Comedians Jimmy Kimmel and Joy Behar have both worn blackface in the past — and both used their platforms to lecture Republican South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott on racism.
Kimmel, who wore blackface in a 1990s sketch to parody NBA player Karl Malone, appeared to mock the fact that Scott was the only black Republican senator. He then turned the attack directly on Scott, suggesting that he was intentionally ignoring the obvious. (RELATED: Jimmy Kimmel Apologizes ‘To Those Who Were Genuinely Hurt Or Offended’ By Blackface Sketch)
“Every black Republican Senator got together to let the American people know the Republican Party isn’t racist,” Kimmel said. “And then Tim promptly returned to the sensory deprivation egg.”
How many of the 50 Democratic Senators are black? @JimmyKimmel on @SenatorTimScott: “Every black Republican Senator got together to let the American people know the Republican Party isn’t racist….And then Tim promptly returned to the sensory deprivation egg” #Kimmel (Answer: 2) pic.twitter.com/3OgrnZI87s
— Brent Baker (@BrentHBaker) April 30, 2021
Behar, who donned blackface as part of a “beautiful African woman” costume she wore for Halloween at 29 — lashed out at Scott during Thursday’s broadcast of “The View” on ABC. She argued that he “didn’t understand” the difference between living in a racist country and systemic racism. (RELATED: Joy Behar Claims Tim Scott ‘Doesn’t Understand’ The Difference Between A Racist Country And Systemic Racism)
“Now, Tim Scott, he does not seem to understand — and a lot of them don’t seem to understand the difference between a racist country and a systemic — systemic racism. They don’t seem to get the difference,” Behar said, arguing that even if the United States was not a “racist country,” there was still a problem with systemic racism that needed to be addressed.
“The fact that Tim Scott cannot acknowledge this is appalling. How can you go out there and say that when you just said two minutes ago you were the object and the victim of discrimination? Then he says this is not a racist country. At least acknowledge that there is systemic racism,” Behar continued. “That’s what I wanted to hear from him and he didn’t say it.”
Both Behar and Kimmel were reacting to Scott’s speech — which followed President Joe Biden’s address Wednesday — during which he said he did not believe that America was a racist nation and promised to keep working for a way forward.
“Believe me, I know our healing is not finished. In 2015, after the shooting of Walter Scott, I wrote a bill to fund body cameras. Last year, after the deaths of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, I built an even bigger police reform proposal. But my Democratic colleagues blocked it. I extended an olive branch. I offered them amendments. But Democrats used the filibuster to block the debate from even happening,” Scott said in his speech. “My friends across the aisle seemed to want the issue more than they wanted a solution. But I’m still working. I’m still hopeful.”