Local internet personalities, the Wackyboys, have released a new, longer version of their original blackface clip, which surfaced two weeks ago. The extended video, uploaded to their Facebook page and official YouTube channel, is almost 11 minutes long – fully edited with graphics and sound effects.
Soon after receiving backlash for their first video, which featured themselves in blackface imitating a popular meme of Ghanaian men dancing with a coffin, they removed it from their Facebook page. They also deleted photos from their Instagram account.
In the most recent video published on June 15th, they can be seen getting dressed, putting on make-up, and heading out to the streets. They asked several pedestrians to join them in the dance, and followed others around with their prop coffin.
Being a nuisance is not the problem here, though. Their use of blackface is the issue. Some of those who took part in a discussion regarding the first blackface incident talked about how we should give them a chance to learn and grow from their mistakes. Many were happy that they had chosen to delete their posts, and had issued apologies to those who spoke out via private messages. Those same people have reached out to me again, and this time, they are overcome by even greater disappointment and anger.
Several comments on the video are calling out the group for racism. One commenter called the video “messed up.” One posted a variant of the “That’s Racist” meme. Some tried to explain the situation, as many others had done before. Another commented: “This is discrimination. This is not entertainment…” and attached a link to an Apple Daily article about blackface. Another referenced the previous incident, and then said: “…At a time when we are fighting against all the injustices we have endured, you choose to make a mockery of us as black people? I don’t care how funny, or amusing the original video is, you could have done your skit/video without the use of blackface…”
Last time around, I said that these are times to educate, and urged people not to outright cancel them. This time, I can’t understand the reasoning. They had the chance to learn from their mistakes. They even went as far as to delete photos and videos. However, yet another video has been posted, this time longer and fully edited, meaning they had time to think about it, but chose to put up the video anyway.
BlackLivesMatter protests are currently unfolding in the United States and other parts of the world, including one in Taipei that we covered just a few days ago. These protests were sparked by the killings of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and countless others. Bearing this in mind, the Wackyboys’ decision to post this new video is particularly insensitive, especially since people have already tried to educate them on the history behind blackface, as well as the discrimination the black community faces on a daily basis.