Gina Rodriguez issued a public apology after she sparked a firestorm of controversy by posting a vide that showed her singing the N-word. Now, the apology has sparked a new controversy as fans accuse the Jane the Virgin actress of being insincere and trying to draw more attention to herself.
The actress posted on her Instagram stories the now-deleted video clip of herself singing along to the 1996 Fugees song, “Ready or Not,” that contains a lyric with the N-word. Rodriguez looking into the camera as she sang the lyric, then turned away and laughed with someone next to her. The clip led to accusations of racism against the actress, and prompted her to take to Instagram to share an apology.
In the apology, Rodriguez said she was sorry to anyone who was offended and justified the incident by saying she grew up loving the Fugees and singer Lauryn Hill.
But many fans have called out the apology for being “hollow” and noted that she never actually apologized for saying the racial slur. Others noted that the song only contained the N-word one time, and that was the eight-second clip that Rodriguez decided to post of herself singing, leading them to believe that it was not a mistake.
“Gina Rodriguez did that s*it intentionally,” one fan tweeted. “She waited for that part of the song to come up, got her phone ready to record herself saying the N-word, then posted it on her story. She KNEW she’d get backlash from it. then she has the NERVE to say ‘I’m sorry if you were offended.'”
Others took issue with what they felt was a non-apology from the actress.
“OMG, it is 2019 and public figures still don’t know how to apologize…which makes me think she’s not really sorry,” tweeted journalist Yashar Ali. “Gina Rodriguez does the ‘sorry if I offended anyone,’ bit. And then she goes on to bring up the song as if that justifies it.”
The criticism of Gina Rodriguez’s apology extended beyond social media. Vox writer Aja Romano noted that the apology seemed to fit a larger pattern of questionable racial statements from the actress, which fans picked up on immediately. Rodriguez had stirred controversy by responding to the success of the Marvel movie Black Panther by openly questioning why there weren’t more Latino actors in the comic book franchise, leading to accusations that she has tried to downplay the barriers that African American actors face in Hollywood.