Nadine Dorries slams critics for mocking her dyslexia after TikTok gaffe

23 April 2022, 15:23

Nadine Dorries appeared on Dr Luke Evans' TikTok.
Nadine Dorries appeared on Dr Luke Evans' TikTok. Picture: Alamy

By Emma Soteriou

Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries has condemned critics who mock her dyslexia after a video gaffe on TikTok.

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In a 40-second clip, Ms Dorries spoke about people being able to "downstream" - rather than download - films online, and referred to tennis courts as "pitches".

The MP later turned to Twitter on Saturday to defend the mix-ups, saying her dyslexia meant she found it "difficult" to find the correct expression when speaking.

Ms Dorries said: "I have dyslexia, which means that when I speak I often run my words together and say things that sound like the words I'm trying to say.

"Sometimes it's funny and I laugh it off... but mostly, it's just difficult.

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She went on to say: "I'm OK with that. I've been in politics a long time and you grow a thick skin. It's why I haven't spoken publicly much about how it affects me.

"But I've found it tough seeing commentators and media outlets mock me for something that is beyond my control.

"For other dyslexia sufferers, we learn that it's what you achieve in life that counts, not what those who mock you say."

Dyslexia is described by the NHS as a common learning difficulty that mainly causes problems with reading, writing and spelling.

The clip shared on Friday by Luke Evans, the Tory MP for Bosworth, saw Ms Dorries explain the work the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) does, which she oversees.

"We're responsible for making sure you have superfast broadband in your home, that means you can downstream your movies," she told Dr Evans.

Ms Dorries went on to say that her department was also "responsible for everything to do with sport, making sure you've got football pitches and that you have tennis pitches in your communities where you can play and exercise your sport".

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