Source: getty

Gina Rodriguez's Anti-Black Controversies, Explained



Gina Rodriguez used to be best known for playing the titular Jane in the CW's popular Jane the Virgin, adapted from the Venezuelan series Juana la Virgen.

Article continues below advertisement

But these days, Gina can hardly catch a break from being called anti-black, most recently after she posted an Instagram Story in which she says the N-word. 

Gina issued a lukewarm apology following her video.

The actress has a now-deleted video of her rapping along to "Ready or Not" by the Fugees as she's getting her hair and makeup done.

Article continues below advertisement
Source: instagram

"Voodoo / I could do what you do, believe me," she sang before dropping the song's only instance of the N-word. [Editor's note: Gina did not even get the lyrics to the few seconds of the song she was singing right and omitted some words in the verse.]

Article continues below advertisement

Later, on her Instagram Story, Gina deleted her video and issued an extremely middling apology after receiving incessant backlash from her fans, even causing her name to be trending on Twitter.

"I just wanted to reach out and apologize," she said. "I am sorry. I am sorry if I offended anyone by singing along to the Fugees, to a song I love that I grew up on. I love Lauryn Hill, and I really am sorry if I offended you."

Article continues below advertisement

Later, the Someone Great actress doubled down with a wordy Instagram post. "In song or in real life, the words that I spoke, should not have been spoken," she wrote. "I thoughtlessly sang along to the lyrics of a favorite song, and even worse, I posted it. The word I sang, carries with it a legacy of hurt and pain that I cannot even imagine."

Article continues below advertisement

"Whatever consequences I face for my actions today," she continued, "none will be more hurtful than the personal remorse I feel ... It is humiliating that this has to be a public lesson but it is indeed a much deserved lesson. I feel so deeply protective and responsible to the community of color but I have let this community down. I have some serious learning and growing to do and I am so deeply sorry for the pain I have caused."

This is far from the first time Gina Rodriguez has been accused of being anti-black.

Way before her N-word Instagram rap, Gina's name has been known to trend on Twitter due to a clumsy tendency she has to overlook black women. 

Article continues below advertisement
Source: instagram

Back in July 2017 when Black Panther was the movie on everyone's lips, Gina tweeted, "Marvel and DC are killing it in inclusion but where are the Latinos?! Asking for a friend..." It was a curious musing, especially since Zoe Saldana, who is Dominican and Puerto Rican, and Tessa Thompson, who is of Afro-Panamanian ascent, starred in the film.

Article continues below advertisement

The following year, in 2018, Gina made the rounds for interrupting an interviewer during a press junket for Smallfoot, in which she co-starred with Yara Shahidi. When Yara was being asked what it was like being a role model to "so many young black women," Gina jumped in. "So many women. Women," she corrected, prompting outrage from many who thought the question had been appropriately phrased from the get-go.

Later that year, Gina was asked to participate in a roundtable interview with Net-a-Porter alongside Gabrielle Union and Emma Roberts, then was criticized for how she talked about pay disparity in Hollywood. "I get so petrified in this space talking about equal pay," she said, "especially when you look at the intersectional aspect of it, right?"

Article continues below advertisement

"Where white women get paid more than black women, black women get paid more than Asian women, Asian women get paid more than Latina women, and it's like a very scary space to step into," she said. 

Article continues below advertisement

Gina received tremendous backlash for this statement, which many critics say overlooked the racial inequality black actresses face in Hollywood, and was factually incorrect considering Modern Family's Sofia Vergara had topped Forbes' list of highest-paid actresses for the seventh year straight.

Article continues below advertisement

In addressing this backlash, Gina broke down crying in an interview with Sway in the Morning and ended up describing her father as "dark-skinned" and "Afro-Latino," which many took issue with and began flooding Twitter with photos of Gina and her dad. "The black community was the only community that I looked towards growing up," she said between tears on the radio show.

"We didn't have many Latino shows, and the black community made me feel like I was seen. So to get anti-black is saying that I'm anti-family ... If anything, the black community is my community. As Latinos, we have black Latinos. That is what we are. I am not, so I think that when I speak about Latino advocacy, people believe I only mean people of my skin color."

More from Distractify

More From Distractify