French School Accused Of ‘Blackwashing’ Student Photos To Fake Diversity

Some white students in the original portrait were digitally altered to appear black.

Students gather to discuss their academic program.
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Some white students in the original portrait were digitally altered to appear black.

An art school in Lyon, France, is under fire after a student group photo was digitally altered to darken the skin tones of several white students to make them appear black.

Administrators at the Emile Cohl School in Lyon are accused of “blackwashing” the photo to fake the appearance of ethnic diversity at the mostly-white institution, The Local France reported.

The school reportedly wants to open a branch in Los Angeles, and the group photo was going to be used to advertise Emile Cohl in the United States in a bid to seek funding.

School Dumped U.S. Ad Agency That Altered Photo

A spokesman for the Emile Cohl School denied accusations of “blackwashing” and apologized for the debacle.

The school also denied “any intention to manipulate reality” and said it cut ties with the U.S. advertising agency that had digitally altered the photo.

Critics say the artificial darkening of white students to mimic a falsely racially diverse student body is laughable because no one who travels to the South of France would be surprised to find that the city of Lyon (population: 495,000) is predominantly white. The same line of thinking would apply to those expecting significant racial diversity should they elect to study in rural China, or any other nation with similar demographic constituencies.

This issue of promoting ethnic diversity at any cost — even if the “diversity” has to be faked or forced — has become a flash point in the ongoing and controversial debate over affirmative action programs.

In August 2018, the U.S. Department of Justice sided with a group of Asian-American students who claimed they were discriminated against when they were rejected by Harvard University, Fox News reported.

Admission to Harvard is notoriously rigorous, but Asians have long claimed that they are held to a higher standard because Harvard wants to artificially limit Asian representation in the student body in order to promote ethnic diversity and maintain ethnic quotas.

DOJ: Harvard Discriminates Against Asians

In court papers, the Department of Justice sided with the Asian students, saying they “presented compelling evidence that Harvard’s use of race unlawfully discriminates against Asian-Americans.”

Harvard University has acknowledged that it uses race as a factor in its admissions process for affirmative-action purposes, but claims it does not discriminate against Asians.

Meanwhile, the DOJ says after reviewing all the evidence, Harvard “has failed to carry its demanding burden to show that its use of race does not inflict unlawful racial discrimination on Asian Americans.”