Drag Race Down Under contestant Karen from Finance has issued a ‘remorseful’ apology for a disgustingly racist tattoo and toy collection.
It comes after Scarlet Adams issued her own grovelling apology last week (12 March) after being called out for Blackface and cultural appropriation.
Karen From Finance took to Instagram to apologise after several people noticed she had a tattoo of a golliwog doll. She said she had “long been remorseful” about the tattoo, which she got because of a collection of toys she has had since childhood.
The ‘golliwog’ is an anti-Black, racist caricature created by an American-English author in the late 1800s, based on characters from racist minstrel shows.
The post stated: “In the spirit of being open and upfront with my friends, family and followers, I would like to address and formally apologise for a part of my past – something that I’ve long been remorseful for – and admittedly ashamed to share.
“Eleven years ago, I had a collection of golliwog dolls – a collection that began when I was two-years-old – and I made the uninformed, ignorant and regrettable decision to have one of these dolls tattooed.
“In the years following, and more notably after being interviewed by someone writing an opinion piece in a tattoo magazine, I realised how insensitive and hurtful this was.
“Even though there was of course never any intention of malice, I realised how irresponsible and stupid I had been and so I disposed of the dolls to landfill and had my tattoo covered.”
Scarlet Adams also apologised on Instagram after Aboriginal drag queen Felicia Foxx shared a number of photos of Adams in culturally appropriative costumes.
Foxx’s post said: “It makes me sick to my core to see numerous people in the LGBTQ+ community who are profiting off of making a mockery and disrespecting people’s cultures.”
Karen from Finance said she is “committed to an ongoing journey of accountability, activism and education” and “ensuring a safe community for anyone I am fortunate enough to have follow my journey”.
The cast of Drag Race Down Under was revealed at Sydney’s Mardi Gras parade on 6 March, with seven Australian queens and three New Zealand queens joining the series.
It was filmed in Auckland, New Zealand, after being moved from Sydney due to COVID-19 restrictions. It will air later this year.