Which I kind of thought was the point of Fashion Police, but I digress. Zendaya apparently was at the Oscars. Why? I do not know, but she was there, and she had some very beautiful dreadlocs.
During a segment on the 87th Annual Academy Awards, the E! personality reportedly sniped of Zendaya’s dreadlocked hair, “I feel like she smells like patchouli oil… or maybe weed.”
Okay. So, if she had said this about a white girl with try hard dreads, I would be on board. But this comes across very disrespectful and a bit racist. Zendaya agrees.
“There is a fine line between what is funny and disrespectful,” Zendaya wrote. “Someone said something about my hair at the Oscars that left me in awe. Not because I was relishing in rave outfit reviews, but because I was hit with ignorant slurs and pure disrespect.”
“To say that an 18-year-old woman with locs must smell of patchouli oil or ‘weed’ is not only a large stereotype but outrageously offensive,” continued the star, who was, in fact, celebrated by many outlets for her look and called a “breakout style star” by Vogue for her appearance. “I don’t usually feel the need to respond to negative things but certain remarks cannot go unchecked.”
Zendaya went on to name people she loves and admires who all sport dreadlocks, including her father and brother, celebrated Selma director Ava DuVernay, Waiting to Exhale author Terry McMillan, and Grammy-nominated singer Ledisi.
“Do you want to know what [they all] have in common?” Zendaya explained. “Locs. None of which smell of marijuana. There is already harsh criticism of African American hair in society without the help of ignorant people who choose to judge others base on the curl of their hair. My wearing my hair in locs on an Oscar red carpet was to showcase them in a positive light, to remind people of color tha tour hair is good enough.”
“To me locs are a symbol of strength and beauty, almost like a lion’s mane,” she added. “I suggest some people should listen to India Arie‘s ‘I Am Not My Hair’ and contemplate a little before opening your mouth so quickly to judge.”
So, then, Giuliana went to Twitter to try and apologize, but it didn’t really come across.
“Dear @Zendaya, I’m sorry I offended you and others,” she wrote in the late hours of Monday evening. “I was referring to a bohemian chic look. Had NOTHING to do with race and NEVER would!!!”
I can see where she was going with the remarks, but she probably shouldn’t have.