Good Morning America anchor Amy Robach was under fire after she used a racial slur during a broadcast. During the Monday broadcast, Robach, who was filling in for Robin Roberts, used the words “colored people” while speaking about diversity or lack thereof in Hollywood.
During the segment, Amy Robach used the term “colored people” when talking about the criticism Hollywood has received by giving most roles to Caucasian actors.
Specifically, the segment dealt with the casting of mixed actress Zendaya as the reimagined Mary Jane in the upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming. As the Inquisitr reported, many fans were up in arms over the casting because the character was originally Caucasian in the comic books.
However, the attention was taken off of the discussion once the anchor used that term. Robach was blasted on the internet after saying, “[I]n what one might assume should be a role reserved for colored people.”
— Us Weekly (@usweekly) August 22, 2016
The response was immediate.
@HNNAfrica wtf, she’s too young to even have that one in her vocabulary! Nice job Amy “cracker” Robach
— CarolinaGirl (@arendabdoory) August 22, 2016
— Sara Hammel (@sarawriting) August 22, 2016
— FABWP (@_fabwp) August 22, 2016
While some people don’t understand why this term is such a huge deal, one can argue that GMA could potentially lose sponsors over the use of the racial slur, which means money problems. While no one has announced that they’re pulling advertisements, the Good Morning America anchor is trying to get ahead of the scandal by apologizing for her use of the term “colored people.”
— Maya World Peace (@MayaMylesA) August 22, 2016
@arobach Small tidbit of advice. I wouldn’t use the word ‘colored’ on air again. Could generate unneeded backlash… Happy Monday Gorgeous
— Roscoe Jenkins (@RJTweets469) August 22, 2016
— Rebeka Joneab (@rebesfemina) August 22, 2016
She didn’t answer any of the tweets directed at her, but she might offer up another explanation in addition to the public apology. In the statement, Amy Robach said that it was “a mistake” and “not at all a reflection of how I feel or speak in my everyday life.”
In a 2014 NPR article, journalist Kee Malesky wrote about the history of certain phrases and how they have changed throughout time. In the article titled “The Journey From ‘Colored’ To ‘Minorities’ To ‘People Of Color’,” Malesky noted that the term colored people “peaked in books published in 1970. For ‘minorities,’ the top-ranked year was 1997. Since then, the term has steadily declined but continues to significantly outstrip the use of ‘people of color,’ which reached its apex in 2003.”
It goes on to note a 1988 essay publish in the New York Times about the history of the term. Back then, the article stated that the phrase was “taken as a slur, even when not so intended, and so this term — first used with this meaning in 1611 by the historian John Speed as ‘coloured countenances’ — is better replaced by its synonym as noun and adjective, black.”
As USA Today states, in 1904, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People was launched in an effort to advance people of color. Although time has changed the way people feel about this term, the group has decided to keep the name due to its rich history.
Do you think Amy Robach did the right thing by apologizing?
[Photo by RW/MediaPunch/IPX/AP Images]