Megyn Kelly Blackface Apology in Full: 'I've Never Been a 'PC' Kind of Person'

Megyn Kelly's apology note to NBC News colleagues after her comments about dressing in blackface at Halloween made its way onto social media.

In the memo, the Megyn Kelly Today host said she has "never been a 'PC' kind of person" but that she understood "we do need to be more sensitive in this day and age." It was posted to Twitter by BuzzFeed News reporter Remy Smidt.

"I realize now that such behavior is indeed wrong, and I'm sorry. The history of blackface in our culture is abhorrent; the wounds too deep," Kelly wrote.

During a panel discussion on Tuesday's edition of her show about costume bans for students at a U.K. university, Kelly defended white people dressing in blackface at Halloween.

"There was a controversy on The Real Housewives of New York with Luann, as she dressed as Diana Ross and she made her skin look darker than it really is," Kelly said.

"People said that that was racist! And I don't know, like, I thought, like, 'Who doesn't love Diana Ross?' She wants to look like Diana Ross for one day. I don't know how that got racist on Halloween. It's not like she's walking around [wearing blackface] in general."

Kelly later asked: "What is racist? You do get in trouble if you are a white person who puts on blackface on Halloween, or a black person that puts on whiteface for Halloween. Back when I was a kid, that was okay, as long as you were dressing up as, like, a character."

There was a backlash against Kelly after her show.

"You and I are approximately the same age," wrote comedian and actor Patton Oswalt on Twitter, tagging in Kelly's handle, before suggesting he once wore blackface when young and got a negative reaction because of it.

"Blackface was NOT okay when we were kids. Take it from a big-hearted boy who just wanted to show his love for Nipsey Russell on the worst Halloween of my life."

CNN's Don Lemon also tore into Kelly over her comments, telling his network colleague Chris Cuomo that "there has never been a time" that it was "acceptable" to dress in blackface during her lifetime, according to Mediaite.

"The people who are hiring people like Megyn, like me and you should realize how important diversity is, how important it is for their talent to know the history of this country and not say stupid things like, it's okay," Lemon said. "It's always been okay for people to dress up as long as they're honoring and memorializing someone. It's never okay."

Megyn Kelly's apology note in full

Dear friends & teammates-

One of the wonderful things about my job is that I get the chance to express and hear a lot of opinions. Today is one of those days where listening carefully to other points of view, including from friends and colleagues, is leading me to rethink my own views.

When we had the roundtable discussion earlier today about the controversy of making your face look like a difference race as part of a Halloween costume, I suggested this seemed okay if done as part of this holiday where people have the chance to make themselves look like others.

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'm sorry. The history of blackface in our culture is abhorrent; the wounds too deep.

I've never been a "pc" kind of person -- 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. 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.

I'm honored to work with all of your every day.

Love,

Mk

Megyn Kelly
Megyn Kelly attends the TIME 100 Gala celebrating its annual list of the 100 Most Influential People In The World at Frederick P. Rose Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center on April 24, 2018 in New York City. ANGELA WEISS/AFP/Getty Images
Megyn Kelly Blackface Apology in Full: 'I've Never Been a 'PC' Kind of Person' | U.S.