After a viral photo from Netflix Applaud Star Gabi Butler wearing blackface has gone viral, the competitive cheerleader and new WWE trainee released a statement on social media that only got her into even more hot water.
The picture originally went viral after being posted by @cheerfessions1 on Twitter, an anonymous account that posts news and updates from the competitive world of cheerleading.
“For those who really care about the truth…” she tweeted with a long note along with photos and a video of other teammates participating in painting their faces black.
In the note, she wrote that as a rookie on the Navarro College cheer squad (the subject of the Netflix docuseries) in 2018, veteran cheerleaders asked new athletes to dress in black. and paint your face.
She said all of the teammates had complied, “including a few who also happened to be people of color.”
“I hope these teammates will support me and verify that this is an accurate account of what happened that day,” she continued. “I’m not a racist and I would never do anything to make fun of anyone or hurt anyone of color.”
She then called for “anonymous Twitter accounts” to be held responsible for spreading “gossip, rumors and falsely qualified posts”.
However, Applaud fans were taken aback by Butler’s inclusion of more evidence of blackface and his appeal to former teammates who are people of color.
A former castmate, La’Darius Marshall, who was a fan favorite in the docuseries, spoke out online.
In a TikTok video titled “I don’t and won’t lie for friends at all,” he called the incident “hazing” and said only three other athletes participated in the face painting.
“I was like ‘Don’t do that s—.’ I said that. So I’m confused as to how consenting everyone was when I know I actually said something,” he said in the video.
He continued, “Why do you think they made me up as the angry black man? Because as soon as they started hazing I swore they were fucking.”
On Twitter, Marshall added, “When you do the right thing, you don’t do it to get anything back, I did it to protect myself, my friends back then and future kids. .”
Meanwhile, Butler escalated the situation by adding to her statement that she had ‘never heard of blackface’ and if she thought the situation ‘had anything to do with racism’ she would have ‘absolutely refused’. “.
She then responded to a fan and named a black teammate who apparently participated in the hazing, to which Marshall tweeted quote and said, “No, what we won’t do is throw ‘other people of color’ under the bus. The rest of the [minorities] spoke out against it, I spoke to you personally and said it was not a good idea. So no, we didn’t all feel the same, I’ve forgiven you but don’t just sit here and lie.”
Many fans overwhelmingly agreed, calling Butler’s apology a “lie” and telling him to “be serious.”
“It’s not Gabi Butler doing blackface…I’m not surprised to see that dark tan she’s getting,” one person said. tweeted.
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