Nick Cannon causes controversy with 'whiteface' photo
Nick Cannon as Conner Smallnut
ATLANTA (CBS46) -
Nick Cannon is causing controversy with a photo he posted online to promote his new album.
Cannon donned "whiteface" to create the character Conner Smallnut to promote his new album White People Party Music.
The album drops on April Fool's Day.
Cannon posted the picture of himself on Instagram with this caption:
It's official... I'm White!!! #WHITEPEOPLEPARTYMUSIC #Wppm in stores April 1st!!!!!!Dude Go Get It!!!Join The Party!!!! #GoodCredit #DogKissing #BeerPong #FarmersMarkets #FistPumping #CreamCheeseEating #RacialDraft "Bro I got drafted!!"
People immediately began commenting on the image, saying Cannon's post was racist.
Instagram user chelasong wrote, "I'm actually black and this is terrible. Black face is a problem and its wrong, but when someone does white face, that isn't racist?"
Many compared it to white people dressing in "blackface."
Hashtagguns wrote to @da_real_ctaylah, "im not offended by him acting white. Im offended that if a white man did it itd be all over the news and everyone would be pissed. Like if jimmy fallon made a cd called 'black people trap music' and rapped about crack gold teeth and jordans. Itd be looked at as racist yet this isnt."
Many supported Cannon for turning the tables.
Hilleryandson wrote "Wow when a black guy does something like this his stupid racist not funny. But people seem to forget white folks been doing this for at least 4 generation deep with evil intentions. @nickcannon what your doing is jokes you proper look like a white dude loool you should make a movie on marcus garvey remind the people of the direction they should be heading which is unity."
And some compared it to when Julianne Hough dressed as her favorite Orange Is the New Black character for Halloween. She painted her face black to complete the outfit.
Savvy_cowgirl wrote, "If everyone is defending nick's white face, why did everyone get so pissed when a white actress did black face?!?! Double standards are disgusting. Make up your mind people! Good grief."
Cannon responded to the criticism by tweeting, "Damn I didn't know it was going to be this hard being White! ... I'm exhausted with all this 'privilege' LOL #WhitePeopleProblems"
On Monday, Cannon spoke with Us Weekly about his controversial album title.
"You go to a party and white people are having more fun than anybody," Cannon told Us Weekly. "They know how to have a good time! I could have named the album 'Purple People Party Music' and you'd still get the same album, but it was just one of those things. You know, you deal with things like race, and people get uptight, so why not?"
Blackface started in the 1830s as a form of entertainment. According to black-face.com:
"Blackface makeup was either a layer of burnt cork on a layer of coca butter or black grease paint. In the early years exaggerated red lips were painted around their mouths, like those of today's circus clowns. In later years the lips were usually painted white or unpainted. Costumes were usually gaudy combinations of formal wear; swallowtail coats, striped trousers, and top hats.
"Minstrel show entertainment included imitating black music and dance and speaking in a 'plantation' dialect. The shows featured a variety of jokes, songs, dances and skits that were based on the ugliest stereotypes of African American slaves. From 1840 to 1890, minstrel shows were the most popular form of entertainment in America."
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