Embattled Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam says he has learned why blackface is offensive, after he admitted to darkening his face decades ago as part of a Michael Jackson costume.
The Virginia Democrat spoke with CBS News about a racism scandal that’s engulfing his nascent administration, and said he had learned much about white privilege and race since the scandal erupted.
“Well, several things, starting with I was born in white privilege and that has implications to it,” Northam told CBS News host Gayle King. “It is much different the way a white person such as myself is treated in this country versus –”
King interrupted to ask whether Northam had realized before the scandal that he had been born into white privilege.
“I knew I was, Miss King,” Northam said, “but I didn’t realize really the powerful implications of that, and again talking to a lot of friends that has come crystal clear to me this week. I have also learned why the use of blackface is so offensive and, yes, I knew it in the past.”
.@GovernorVA @RalphNortham says he’s “not going anywhere.” He plans to stay in office, in spite of a racist photo printed in his medical school yearbook.@gayleking sat down with the Democratic governor who still faces calls to resign: https://t.co/jcCcmmkENi pic.twitter.com/B6ORmlihhv
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) February 11, 2019