Giuliana Rancic infuriated the masses when she decided to take it upon herself to say that Zendaya looked like “she probably smells like patchouli oil … or weed,” because she was wearing locs to the Oscars.
The 18-year-old, who is no stranger to criticism, decided to address the insensitive remarks on Instagram. In what was the most graceful shade we’ve ever witnessed, Zendaya schooled Rancic and anyone else who didn’t see how the racially-tinged comment could be disrespectful.
“There is a fine line between what is funny and disrespectful,” Zendaya wrote.” Someone said something about my hair at the Oscars that left me in awe. Not because I was relishing in rave outfit reviews, but because I was hit with ignorant slurs and pure disrespect. To say that an 18-year-old young woman with locs must smell of patchouli oil or ‘weed’ is not only a large stereotype but outrageously offensive.”
“There is already harsh criticism of African American hair in society without the help of ignorant people who choose to judge others based on the curl of their hair.”
She’s absolutely correct. Just weeks before Zendaya walked down the red carpet with a mane full of beautiful locs, Kylie Jenner posted a picture rocking a loc’d up-do that many, including Rancic, deemed “edgy.” Sadly, for black women, rocking a traditional hairstyle garnered more scrutiny and required more explanation — a symptom of the narrow beauty standards forced on women of color for centuries.
Though Rancic issued an apology, the damage was already done and her comments sparked major social media fury.
Here are some of the reactions:
When we start picking apart young women at an early age we are destroying their self esteem. #Zendaya
— Karεn Ciѵil (@KarenCivil) February 24, 2015
How to break the internet with intelligence, grace, and dignity = #Zendaya 🙌
— Beautifuldreamers__ (@Ss_AuntIcey) February 24, 2015
— Tiah (@TiahTalbot) February 24, 2015
— scotia626 (@scotia626) February 24, 2015
Zendaya is a selfless person. She didn’t just stand up for herself, she stood up for the whole race. #ZendayaDefenseSquad
— #ZendayaDefenseSquad (@MilikasMaree97) February 24, 2015
Hopefully, Rancic learned her lesson and will be prudent when she speaks about subject matter she knows nothing about.
Check out some of our favorite loc’d up stars below.
SOURCE: Twitter | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty