N.Y. assemblyman stands by blackface, Afro costume
ALBANY, N.Y. — A veteran New York Assemblyman on Monday stood by his decision to wear blackface makeup, an Afro wig and a basketball jersey to a costume party in the face of criticism he called “political correctness to the absurd.”
Democratic Assemblyman Dov Hikind wrote on his blog Monday that he doesn't understand the criticism swirling around Albany and doesn't know why anyone would be offended by the costume he wore to a party he recently held at his home in Brooklyn to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Purim.
Hikind hired a makeup artist and wore an orange basketball jersey, sunglasses and an Afro at the celebration that traditionally includes costumes.
“I am intrigued that anyone who understands Purim — or for that matter understands me — would have a problem with this,” said Hikind, a Jewish leader in New York. “This is political correctness to the absurd. There is not a prejudiced bone in my body.”
There was no immediate comment from the Assembly's Democrat majority where Hikind has long been a rare conservative voice over 30 years.
Earlier this month, Hikind criticized the fashion designer John Galliano, who was recently photographed in New York City dressing as a Hasid with a long jacket and curly sidelocks. Two years ago, Galliano was fired from Christian Dior after his anti-Semitic rant was caught on video.
Hikind demanded an explanation from Galliano for his costume.
“If it was just anyone else, I wouldn't know what to say. But considering who this guy is, considering his background and what he's said in the past, let him explain it to all of us: Are you mocking us?” Hikind told the New York Post.
In Albany, Hikind has championed some conservative and religion-based issues. In 2009, he opposed an early vote to legalize same-sex marriage “It is about what I believe God wants,” Hikind said then. “God doesn't flip-flop on an issue.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Rossi: At start, are Pens already finished?
- Morton, Pirates blank Red Sox in series opener
- Steelers’ Roethlisberger still hurting after hard hit from Ravens’ Upshaw
- Identical twins born at West Penn Hospital a rare medical marvel
- Vikings bar Peterson from all team activities
- Steelers notebook: RT Gilbert not in danger of losing his job
- City of Pittsburgh detective, 2 boys finalize adoption before judge
- Penguins notebook: Martin not concerned about expiring contract
- Big break in trooper ambush probe: suspect’s abandoned SUV
- Gorman: Quitting not the answer
- Pitt professor, poet earns prestigious MacArthur ‘genius grant’