(CNN) NBC host Megyn Kelly apologized to colleagues (동료들에게 사과했다) on Tuesday after her comments defending racist Halloween gags (인종차별적인 할로윈 익살을 옹호하는 말을 한 뒤) prompted an immediate backlash.
"One of the wonderful things about my job is that I get the chance to express and hear a lot of opinions," Kelly said in the internal note, a copy of which was provided by a spokesperson for NBC. "Today is one of those days where listening carefully to other points of view (다른 관점에 대해 주의 깊게 들을 수 있는 그런 날들 중 하루였다), including from friends and colleagues, is leading me to rethink my own views."
Kelly made the offending remarks during an awkward roundtable discussion about inappropriate and offensive costumes on her eponymous one-hour block of the "Today" show, known as "Megyn Kelly Today."
During the segment on Tuesday, Kelly said it was OK when she was growing up for white people to dress up as black characters (그녀가 자라던 곳에서는 백인이 흑인처럼 분장하는 것이 괜찮았다), and she spoke out against a controversy that erupted last year over a reality star who portrayed Diana Ross (지난해에 한 리얼리티 스타가 다이애나 로스를 표현해서 불거진 논란에 대해 반대한다는 의견을 밝혔다).
"But what is racist?" Kelly asked. "Because you do get in trouble if you are a white person who puts on blackface on Halloween, or a black person who puts on whiteface for Halloween. (할로윈에 백인이 흑인분장을 하거나 흑인이 백인분장을 하면 곤란한 일이 생기기 때문이다) Back when I was a kid that was OK, as long as you were dressing up as, like, a character. (캐릭터처럼 분장만 하면 괜찮았었다)"
Later in the discussion, Kelly brought up Luann de Lesseps, a star on "The Real Housewives of New York" who drew a backlash last year for dressing up as Ross.
"There was a controversy on The Real Housewives of New York with Luann, and she dressed as Diana Ross, and she made her skin look darker than it really is and people said that that was racist (그녀는 자신의 피부를 실제보다 더 까맣게 했는데 사람들이 그것은 인종차별적인 것이라고 말했다)," Kelly said. "And I don't know, I felt like who doesn't love Diana Ross? She wants to look like Diana Ross for one day. I don't know how, like, that got racist on Halloween."
Many observers were aghast at Kelly's comments (많은 시청자들이 켈리의 발언에 경악했다), and some noted that the panel did not include a single person of color. And absent from the discussion was any mention of the ugly history of blackface, a tradition spanning centuries meant to perpetuate racist stereotypes.
But the panelists on Tuesday did not echo Kelly's point of view. (화요일의 패널들은 켈리의 관점에 동의하지 않았다.)
"If you think it's offensive, it probably is, (그것이 불쾌하다고 생각했다면 아마도 불쾌한 말이 될 것이다)" said the author and television host Melissa Rivers. "Whatever happened to just, manners and polite society?"
"But on Halloween? On Halloween you've got guys running around with fake axes coming out of their head," Kelly replied. "You're going to, it's going to be jarring."
After Kelly brought up the controversy surrounding de Lesseps, another panelist, MSNBC correspondent Jacob Soboroff piped up.
"I haven't seen it. I have not seen it, but it sounds a little racist to me," he said.
In her note to colleagues after the show aired, Kelly explained that she now understands how she erred with those comments (켈리는 그녀는 이제야 자신이 그 발언을 하면서 실수를 저질렀다는 것을 이해했다고 설명했다).
"When we had the roundtable discussion earlier today about the controversy of making your face look like a different race as part of a Halloween costume, I suggested that this seemed okay if done as part of this holiday where people have the chance to make themselves look like others," she said. "The iconic Diana Ross came up as an example. To me, I thought, why would it be controversial for someone dressing up as Diana Ross to make herself look like this amazing woman as a way of honoring and respecting her?"
"I realize now that such behavior is indeed wrong, and I am sorry (이제 그런 행동이 정말 잘못되었다는 것을 알게 되었고 죄송하게 생각한다)," Kelly added. "The history of blackface in our culture is abhorrent; the wounds too deep. (우리 문화에 있어서 흑인 분장에 대한 역사는 끔찍한 것이었고, 그 상처는 너무 깊다)"
The response to Kelly, particularly on Twitter, was vociferous on Tuesday, with a number of celebrities joining the pile-on.
"I cannot believe the ignorance on this in 2018. (2018년에도 이런 무지몽매함이 있다는 것이 믿기지 않는다) You are on national television," "Top Chef" host Padma Lakshmi said in a tweet directed at Kelly. "You have a responsibility to educate yourself on social issues (당신은 사회적인 문제에 대해 스스로 배워야 할 책임이 있는 사람이다) @megynkelly. This is so damaging."
For Kelly, who left Fox News in 2017 to sign a contract with NBC worth a reported $23 million a year, it was not the first time she has drawn accusations of racism (그녀가 인종차별 비난을 받은 것은 처음이 아니다). In 2013, while still an anchor at Fox, Kelly infamously addressed the ethnicity of Santa Claus (켈리는 산타크루스의 인종에 대해 강조하는 악명 높은 발언으로 잘 알려져 있다).
"By the way, for all you kids watching at home, Santa just is white, (집에서 시청하고 있는 모든 아이들에게 말하는 데 산타는 그냥 백인이야)" she said before bringing Jesus into the discussion for good measure.
"Jesus was a white man, too," she said at the time. "He was a historical figure, that's a verifiable fact, as is Santa."
Addressing her colleagues on Tuesday, Kelly said she's "never been a 'pc' kind of person (논란을 피하려고 잠자코 있는 유형의 사람은 결코 아니다) -- but I understand that we do need to be more sensitive in this day and age."
"Particularly on race and ethnicity issues which, far from being healed, have been exacerbated in our politics over the past year," Kelly said. "This is a time for more understanding, love, sensitivity and honor, and I want to be part of that. I look forward to continuing that discussion."