An Aboriginal mother has published photos of her daughter in ‘whiteface’ in a move she says she hopes highlights double standards that are inflaming racial debates in Australia.
Queenslander Bec Bee said she was inspired to make the controversial statement after watching the furore surrounding a young boy who dressed up as West Coast Eagles footballer Nic Naitunui, complete with blackened skin.
Ms Bee said the little boy had dressed as Naitunui as a tribute to his idol but would carry the scars of the nationwide blackface controversy for the rest of his life.
“The little boy in the centre of last week's book week did not suffer from racism or discrimination, he idolised a man who has achieved great successes even during pain, when most adult would have caved and collapsed into states of depression,” she wrote.
“Unfortunately now this little boy who has been shown by the dark skinned community that his admiration for a black man is unacceptable and has learnt racism!
“Do we support educating or do we do reverse racism and shun a future adult.
“His childhood experience will have scarred him now!”
Ms Bee said, while accusations of racism had been thrown at the boy and his mother by many people, his actions showed that he actually thought it was “cool to be black”.
Along with her lengthy statement, Ms Bee posted two images of her daughter, one of which showed her with whitened skin.
“Not once did anyone say anything when I painted my black daughter white 3 years ago. We need to stop the double standards, a hero is a hero!” Ms Bee wrote.
She said it was important to continue to explain the painful history of Aboriginal people following European settlement in Australia but that it must be done without divisive double standards.
The Nic Naitunui controversy was the second racially charged controversy to rage around Australian rules football in just a week.
The debate began when a mother proudly posted a photo of her son to blogger Constance Hall’s Facebook page in celebration of a Book Week award he reportedly won for his outfit.
But, posted just a week after the Eddie Betts banana throwing scandal, the post instead kicked off another round of heated debate, with both Ms Hall and the mother later revealing that had been subject of threats and abuse from people on both sides of the argument.
A Perth father also has shared an image of his son dressed as Ben Cousins, complete with white powder on his nose, as a way to urge the community to "lighten up" after last week's Nic Naitanui 'blackface' scandal.
In an almost polar opposite response to the Perth mother who became too scared to leave her home when she gave her son 'blackface' to look like his AFL idol Nic Naitanui, the dad has been treated to more than 18,000 likes for his son's photo on Facebook.
The dad posted his son's picture online and slammed the public for its treatment of the little Nic Nat boy.
"To put all the butt hurt people at ease - (my son) had no idea why he had flour on his nose and I told him to act silly and I got the pic," the father posted.
"It's a pi** take because of the Nic Nat issue - lighten up."