2009-10-30

Blackface Has Made A Comeback-Thanks Tyra!!!!






Tyra should know better. Making it "biracialface" instead of "blackface" doesn't change that it is still stupid as hell. Skin color is not an option or clothing choice. It is emotionally charged and Tyra of all people should know that. Now we will have idiots supporting blackface with the old addage "black people do it too" excuse to justify stupidity and racism. How long has this show been on the air, isn't it like on it's 800th season? It's obvious they are running out of ideas.

There is a huge complaint that within the fashion industry there is a lack of diversity in the models used. I guess this is how they resolve the problem, instead of using actual people of color as models, we just paint some existing (mostly white) models up, and diversity has been achieved. Racism in the fashion industry has been eliminated. Thanks Tyra!!!!!








'America's Next Top Model' Cycle 13: Biracial Photoshoot, Ravishing or Racist?

Last night on America's Next Top Model, Tyra took the final 6 models to Hawaii, where they underwent 'transformations' to embody two distinct ethnic heritages for a 'hapa'-inspired photo shoot.

Since the final photos of the models--who each donned darker hair, painted skin, and color-corrective contact lenses to take on the various ethnic looks--hit the web yesterday, a debate is waging about whether the photo shoot is an intentional publicity stunt (perhaps meant to play off of French Vogue's recent Blackface spread that sparked much outrage), an innocent (and some might say successful) attempt to celebrate Hawaii's diversity, or just another poorly advised photo shoot from Ms. Banks, just as insulting in its ignorant conception as its offensive execution.

After all, it's not the first time Tyra has come under fire for telling her ANTM models to act out something in poor taste--and this time, without so much as a word during the show about the possible repercussions of putting white models in exotic costumes and dark makeup. Such a stunt treads dangerous ground--even for Tyra, who frequently breaches the topic of race on her talk show and often firmly, openly denounces behavior she believes is discriminatory. As a black woman, does she have greater license to commission such work?

I don't have all the answers, but I do know that Tyra has a greater responsibility than most--especially as a role model to young women--to encourage education and respect among women of all cultures. It's certainly not for me to say whether Tyra's intentions with this photo shoot were to do so or not, especially because such an argument is squarely beside the point. It's the result we should be concerned about--as in, how Tyra's many diverse viewers--Black, White, Asian, Latina, and everyone in between--responded to the 'hapa' photo shoot.

Did you find the photo shoot inspiring, beautiful, and celebratory--or insulting, offensive and demeaning of other cultures?

Are people just being too sensitive--or was a little more sensitivity needed in avoiding this tasteless stunt?