‘I apologize if I ever fell short’: Awkwafina quits Twitter after statement on ‘blaccent’ controversy

Awkwafina recently quit Twitter after receiving backlash from social media users who criticized her post that addresses her use of African American Vernacular English (AAVE) and a “blaccent”(Black accent) in the past.

On Saturday, the “Shang-Chi” star, whose real name is Nora Lum, shared a lengthy Twitter post acknowledging criticism of the way in which she spoke during previous roles. 

“There is a sociopolitical context to everything, especially the historical context of the African American community in this country,” the 33-year-old New York native wrote. “It is a group that is disproportionately affected by institutionalized policies and law enforcement policies — all the while having historically and routinely seen their culture stolen, exploited and appropriated by the *dominant* culture for monetary gain without acknowledgment nor respect for where those roots come from, the pioneers of its beginnings and the artists that perfected and mastered the craft.”

According to the comedian, it was never her intention to hurt any minority. She noted that she “will always listen and work tirelessly to understand the history and context of AAVE, what is deemed appropriate or backwards toward the progress of ANY and EVERY marginalized group.”

“I must emphasize: To mock, belittle, or to be unkind in any way possible at the expense of others is: Simply. Not. My. Nature. It never has, and it never was,” she added. 

Born to a Korean immigrant mother and a Chinese American father, Awkwafina went on to explain the type of environment in New York in which she grew up. 

“My immigrant background allowed me to carve an American identity off the movies and TV shows I watched, the children I went to public school with, and my undying love and respect for hip hop,” she wrote. “I think as a group, Asian Americans are still trying to figure out what that journey means for them — what is correct and where they don’t belong.” 

She ended her statement with a commitment to “spend the rest of my career doing nothing but uplifting our communities. We do this first by failing, learning, acknowledging, hearing and empathizing… And I will continue, tirelessly, to do just that.”

After Awkwafina posted her statement, it was bombarded with responses that called it a “non-apology.”

Hours after releasing her statement, Awkwafina tweeted that she is  quitting Twitter. 

“Well, I’ll see you in a few years, Twitter – per my therapist,” she wrote. “To my fans, thank you for continuing to love and support someone who wishes they could be a better person for you. I apologize if I ever fell short, in anything I did. You’re in my heart always.”

“To Clarify: I am retiring from the ingrown toenail that is Twitter. Not retiring from anything else, even if I wanted to, and I didn’t drunkenly hit someone with a shoehorn and now escaping as a fugitive. Also am avail on all other socials that don’t tell you to kill yourself!”

In 2018, Awkwafina was heavily criticized for her portrayal of “Crazy Rich Asians” character Goh Peik Lin, which was accused of being “real-life Blackface” and appropriating Black culture, as NextShark previously reported. 

Upon receiving an NAACP Image Award nomination earlier this year for her work in Disney’s “Raya and the Last Dragon,” the actor was blasted on social media, with some critics claiming that she still uses a “blaccent” in her roles despite stating that she refuses to do accents, especially Asian ones.

Featured Image via Movieclips Trailers

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