Little Mix Break Silence On Jesy Nelson 'Blackfishing' Accusations
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Little Mix have spoken out about the blackfishing accusations aimed at former bandmate Jesy Nelson.
Jesy, 30, caused a lot of controversy with her debut single as a solo artist 'Boyz'. Many people argued that her look in the video appropriated black culture.
Blackfishing is 'when white public figures, influencers and the like do everything in their power to appear Black', according to journalist Wanna Thompson who coined the term.
Now Nelson's former Little Mix bandmates have broken their silence on the issue during an interview with the Daily Telepraph's Stella magazine.
Leigh-Anne Pinnock - who released a BBC documentary earlier this year called Leigh-Anne: Race, Pop and Power - told the magazine: "Capitalising on aspects of blackness without having to endure the daily realities of the black experience is problematic and harmful to people of colour.
"We think it's absolutely not OK to use harmful stereotypes.
"There's so much to say on that subject that it's hard to sum up in a sound bite."
The trio also claimed they spoke to Jesy about the blackfishing accusations.
Jade Thirlwall said: "One thing we will clarify regarding the blackfishing situation is that Jesy was approached by the group in a very friendly, educational manner."
Jesy has addressed the accusations a few times now and during an interview with Vulture she said: "The whole time I was in Little Mix I never got any of that.
"And then I came out of [the band] and people all of a sudden were saying it. I wasn't on social media around that time, so I let my team [deal with it], because that was when I'd just left."
She added: "But I mean, like, I love black culture. I love black music. That's all I know; it's what I grew up on. I'm very aware that I'm a white British woman; I've never said that I wasn't."
Nicki Minaj, who she worked with for 'Boyz', defended her during an Instagram Live where she said: "It's a lot of women out here in the United States that tan, get bigger lips, get all types of s*** done to themselves.
"I wear blonde hair straight down to my feet, contacts, whatever... as long as you're not hurting nobody or speaking negatively about someone's race you should be able to wear whatever you want to."
Jesy also took the time during her conversation with Minaj to defend her image - specifically when it comes to her tan - when she said: "I just want to touch on the whole tanning thing as well, when I was in the video with you [Nicki], I didn't have fake tan on. I'd been in Antigua prior to that for three weeks.
"I'm really lucky as a white girl I tan so much. Leigh-Anne even said to me in the group: 'Are you sure you're not mixed race because you go darker than me in the sun!'
"My hair is naturally curly, I got it from my dad - I wanted to get a wig that emulated the same texture as my hair and I genuinely didn't think I was doing anything wrong."
LADbible has reached out to Jesy Nelson's reps for a comment.