Maya Jama addresses problematic tweet in podcast interview on colourism
Maya Jama has spoken out about the controversial “dark skin b*tches” tweet that was unearthed last month, admitting she used to be an “ignorant person”.
The BBC presenter came under fire last month after one of her tweets from April 2012 emerged.
At the age of 17, Maya shared a post that read: “‘Dark skin b*tches shaving their head expecting to look like Amber Rose, when really they end up looking like Micheal Jordan.’ Looooooooool”.
Upon receiving serious backlash from social media users, Stormzy’s girlfriend apologised for the “offensive” tweet in two written statements.
However, a month later, the Cannonball presenter has again addressed the tweet in a spoken interview, in order to “get a chance to speak as a person” and so listeners “can hear where I came from”.
Speaking on The Receipts Podcast, Maya – who is half Swedish and half Somali – reflected on her own experiences of discrimination at school. She said: “There were these boys and they were so horrible to me when they found out that I was Somali.
“When they asked me where I’m from I used to be like ‘yeah I’m Spanish and Jamaican’ or something like that – and just made a whole completely new background because I didn’t want people to judge me from where I was from.”
“So I get it, it’s not the same thing, but I understand the feeling of people being rude and taking the piss out of where you are from. Or your race or your skin colour. When it’s something you can’t change.”
As the panel continued to discuss the effects colourism, Maya added: “I understand it [colourism] as much as I can, of course, I’m not a dark skin black woman but from what I can understand is that it is years and years of abuse feeling like you are less than.”
The presenter also revealed she steered clear from social media after apologising for her tweet for the second time, as she wanted to protect her own mental health.
“For my own mental health I don’t want to be sat there scrolling through people sending me abuse and death threats over something that I am not today,” she said.
Maya’s initial apology was not particularly well-received, and so the TV personality wished to vocalise her thoughts more clearly. She said: “I have wanted to speak about this as a human and not just some notes on Twitter or some statement or apology.
“I have wanted to have my voice on something where I can speak because where something like this does happen, if you release something like that, people will just pick it apart either way. But if you get a chance to speak as a person and you can hear where I came from.
“I was definitely an ignorant person that was trying to make people laugh and not understanding the seriousness of a joke like that”.
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