web analytics
August 4, 2015 / 19 Av, 5775
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post


Home » News & Views
REBOUND

Hikind Defends His Blackface Hoop Player Purim Shtick

Is a Purim costume of a stereotyped black basketball player a racist slur, especially when a Jewish politician is behind the mask? NY legislator Hikind says it was “lots of fun.” No offense intended.
Dov Hikind in his black basketball costume for Purim - fun or offensive?

Dov Hikind in his black basketball costume for Purim - fun or offensive?
Photo Credit: Dov Hikind's Facebook page

Brooklyn New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind had “a lot of fun” by dressing up as a black basketball player on Purim, but now that the party is over, so is the fun.

He invited a professional makeup artist to his home on Purim to help him with his costume, complete with an afro wig, sunglasses, an orange jersey and – of course – brown face paint.

“I was just, I think, I was trying to emulate, you know, maybe some of these basketball players. Someone gave me a uniform, someone gave me the hair of the actual, you know, sort of a black basketball player,” Mr. Hikind explained to the Politicker website. “It was just a lot of fun.… The fun for me is when people come in and don’t recognize me.”

Dozens of people streamed in and out of his house to enjoy the Purim party, where his wife dressed up as a devil, which is probably what many people, black and white, are calling him today.

Jews dress up as just about anyone on Purim, from Arabs, to Haredi Jews, political figures, clowns, priests – everything. But recreating a stereotype of blacks is the farthest point away from being politically correct, especially for a Jewish politician,

Hikind sees no problem with his costume.

“I can’t imagine anyone getting offended,” he told Politicker. “You know, anyone who knows anything about Purim knows that if you walk throughout the community, whether it’s Williamsburg, Boro Park, Flatbush, Forest Hills, Kew Gardens Hills, people get dressed up in, you name it, you know, in every kind of dress-up imaginable.

“Purim, you know, everything goes and it’s all done with respect. No one is laughing, no one is mocking.”

Hikind told a WCBS 880 reporter that it “never crossed my mind for a second” that the costume might be offensive, and added, “If I was black, on Purim I would have made my face look like I was white.”

The New York Times reported Monday that Assembly Democrat, Deborah J. Glick of Manhattan, took to Twitter to state her objections to the costume and wrote, “Assembly member Dov Hikind in blackface was beyond offensive. A Purim party shouldn’t be cover for insensitivity.” City Councilman Mark Weprin posted on Twitter a simple question: “What was Dov thinking?”

About the Author: Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu is a graduate in journalism and economics from The George Washington University. He has worked as a cub reporter in rural Virginia and as senior copy editor for major Canadian metropolitan dailies. Tzvi wrote for Arutz Sheva for several years before joining the Jewish Press.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

9 Responses to “Hikind Defends His Blackface Hoop Player Purim Shtick”

  1. The less said about this the better. Just let it blow over.

  2. And yet, this is the same Dov Hikind who was reported by the JP a couple of weeks ago as being quite offended when John Galiano dressed up as a Chasid. Another politician/hypocrite. Nobody but a moron wears blackface, or dresses up as a Chasid to "repair" his reputation with Jews.

  3. Mildred Bilt says:

    Politician? What happened to political correctness? Political sensitvity for his constituents? Political tact? So Brooklyn now has the distinction of sending a witless blockhead to the NY State Assembly. Reflects rather badly on the voters.

  4. Get your hearts off your sleeves, ladies.

  5. Grace Acosta says:

    It doesn't matter how "innocent" his intentions were. He lives in America, and should be aware of how problematic his choice was. When you accidentally stomp on someone's foot, the polite thing to do is to apologise!

  6. Mr. Hikind, this is extremely offensive and insensitive thing to do. You said it yourself, "it never crossed your mind for a second". That alone shows your insensitivity to what you did and the fact that your didin't care how African American's would be offended. Now that you've done it and you see that it was offensive, are you going to apologize?

  7. Bernhard Rosenberg · Senior Rabbi at Congregation Beth El.

    ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. Hikind is a politician who while he used bad judgment , I DOUBT INTENTIONALLY SOUGHT such bad publicity and outrage. He is not anti-black and this is becoming an issue that anti-Semites will grab onto. Stop the bad publicity. RABBI DR. BERNHARD ROSENBERG

  8. Miriam Driker Karp says:

    of course it was offensive, wouldn't we be offended if a Christian or Black wore a stereotypical hareidi costume on Halloween, very likely. What was he thinking — or not thinking?

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Firefighters put out fire in firebombed car near Beit Hanina on August 3, 2105.
Jewish Woman Severely Burned, 2 More Injured in Yet Another Arab Firebombing Attack
Latest News Stories
Kayaking on Jordan River

Israelis enjoy kayaking in the Jordan river in Northern Israel on August 2, 2015, as temperature reached 47 degrees Celcius in some parts of Israel.

Representative Kathleen Rice (D-NY-04)

New York Democratic Congresswoman Kathleen Rice will vote against the Iran deal.

Firefighters put out fire in firebombed car near Beit Hanina on August 3, 2105.

Arab terrorists threw firebombs at a Jerusalem car, severely burning the driver and two more people.

Some Israelis seem to have forgotten no one has yet tracked down the murderers of Ali Bawabsheh.

Americans oppose the Iran deal, and only a slight majority of Democrats support it.

Chuck Schumer’s office has received more than 10,000 phone calls over the past two weeks, all of them from groups and individuals opposed to the Iran nuclear deal.

Kerry reassures the Gulf States, who are gouging him for more arms and to force Israel out of Judea and Samaria.

Its so hot, the Arab threat to drive us into the sea don’t sound half bad…

No one was injured from the mortar fire that apparently strayed during clashes.

The gang attacked a Haredi man and then a religious couple with brass knuckles and a knife. The woman recited the Shema prayer.

The Muslims preacher is a permanent fixture on the Temple Mount to incite Muslims but finally has been arrested.

The “friendly” game was cancelled after the fans took over the soccer field.

Late PM Yitzhak Rabin’s granddaughter has announced her launch into politics.

Israeli soldiers deployed at the Gaza security fence shot over the heads of Arabs who had approached the no-go zone Monday, Palestinian Authority media reported. No one was injured. Arabs frequently approached the security fence, usually with intentions to infiltrate into Israel or to carry out a terrorist attack on the spot. Palestinian Authority media […]

Iranian double talk is clear when a top official praises the nuclear deal but warns of no IAEA inspector access to military sites.

More Articles from Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.

Kerry reassures the Gulf States, who are gouging him for more arms and to force Israel out of Judea and Samaria.

IDF forces on Golan Heights.

No one was injured from the mortar fire that apparently strayed during clashes.

The gang attacked a Haredi man and then a religious couple with brass knuckles and a knife. The woman recited the Shema prayer.

The Muslims preacher is a permanent fixture on the Temple Mount to incite Muslims but finally has been arrested.

The “friendly” game was cancelled after the fans took over the soccer field.

His new book is called “Palestine” a features a cover showing a map of “what used to be Israel” and with the word “Palestine” plastered over it.

As Secretary of State, she did know what to say about the Goldstone Report that condemned Israel for alleged war crimes.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/hikind-defends-his-blackface-hoop-player-purim-shtick/2013/02/25/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: