In Trump’s America it seems like blackface is making a strong comeback–and we’re getting real sick of it.
This time it’s a white Virginia deputy who thought she was beg funny when dressed up as Congresswoman Frederica Wilson for Halloween. Apparently, the pictures resurfacing weeks later.
According to the New York Post, Jean Browning, a deputy from York-Poquoson, is claiming that she had no idea what blackface and that putting dark makeup on her face to mimic African-Americans was something that white people should never do.
Even worse: Her job is co-signing on this nonsense.
“She did not mock her or make any attempt to degrade her,” York-Poquoson Sheriff J.D. Diggs said in a statement posted on Facebook.
“Deputy Browning’s intent was simply to portray Wilson as a political celebrity as Browning’s boyfriend was in a costume portraying Donald Trump. The combined intent of the couple was to convey the message of how funny it would be for two political figures that were at odds with each other to go to a party together.”
“There were people in our office who did not know what blackface was. Personally, I did not,”York-Poquoson Sherriff Communications Officer Shelly Ward told the press. “I had to Google it.”
As we know, Congresswoman Wilson was thrust into the media spotlight after she called out President Trump for telling Army Sgt. La David Johnson‘s widow, Myeshia Johnson, “[he]knew what he signed up for,” she’s been catapulted into the national spotlight.
In the meantime, the NAACP has demanded to have a meeting with the local police to discuss further steps and file a complaint. But of course Browning didn’t lose her job. She’s just been reassigned from her school Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) program officer to courtroom duty.
Here’s how Ward spun it.
“Although it was acknowledged that our concerns were legitimate, it was clear that there would be no disciplinary action taken against Deputy Browning by the sheriff’s department.
She added: “It was commented to [the NAACP chapter’s president] that had Deputy Browning been wearing a ‘noose’ or a derogatory sign, disciplinary action would be appropriate. However, it is the Branch’s position that blackface in and of itself should be enough to warrant disciplinary action.”
Granted this city has a population of 195 people, but I don’t believe a word these people are saying about not knowing how problematic blackface is when they claim they know what a noose represents. Not to mention, these people are the police and are supposed to protect and respect their citizens.
It’s 2017…white folks, please do better.