Popular blogger gets death threats after mother paints child with 'blackface' in tribute to football hero
Published 26/08/2016 | 10:42
A popular blogger has received death threats after a controversial photo of a child’s blackface tribute to his football idol was shared on her Facebook page.
A mother painted her son’s face black, dressed him in a football shirt and gave him a dreadlock wig as a tribute to Australian Football League star Nic Naitanui for his school’s Book Week.
She posted it on Australian blogger Constance Hall’s Facebook page, sparking an online backlash from critics who deemed it ‘racist’.
“So many politically correct extremists these days,” the mother wrote in the now-deleted Facebook post. “He is pasty white and if I just sent him in a wig and footy gear no one would know who he was.
Blackface is wrong, is racist and should never ever ever even be contemplated. A bit difficult it seems to... https://t.co/UPvysjJ64I— Iwona Siniarska (@lilmissplanet)
How many times do you have to be told #blackface is racist before you stop doing it?— Khalegend (@khalegend) August 26, 2016
“So I grew a set of balls and painted my boy brown. After being told by everyone not to do it, my son won the parade!”
After the photo went viral, the mother wrote on her Facebook page that she has been “called every single name under the sun, had my words twisted into other people's negative interpretations”.
Indigenous rapper Adam Briggs was one of many who criticised the post, he wrote: “Again and again. This is the attitude we face every moment.
“This was such an obviously reckless, racist thing to do - I thought it was a set up.”
Blogger Hall has received death threats after the post appeared on her Facebook page and was also accused of ‘shaming’ the woman who posted the photo.
She deleted the post, explaining: “This is not a place for posts that can hurt people.”
In an emotional follow-up post, she added: “I'm in a hotel room bathroom crying my eyes out on the floor. They are so puffy that I can barely see through them.
“I didn't think I was shaming her at all, I clearly stated that I don't believe she is racist at all, she has a beautiful son with a great hero. I just don't think we should paint our kids in blackface if it offends and hurts people.
“Now I have never received so much abuse in my life. I am being called a c**t ... I have received death threats, I ban them and they start new accounts, they are relentless. I have been called every name under the sun, called a fake, told that I am too big for my boots over and over again.
“Please stop sending me these horrible messages and writing these things on my wall, I am feeling really broken and alone right now and I don't have the strength for this.”
Meanwhile, AFL star Naitanui has also responded to the controversy, adding he would love to meet the child.
“The young bloods innocence merely attempting to emulate his hero hurts my heart,” he said in a statement. “Especially when that hero is me.”
And at the end of the day I genuinely admire the kid for looking up to me.Would love to meet the little champion reader @WestCoastEagles— Nic Naitanui (@RealNaitanui) August 26, 2016
It added: “It’s a shame racism coexists in an environment where our children should be nurtured not tortured because they are unaware of the painful historical significance ‘blackface’ has had previously on the oppressed.
“I don’t believe the mother had any intention to cause harm, just wanted her kid to simply be “Nic Nat”, however may reflect on this and choose an alternate method next time #educationisthekey #evenivelearnt.”