A white California high school teacher showed up for classes in blackface last week as part of his Halloween costume. Social media footage of the teacher’s costume, and what appears to be an impromptu performance of him rapping about artificial intelligence and technology, has since gone viral and the teacher has reportedly been suspended. Ironically, he was dressed up as rapper Common Sense.
Sooooooooo… one of our WHITE teachers at mhs yesterday decided to paint his face so look like common the rapper yesterday. pic.twitter.com/1WudSddCLZ
— karrington (@karrington_kk) November 1, 2019
Twitter user @karrington_kk uploaded the above video on Friday with the caption “Sooooooooo… one of our WHITE teachers at mhs yesterday decided to paint his face so look like common the rapper yesterday.”
The unidentified teacher has since been suspended. According to a CNN report, the school district where he works issued a statement saying:
In a school community where we welcome learners and families from over 50 languages who represent cultures and religions throughout the world, and where our long-standing neighborhood, Sunnyhills, was established as the first city in the nation for planned integration, it hurts to know that this type of cultural insensitivity and lack of cultural awareness still hovers in the background.
It’s unclear at this time if the district intends to take further action.
The issue of blackface, especially around Halloween, isn’t a new one. The opposition to blackface, due to its racist nature, derogatory origins, and dehumanizing overtones, is well-documented. Hardly a day goes by where a politician, teacher, or celebrity doesn’t get caught up in a whirlwind of trouble over some years-old image of them in blackface ending up on social media.
And here you have an educator showing up to work in 2019, wearing blackface like it’s the 1950s, rapping about the future:
Opportunities limitless, possibilities senseless, what will you do? Millions of people, not enough to eat, what will we do? With AI, Microsoft technology, the future is up to you, you can do it. With AI. The future will blow your mind.
You can’t make this stuff up.