University of Texas 'Miss Black' pageant winner criticized for not being black enough
AUSTIN, Texas —
"I remember texting my sister before and I was like honestly, I don't even think I'm going to place" said Rachael Malonson. "I immediately was just like, 'Oh my gosh!'"
Soon after the University of Texas' Kappa Alpha Psi chapter posted the pics of the newly crowned winner, the tweets started rolling in, questioning how such a fair-skinned woman could win miss black university of Texas.
"Someone literally personally asked me are you black? Can you prove it to me?” said Malonson. “I was like yeah, my dad's black and my mom's white."
The Iota Delta chapter says "The Miss Black University of Texas scholarship pageant was established in 1982 with a singular goal in mind -- to support and uplift African-American women. Prior to its inception, African-American women had limited scholarship opportunities on the university campus."
"You have to be a woman and you have to have some African American in your heritage," said Malonson. "I don't fit the stereotypical look that you would think a black person would fit."
UT professor of African-American studies Kevin Cokley says there's a generations-long issue playing out here.
"People of African descent who are more phenotypically black, if you will, have not gotten positive messages about their looks and there are just too many examples to count," said Cokley.
"I want people to be able to break away from those stereotypes," Malonson said.