“NBC Nightly News” dedicated a full segment Tuesday evening to comments made by their network’s own Megyn Kelly after the “Today” host defended the use of “blackface” as a Halloween costume.
“NBC’s Megyn Kelly issued an apology tonight to her staff after she defended the idea of wearing blackface for Halloween,” Lester Holt said. “Her comments came during a panel discussion on her program this morning quickly sparking a backlash over remarks many viewed as racially tone deaf.”
Though only about 90 seconds, the segment packed a punch — including criticism from outsiders like television host Padma Lakshmi — and a “this isn’t the first time” moment where the piece also hit Kelly for her 2013 remarks on Fox News asserting that Santa Claus was “white.”
The piece concluded with Kelly’s apology, which she circulated in a private note to staff yesterday and that she repeated on her show Wednesday.
“I want to begin with two words, I’m sorry,” said Kelly. “The country feels so divided and I have no wish to add to that pain and offense. I believe this is a time for more understanding, more love, more sensitivity and honor. Thank you for listening and for helping me listen too.”
"I want to begin with two words, I'm sorry..The country feels so divided and I have no wish to add to that pain and offense. I believe this is a time for more understanding, more love, more sensitivity and honor..Thank you for listening and for helping me listen too." Megyn Kelly pic.twitter.com/6hHrvZLNvK
— Megyn Kelly TODAY (@MegynTODAY) October 24, 2018
Kelly immediately followed with panel discussion with Roland Martin and Amy Holmes, both of whom lectured her about the issue.
“I’ll be honest when I saw the headlines I cringed,” said Holmes. “I had this sense that there was a bit of a blind spot.”
Kelly faced broad criticism on Tuesday after defending “blackface” in certain circumstances both from industry colleagues and interests groups. In a statement to TheWrap, the NAACP also denounced her remarks.
“During the slave trade, some people thought it was OK to treat human beings as property and less than animals,” Malik Russell, a spokesperson for the civil rights organization, told TheWrap on Tuesday. “Maybe in Megyn Kelly’s world, offensive acts and racism are OK, but I assure you for individuals of color, blackface is always racist and never OK.”