Julianne Hough is continuing to face backlash for her recent blackface gaffe and may never be able to live it down. The 25 year-old dancer and actress claims to be utterly mortified and completely unaware that she had done anything wrong. That may be part of the problem.
Hough was just trying to have a little fun last weekend as she prepared for the Casamigos Tequila Halloween party in Beverly Hills. She and her friends thought they’d all dress up as characters from the Netflix series, ‘Orange Is The New Black.’ Hough herself was going to go as her favorite character, inmate Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren. She dressed the part in an orange jumpsuit, crazy hairstyle, a name tag, and brown makeup. Does anyone else hear the sound of a record scratch? The normally fair skinned Hough stepped out in full blackface makeup.
Critics were immediately outraged and took to their computers to protest Hough’s clear lack of judgement. The young starlet was quick to show remorse, taking to her Twitter account to issue an apology to anyone she may have offended. She claims that she was merely paying a compliment to the makers of the show, seeing that she is a huge fan. Clearly, she never intended to be disrespectful or demean anyone in any way. She did, however, acknowledge that the costume truly did hurt and offend people and offered her most sincere apologies.
Hough’s brother, 28 year-old Dancing With The Stars champion Derek Hough, was also quick to come to his sister’s defense. He was quoted as saying that it was not his little sister’s brightest moment and did a little more apologizing on behalf of Julianne. Hough’s Dancing With The Stars co-stars also chimed in with their praise of their former co-star and friend. They say that they all know Julianne personally and none of the negative she is getting as a result of her recent gaffe is warranted. They know that she would never intentionally hurt or offend anyone in this manner.
It would appear that blackface is the new morbid Halloween accessory of choice this year. Earlier this month two men in Florida posed for a picture depicting the recent Trayvon Martin scandal. One of the men was in full blackface with a fake bullet hole in his chest while the other, dressed as George Zimmerman, held a fake gun to his head. The cries of outrage were heard all around the U.S. as the photo immediately went viral.
A surprising defender of Hough’s inappropriate actions has been actress Laverne Cox, one of the stars of ‘Orange Is The New Black. Cox claims that she wasn’t offended at all. She went on to say that Hough, while clearly misguided, wasn’t dressing the part to be offensive. She is an obvious fan of the show and wanted to pay homage to her favorite character.
Julianne Hough may not be living down her blackface gaffe any time soon. It does appear that she meant it as a fun, creative Halloween costume and wasn’t out to make a spectacle of herself. She really does appear to regret the decision and has offered numerous apologies. It may be time to let the poor girl up off the mat.
By Mary Kay Love