Sigh. Another day, another blackface story.
Makeup artist Perçem Akin has been called out for posting a photo to her Instagram where she used makeup to darken her skin, allegedly calling it her "Lovely black beauty transformation."
It's 2017, and this is literal blackface.
Although not many have called it out, the artist also culturally appropriated head wraps — which is a style staple in African and African-American culture.
Akin not feeling like darkening her face is a racist or offensive act also needs more unpacking.
It's not about what the intentions are; it's about how it affects people.
White people of any origin don't get to decide what is and is not a racist act against people of color. It also makes little sense to decide that an act isn't wrong as long as you believe it's right.
Outcry against blackface also isn't new. People of color have long been expressing their distaste for people who darken their skin to take on their likeness like it's a costume.
We should be able to say, "Hey, that offends me. Please stop doing that," and then actually see the practice stop.
The fact that a person would be aware of how people of color feel about blackface, yet still move forward with an offensive "look" is not just annoying and heartless — it also undermines the agency that those people should have with their image and identities.
Blackface wasn't cool back when racist white people made fun of Black people during minstrel shows for crowds of other laughing white people in the 19th century.
It's just as uncool today. Just stop, people. This will never be OK.