Latest Homeland Security Gaffe: Blackface Worker’s Award


The latest Homeland Security Department blunder, reports the Washington Post: At an Immigration and Customs Enforcement Halloween party last week, agency chief Julie Myers was on a three-judge panel that gave a “most original costume” award to a white employee dressed in prison garb. He wore dreadlocks and dark makeup, making him look African American or Hispanic, says the Washington Post. Myers had her picture taken with the winner. An ICE spokesman said the photo was destroyed, apparently after complaints from offended employees.

Now Myers says it is clear that “a few of the costumes were inappropriate and offensive.” She reminded employees to take diversity training online. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said, “People do dumb things.” The Post cited “a law enforcement agency making fun of the people it’s imprisoning for immigration violations at a time when ICE is expanding its daily detention population, from about 20,000 two years ago to 28,000 this year.”


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