- ‘The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance’ dazzles with a timely tale 1 Month Ago
- The DOJ emailed a white nationalist blog post to immigration judges 1 Month Ago
- The Amazon rainforest is on fire–and people are using memes to cope Today 4:11 PM
- Microsoft contractors listened in on Xbox users Today 2:15 PM
- Anti-vaxxer assaults pro-vaccine lawmaker on Facebook Live (updated) Today 2:15 PM
- Oreos licked by singer Lewis Capaldi are being auctioned off on eBay Today 1:54 PM
- Zach Braff predicted Sean Spicer would be on ‘Dancing With the Stars’ 2 years ago Today 1:38 PM
- NYPD sergeant who watched Eric Garner die punished with lost vacation days Today 1:27 PM
- Brie Larson haters have a meltdown over a joke about Thor’s hammer Today 1:26 PM
- This comedian attempted to make fun of women on Twitter—and it did not go over well Today 1:04 PM
- Logan Paul wants to help the Amazon rainforest Today 12:36 PM
- Nutaku announces redesign and filters for LGBTQ porn games Today 12:25 PM
- This video of dozens of inflatable mattresses taking off in the wind is perfect Today 12:20 PM
- Reddit mods restore Tiananmen Square image after censorship claims Today 12:18 PM
- Billie Eilish parody takes dad jokes to a whole new level Today 11:52 AM
People on Twitter are furious that Madonna posted photos to Instagram of her Black children posing with slices of watermelon.
The singer posted three photos on her Instagram story this week of her Black daughters, Complex reported. The photos are no longer available on Madonna’s story, as Instagram stories are only available for 24 hours after the user posts them. But the series, which has been reposted to Twitter, shows her twins Esther and Stella, who were adopted from Malawi in 2017.
In separate photos, the girls are seen posing against a wall in the distance, smiling and with their arms raised. A slice of watermelon is held close to the camera to project the illusion of a skirt or a dress on the girls.
The girls, who were 5 years old at the time of their adoption, look happy—but are likely unaware that they’re at the center of a photo with racist implications. The watermelon was historically regarded as a symbol of emancipation for the Black community and has over time been positioned in cartoons and messages as a racist attack on the Black community.
As the Atlantic wrote in 2014, “Southern whites, threatened by blacks’ newfound freedom, responded by making the fruit a symbol of black people’s perceived uncleanliness, laziness, childishness, and unwanted public presence. This racist trope then exploded in American popular culture.”
Twitter users condemned Madonna for the photos, especially since it’s not the first time she’s been accused of making racist comments about her kids.
Someone called me a moron (prolly her stan) for calling Madonna ignorant, lol. First of all, she could have used any other fruit BESIDES watermelon. Why not apples, or grapes? They aesthetic too. Why watermelon? There is a watermelon stereotype with black people.— The Ghetto Buddha 🐉 (@MamaSophia666) July 16, 2019
Of Madonna has enough art sense to hang that Picasso, she certainly knows a watermelon skirt on a black child is offensive.— P (@nabiaxp) July 16, 2019
Some also pointed out that Madonna only shared photos of her two Black children even though she has six children, two of whom are white.
Madonna uses her black kids for performance racism, that's how she stays relevant— Juvie's Place (@CuzDubSaidSo) July 15, 2019
If Madonna would've posted all of her kids behind watermelon it wouldn't be a problem but the fact that she chose only the black kids shows how ignorant she really is.— The Ghetto Buddha 🐉 (@MamaSophia666) July 15, 2019
Madonna got her black kids posing with watermelon on social media in 2019? pic.twitter.com/7QQMJ2k4o2— hi my name is... (@nicryen) July 15, 2019
As Complex notes, in 2014, Madonna wrote “Dis[N-word]” alongside a photo of her son. Following public outrage, she apologized and deleted the post.
- Controversial #ICEBae divides social media
- A police union is urging its officers to post ‘The Punisher’ logo
- YouTuber Emily Hartridge killed in electric scooter crash
Got five minutes? We’d love to hear from you. Help shape our journalism and be entered to win an Amazon gift card by filling out our 2019 reader survey.
Samira Sadeque is a New York-based journalist reporting on immigration, sexual violence, and mental health, and will sometimes write about memes and dinosaurs too. Her work also appears in Reuters, NPR, and NBC among other publications. She graduated from Columbia Journalism School, and her work has been nominated for SAJA awards. Follow: @Samideque