Nick Cannon is coming down on Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel for wearing blackface in the past to portray people of color in skits. We’ve got the offending pics.
With Virginia politicians embroiled in blackface scandals, TV host Nick Cannon is bringing up instances of two longtime late night talk show hosts doing the same thing in the past for laughs. He took to Instagram on Feb. 10 and showed clips of both Jimmy Fallon, 44, and Jimmy Kimmel, 51, in past comedy skits dressed not just in blackface but back hands and in Kimmel’s case, full body black. That happened 20 years ago in 1999 when he was playing NBA star Karl Malone during a skit on Comedy Central’s The Man Show. Fallon donned blackface and hands for a Chris Rock impersonation during his Saturday Night Live days and now Nick has come to remind both men that they’re guilty of wearing blackface and asking them to open up a dialogue on it.
“Are these your Kings of Late Night??? @JimmyFallon @JimmyKimmel you know I’m always on the side of the comedian and never pander to the sensitive, but I feel there needs to be some ‘truth & reconciliation’ discussions and teachable moments amongst our communities,” he wrote in the caption next to an Instagram post showing the offending videos. “I’m ready and willing for the discourse, so who wants to step up to the table first? In the meantime, I’ll just leave this right here. Tell the Jimmys to holla at me,” he added.
So far neither of the Jimmys have responded to Nick’s call out about donning dark makeup to portray black characters. But it was more than just once for Kimmel, who even dressed up as Oprah Winfrey for a 2001 sketch on The Man Show. While it was never right, the times have become more sensitive to the issue and Nick wants the men to reconcile their past blackface actions during comedy skits.
Nick also wants to remind folks that black people dressing up in “whiteface” is nothing like whites dressing in blackface. In another woke IG post just after his one about the late night hosts, he showed a black comedian dressed like a goofy white guy and wrote “Now y’all mad??” over it. “TEACHABLE MOMENT: America, There is NO such thing as ‘WhiteFace’ just like there is no such thing as ‘Reverse Racism.’ BlackFace and Racism are rooted in and are byproducts of the Institutionalized Oppression of a subjugated people. The racist and severely damaging ‘Jim Crow laws’ received its name from the Blackface minstrel movement of the 19th century and proceeds to cause pain to this day. A constant reminder that People of color are looked at as second class citizens in this country,” be began the caption.
“Now when you look up the standard definition of ‘Whiteface’ all you will find is an elite Ski Resort in Upstate NY. This is not a Tit-for-Tat argument. These are FACTS. These recent revealings of people painting themselves black or brown and speaking in broken slang in an attempt to be humorous or have fun; as if our culture is some sort of party trick or costume is unacceptable,” he continued, Nick concluded by writing, “Racism is when an ‘elite’ group uses its systemic power to enforce harm, hardship, and pain on others. If you don’t understand this, then it probably means you are or benefit from that elite group of privileged oppressors that we speak of.”