Hollywood girl-next-door favorite Jennifer Aniston, billed on this month’s cover of InStyle as “Babe Eternal,” has ignited a social media firestorm over her retouched magazine photographed face among those who think she looks too black for her little white good.
Honestly, this is one brouhaha that doesn’t need to be. Some people are just too ready to find fault and take offense.
Can you say — tanned?
Granted, the retouchers went a bit above and beyond with their retouching duties, creating a face that doesn’t look so much like Aniston as it does an Aniston Barbie doll. But that’s not the same as saying Aniston’s donned blackface — which is what some indeed are saying.
Or that magazine powers-who-be are somehow, in some way, racist — which again, is what some indeed are saying.
“I get that these covers are supposed to be channelling the glamour of yesteryear but that ‘glamour’ routinely marginalized women of color for white women (whether made tan or otherwise),” one commentator wrote, as noted by The Los Angeles Times. “Seeing Jennifer Aniston several shades darker than normal reminds me of that legacy. In 2019, if you want a brown-skinned woman on your cover, put a brown-skinned woman on your cover.”
“When we asked for south Asian representation in the media this isn’t what we meant,” said one.
“Very brown,” said another.
“Blackface,” said a third.
Come on, now.
You know public sensitivities have gone beyond rational when a girl can’t even sport a tan without someone popping out the race card and crying, “blackface.”
• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter, @ckchumley.
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