Racism is running rampart all over the world. According to reports, a group of French friends wanted to have a “negro evening,” so they gathered together, slathered their faces in black paint, grabbed afro wigs and made a night of it. What’s most shocking is that there were off duty officers at the party, partaking in the racist antics.
Someone from the party took it upon themselves to post the shocking photos on Facebook. Before the photos were taken down, several screenshots were captured. In some of the shots, you can see various partygoers posing with bananas, mimicking monkeys.
“Someone I know pointed out to me the existence of these photos on the Facebook account of a friend of hers,” Claudy Siar, former Interministerial Delegate for Equal Opportunities for France told BFMTV. “Before me, she called him and expressed his shock. Taken by surprise, his friend downplayed the facts, arguing that they ‘just wanted to have fun’ with friends and “make a n-gga evening.’ She immediately removed the photos, but the screenshots were already made. Convinced that there was not a hoax, I decided to make them available.”
What’s funny is that France likes to pride itself on being a country that doesn’t fall into racism, however, there’s been more racist headlines around France in recent years than ever. Remember 2014 Miss France’s racist attacks online? After the biracial beauty’s win, many critics called her every racist term in the book and they even started a hashtag to express their hate, #shame.
According to Paris CNN, France “is a country which, unlike the U.S. and Britain, has purposefully limited freedom of speech in order to criminalize verbal violence and incitement to hatred in all its forms.” However, France is also a place where the Black justice minister Christiane Taubira is welcomed by a child with the words “Hey, guenon [monkey], go and eat bananas!”
Racism is everywhere and France is clearly not exempt. What sticks out the most for me about this story is that this party was behind closed doors and if these offensive photos would have never seen the light of day, would it have been an out of sight, out of mind?