Blackface Apology – Assemblyman Dov Hikind Explains Going Black for Purim

The lawmaker was trying to embody a basketball star from the 70s

By on February 26th, 2013 12:32 GMT

Democrat New York Assemblyman Dov Hikind is being accused of racial insensitivity for posting a photo of his Purim getup online.

He donned a blackface for the Jewish holiday, trying to embody a 70s typical basketball star by wearing an Afro wig and orange apparel.

"The history of the blackface minstrel show is something deeply painful in the African American community. It brings back the memories of African Americans being reduced to 'buffoonery' just to gain access to the entertainment industry," says Assemblyman Karim Camara.

Camara, heading the NYS Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Legislative Caucus, mentions being “shocked and outraged” by the lawmaker's faux pas.

However, the assemblyman has a reputation of standing up for minorities, fighting racism, discrimination and anti-Semitism in the past.

“To anyone who was offended, I’m sorry. That was not the intention. […] I was just, I think, I was trying to emulate, you know, maybe some of these basketball players.

“Someone gave me a uniform, someone gave me the hair of the actual, you know, sort of a black basketball player,” Hikind responds, according to the New York Post.

Do you think his costume is offensive? Don't forget to leave your response in the comments section.

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