We’ve said it time and again on this website that there is never a reason for a white person to don blackface makeup, no matter if it was ten minutes or ten years ago. GOP Illinois state Senate candidate Hal Patton is now apologizing for wearing a getup in his attempt to look like a rapper.
The Belleville News-Democrat published a report Monday (June 18) that featured a photo of Patton from a decade ago in a bandana and football jersey that was received by what the publication referred to as Democratic operatives. Patton, who is currently the mayor of Edwardsville, apologized in a statement for the photo but weirdly referenced Run DMC as his inspiration, which as Hip-Hop fans know didn’t rock bandanas of any sort.
“There was never any intention for it to be an act of racism or racial commentary. It was a rapper,” Patton said in an interview. “At the time, Run DMC and others were rappers. That was the look. I hate to say I regret a Halloween costume, in the sense it wasn’t meant to make a statement about anything in politics or anything in race relations or anything in that nature.”
He added, “I’ve certainly live my life above board and with the best principles that you can. I have lots of friends from every race and every country — that is how I’ve always lived my life.”
In a statement to the BND on Monday, Patton further explained the costume, which was worn at an annual couples Halloween party, where couples try to pair their outfits.
Patton doubled down on the apologies, saying to the publication that he regrets the outfit choice but used it as a rallying point for his campaign, slamming Democrats for using the photo to ruin his image.
The way we see it, 10 years ago or not, Patton had to know that in some way that donning blackface is just offensive and hopefully he’s learned a valuable lesson.
Photo: Unknown/Belleville News-Democrat