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Huntsville residents react to Gov. Kay Ivey blackface apology

WAAY 31 went to downtown Huntsville and spoke with some people on their thoughts on the situation.

Posted: Aug 30, 2019 7:57 PM
Updated: Aug 31, 2019 9:33 AM

Race is almost always a topic people shy away from talking about on camera.

WAAY 31 went to downtown Huntsville to ask people how Alabama learns from its history and moves forward as a diverse community.

Courtesy of the office of Governor Kay Ivey

Downtown, we discussed race relation with a resident and visitors and we asked if Gov. Kay Ivey should resign from office, and got passionate answers on both sides.

Yvonne Flores, visiting Huntsville, "I think she should apologize to the African-American community and to the whole community because honestly let's face it, America is a diverse country"

"Racism is completely unacceptable. It is an attitude. It's the way people think", says Chris Bramon, who lives in Huntsville.

Michelle Flores was visitng Huntsville and told WAAY 31, “You want to ensure the appropriate officials knowledge and wisdom is there to represent the people impartially without bias."

Ivey went to Auburn University at a time when there was bias. This week Ivey admitted to wearing blackface as part of a college skit but said she doesn’t remember doing it. WAAY 31 asked people if the governor should face consequences for what she did more than 50 years ago.

"If she were accused and say I did do that, that is who I was in college..I've grown throughout the years...I think people would respect so much the action itself" said Michelle's sister, Yvonne Flores, tells WAAY 31.

"She needs to apologize for it, keep talking about it, explain the situation and let it go. I don't think she needs to quit," adds Bramon.

"It does impact the people's hope and trust considering today's time and the current administration and what's happening," adds Michelle.

It’s impossible to know what everyone thinks… but from the people we spoke with… their message was clear… what happened in our past, can not happen again.

“Sadly, everyone has some form of direct and indirect racism there. You just have to pay attention to what you're doing. But black face is demeaning to an entire race. It's wrong. Just wrong," adds Bramon.

Flores wants Ivey to know that, "Letting the African-American community know that you are there for them and not that person, reaching out to them would speak a lot more not only to that community but to the whole world".

Ivey has said she will not resign over this.

WAAY 31 reached out to the NAACP, which said it wants Ivey to step down.

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