedly posted an Instagram photo over the weekend with his costume of “Simple Jack,” a character in the 2008 movie Tropic Thunder that drew criticism for being a “crude portrayal of a person with an intellectual disability.” Soeren Palumbo, co-founder of the organization’s “Spread the Word to End the Word” campaign, reportedly told HuffPost in a statement that “disability is not a joke nor should it be a punchline.”
White has since deleted the Instagram photo and apologized for his costume in a statement posted on social media. “I owe everyone in the Special Olympics community an apology for my poor choice of Halloween costume the other night,” White wrote. “It was a last minute decision. It was the wrong one. The Special Olympics were right to call me out on it. They do great work supporting so many tremendous athletes and I am sorry for being insensitive. Lesson learned.” The Special Olympics’ Twitter account has since thanked White for his apology.