In the Internet Age, entertainers sometimes feel the need to find some way to break through the 2-hour news cycle to grab attention for their new projects. Actor/rapper/comedian Nick Cannon’s approach has definitely caught people’s eyes, but his choice of using “whiteface” has some upset.
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While promoting his forthcoming album White People Party Music, the creator of MTV2′s Wild ‘N Out posted photos on Instagram of him made up as a white man. The first photo included the caption, “It’s official… I’m White!!! #WHITEPEOPLEPARTYMUSIC#Wppm in stores April 1st!!!!!!Dude Go Get It!!!Join The Party!!!!” Cannon also posted a video introducing his new character as Connor Smallnut.
The pictures and videos had some people online questioning why it was okay for Cannon to portray himself as white, but Caucasians wearing “blackface” is viewed as unacceptable. Critics even suggested that Cannon and the act of pretending to be white is racist.
Cannon later defended himself by posting another picture on Instagram of Robert Downey, Jr’s character from the comedy Tropic Thunder. He included the caption, “Shout out to @RobertDowneyJr This is one of my favorite characters of all time! Hilarious!!! There is a big difference between Humor and Hatred.”