By Kathryn Blackhurst | February 4, 2019
Some people on the Left apparently believe it is all President Donald Trump’s fault that Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) may or may not have donned blackface or a Ku Klux Klan costume for a racist 1984 medical school yearbook photo — at least according to some MSNBC analysts.
Northam last week first became embroiled in controversy when he supported a late-term abortion bill — and appeared to defend and rationalize infanticide.
Although his remarks incensed conservatives, Democrats didn’t criticize Northam fully until a racist picture from his yearbook page surfaced.
The outrageous picture showed someone in blackface and someone wearing a Ku Klux Klan outfit. Northam initially apologized for being in the picture on Friday — but the very next day, at a press conference, he insisted he wasn’t in it after all and didn’t know about it until just days ago.
To make matters worse for Northam, he claimed he would have remembered being in such a photo because he remembered dressing up in blackface as Michael Jackson around that same time.
Despite widespread calls for his resignation from both sides of the aisle, Northam has refused to step down as governor.
On Monday, NBC and MSNBC anchor Craig Melvin asked panelists on the “Today” show on NBC for their thoughts on the controversy.
Melvin noted that multiple blackface incidents have been unearthed over the last few weeks.
Former Florida Secretary of State Mike Ertel resigned after a picture of him in blackface dressed as a Hurricane Katrina survivor for Halloween in 2005 surfaced in January.
“When did blackface become a thing again?” Melvin wanted to know. “Why does it seem as if blackface is all of a sudden front-and-center in America again? What’s happening?”
Stunningly, MSNBC analyst Prof. Eddie Glaude (pictured above right), chair of Princeton’s African-American studies department, blamed Trump for the recent spate of blackface photo controversies.
“I think it has something to do with what Donald Trump has unleashed,” Glaude claimed. “It has something to do with what’s [in] the reservoir that’s underneath our politics that can always be activated at any moment.”
“So it’s not like … something new has happened. It’s always underneath. It’s the undertow,” Glaude warned.
MSNBC commentator and SiriusXM host Zerlina Maxwell (above left) agreed — and argued the blackface photos from decades ago are somehow still Trump’s fault.
“Young children of color are dealing with kids saying, ‘Build the wall.’ And so I agree with Professor Glaude,” Maxwell said. “Donald Trump has normalized this overt display of racism where it used to be impolite, you know. It’s not OK in polite social settings to be overtly racist.”
“And I think that this moment is a moment in which we have to be honest. We need to call it out. We need to name it,” Maxwell continued. “We can’t, you know, beat around the bush, call it ‘racially charged.’ We need to say something is racist, it is not OK and … it shouldn’t be accepted in polite conversation.”
MSNBC anchor Katy Tur also had an outrageous take on the Northam blackface controversy during a segment Monday on “MSNBC Live.”
“The Democratic Party is trying to be pretty clear on this, it seems. You can’t do this in the Democratic Party. The Republican Party, maybe you can, but the Democratic Party you can’t,” Tur insisted.
The MSNBC anchor didn’t apparently think it worthwhile to note that Republican Ertel did, in fact, resign after his blackface controversy — whereas Northam is still refusing to do so, even though prominent Democrats across the country have said he should resign.
“The Republican Party has been accused [of not being] racially sensitive, to put it in delicate terms … The president himself has been accused of being a racist multiple times,” Tur said.
“Given that, there are some folks out there who say, ‘Hey, listen, why should a Democrat who seemed to have led a decent life since then and has represented the state and won a majority of black voters, why should he pay the price for wrongdoings on the other side?'” she added.
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This piece originally appeared in LifeZette and is used by permission.
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