Friday, November 20, 2009

Tyra Apologizes for Biracial Photoshoot: Feel Good Fridays

Hey Athenites,

So, remember that extremely angry article that I wrote about 2 weeks ago regarding America's Next Top Model and their biracial/blackface themed photoshoot? And how it was preposterous and offensive that Tyra would present race as something that you could put on for a photoshoot and take strip off like it didn't matter. And also that you cannot essentialize a racial or cultural group down to one dress or headdress or item of editorial clothing.

Well, she has apologized for that offensive photoshoot on her talk show, The Tyra Banks Show.

"I apologize because that was not my intent. It's my number one passion in my life to stretch the definition of beauty. I listen to many heartbreaking stories of women who thought they would be happier if they looked different. I want every girl to appreciate the skin she's in."

Kind of a half-assed apology, but still, half-assed is better (I have never fully understood that expression.) She pulled the classic: "I'm sorry if this offended YOU, but lots of other people weren't offended (implication: you are too sensitive)."

Although Tyra does not acknowledge the reasons WHY this shoot was offensive or attempt to educate anyone about the complex racial issues involved in blackface, she at least made an overture of apology. More here.

Good try, Tyra. In a similar form of compromise, I will continue to watch your show, but will watch it on youtube to deprive you of any associated advertising revenue.


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