Historian weighs in on why blackface was, is offensive

Why blackface is offensive

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Governor Ivey apologized Thursday for a skit where she put on blackface 52 years ago while at Auburn University. That has left some people asking why was wearing blackface as a college student back then such a big deal today?

A retired professor who helped start the African American Studies program at UAB discussed the controversy Friday.

Horace Huntley says blackface was used by whites to create their version of black people. This version was considered racist, demeaning, and created stereotypes that most African Americans consider offensive years ago and today.

“Huge lips, big eyes, a piece of watermelon in your hand. All of these are stereotypes and negatives and that is the way white America viewed black America.” Huntley said.

Huntley said despite the Governor’s apology, this is troubling and a simple apology won’t be enough. He agreed with other African American leaders who said the governor needs to be involved in a discussion on race which he admits many people do not want to take part in today.

Copyright 2019 WBRC. All rights reserved.