Black Face Lives and Black Women are the Targets

Knipp as Ms. Shirley, along with 3 hosts from Bravo’s “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy”

Yeah, that’s Charles Knipp, a big white man in black face playing “Ms. Shirley Q. Liquor,” a character that he created that’s a Black woman with 19 fatherless kids and poor grammar that he uses as a tool to mock Black culture and Black people. Supposedly, this man does drag shows all around the country and the gay community supports and loves him!(Note the 3 hosts from Bravo’s “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy” hamming it up with him in the photo above).

 Now, let’s be clear…I’m totally pro First Amendment and believe that he should be able to say and do what he wants…but what I do believe is that it’s also our right to not provide him with a forum and audience.  I would normally not have posted this, but I thought my sisters needed to know that we were being ripped, and hopefully, if you hear that he’s coming to your town, you will make some noise about it.  Be careful, however, because Black Superwoman Jasmyne Cannick spoke out about it and even got some of his shows cancelled in 2007, and she has been receiving death threats! [The Daily Voice]

5 Responses to “Black Face Lives and Black Women are the Targets”

  1. Your site is hot!!! Keep it coming!!!

  2. I think there is more to Shirley Q. Liquor than a close similarity to Black Face but it’s important to be critical. The representations of women that are produced by drag queens and transexuals are often unvaried and lack any kind of cultural backbone. When we see characters like Shirley Q Liquor, it causes an unusual reactions of anger, of confusion or of laughter. As a gay man, I have seen the “Whitney Houston” character or the “Diana Ross” so many times, and I think those images are just as damaging to perceptions of black women being erratic, drug fueled songstresses. The thing about Shirley Q. Liqour that is different from other drag queen personalities is her warm heart and accepting nature, lack of self obsession and candid commentary on contemporary life. Even if there is a similarity to black face in Knipp’s costume, there is at least person underneath that reflects on her (his) experience.

    I also think racism, sexism and homophobia share something in common: discrimination from the status quo. It is my opinion that these empirical discourses need to confronted through solidarity between and across movements and by ‘banning’ Shirley Q Liquor, we create conflict between groups that I wish could find harmony in the face of oppression.

    I agree that there is something offensive about the character and I am a white, middle class man so I must acknowledge the privilege society provides me. However, I just think this issue deserves conversation and exchange of ideas. We can learn something from our reactions.

  3. Shalandra Says:

    has anyone ever seen WHITE Chicks? HELLO! get off your self righteous horses

  4. this is sooooooooo dumb

  5. […] photo of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy cast with Charles Knipp in black face comes from Black Super Woman; in the same post she points out that criticism of his performance by a black lesbian led to death […]

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