Blackface lynching pictures from UNC Chapel Hill 1979 yearbook emerge - the same year NC Gov Roy Cooper graduated - just days after HE called on Virginia Governor to resign over racist photo
- Images emerged Wednesday showing what's believed to be members of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill's Chi Phi fraternity in racist costumes
- A picture shows two Chi Phi people wearing white robes similar to those worn by the Ku Klux Klan, depicting a lynching with a man donning blackface
- Another photograph on the 1979 yearbook pages show two people blacked up
- Chapel Hill denounced the photographs that were published 40 years ago
- Told DailyMail.com in a statement they 'wholly condemn' the 'abhorrent' photos
- Cooper was in the different Chi Psi fraternity did not feature on their pages
- He did have his photo in the same yearbook however
- It came days after he called for Virginia Governor Northam to resign after racist images emerged in his yearbook
Horrifying blackface and lynching images from North Carolina Democrat Roy Cooper’s yearbook have emerged just days after he called on Virginia Governor Ralph Northam to resign over racist images in his yearbook.
The pictures surfaced Wednesday showing what's believed to be two members of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill's Chi Phi fraternity donning white robes, similar to those worn by the Ku Klux Klan, and depicting a lynching with a man donning blackface.
Aside from the shot where they use a lighting fixture with a noose, the two-page spread for the frat shows a woman kissing a man's cheek and they too have their faces blacked up in the black-and-white pictures.
There is no suggestion that Cooper is in any of those photos but they feature in his 1979 yearbook.
Chapel Hill condemned the photos Wednesday with Vice Chancellor for Communications, Joel Curran, telling DailyMail.com in a statement: 'The photos found in the 1979 student yearbook are abhorrent.'
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Horrifying images emerged Wednesday show what's believed to be two members of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill's Chi Phi fraternity in racist pictures from a 1979 yearbook
Another photograph on the 1979 yearbook pages show two people blacked up
Democrat Governor Roy Cooper appeared on another page in the yearbook (left)
The images resurfaced after on February 2, Cooper tweeted about Governor Northam: 'This is a reprehensible picture that is deeply disappointing and I know must come with pain beyond what many of us can even understand, Resignation is the only way forward'
Curran continued: 'We fully and wholly condemn both the photos and the racist behavior they depict. That kind of behavior has no place on our campus now or then.'
It comes on the same day Virginia's third-ranking official revealed he too wore blackface in the 1980s and a woman claimed she was forced to perform oral sex on the state's Justin Fairfax, who many have said should replace Northam.
Around the offensive images, students can be seen drinking and dancing in celebration. There is also one class photo.
Cooper was a member of a different fraternity, Chi Psi, and while the 61-year-old from Nashville is indeed pictured in his yearbook edition, he does not feature on his frat page according to a list of students who don't appear.
Some Twitter users pointed out that he was a 'big difference' between the behavior of the two fraternities.
One appeared to suggest the presence of some black students backed up idea that racist culture was not present in the frat.
Mr McFritters wrote: 'Roy Cooper was a Chi Psi. Not a Chi Phi. We had a few African American members.'
The image (bottom right on left page) shows two people wearing white robes similar to those worn by the Ku Klux Klan, depicting a lynching with a man donning blackface. The other (top left on right page) is also and Chapel Hill denounced the photographs from 40 years ago
Cooper appeared (circled) in the same book as the image the university has since labeled 'abhorrent' and said they 'wholly condemn'
Cooper's fraternity pages seemed to center around their sports activities
UNC Democrats join John Ingram in campaigning for Senator Roy Cooper (left)
Another lynching image appeared in the 1979 yearbook for the North Carolina school
Some of those referred to can be seen in a class picture from the Chi Psi pages which seem to center around sports activities.
Others expressed shock as to the acceptance of the images in the yearbook.
'I was attending a (very rural) Southern University at EXACTLY time and never saw anything like this,' one user on the microblogging website shared. 'Must be a southern white city thing or a fraternity thing.'
Another added: 'Whoa! I was in high school at this time and we clearly knew this was bad and racist.'
DailyMail.com did not receive an immediate response for a request for comment from Governor Cooper's office Wednesday.
The images resurfaced after on February 2, Cooper tweeted about Governor Northam: 'This is a reprehensible picture that is deeply disappointing and I know must come with pain beyond what many of us can even understand. Resignation is the only way forward.'
Cooper asked for the removal of three confederate monuments on the Capitol grounds but in August 2018 the state commission to recommended they stay.
It also came after the toppling of the controversial Silent Sam structure.
DailyMail.com did not receive an immediate response for a request for comment from Governor Cooper's office Wednesday
Some tweeters pointed out the different reputations of the two fraternities on Wednesday
Twitter users reacted in shocked and some were not so surprised on Wednesday as the pictures resurfaced
Some stated that they were in school in 1979 and they were aware of the difference between right and wrong
As a scandal emerges from North Carolina, Virginia's politicians fight to save their reputations.
A statement from Fairax's office early Monday morning denied a sexual assault allegation against Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax when he was dating a woman 15 years ago.
It said: 'Lt. Governor Fairfax has an outstanding and well-earned reputation for treating people with dignity and respect.
'He has never assaulted anyone - ever - in any way, shape, or form.'
At the state capitol, Fairfax told reporters it was a 'smear.'
Herring told members of the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus during an emergency closed-door meeting that he wore blackface on at least one occasion while he was a University of Virginia student in 1980.
Herring graduated from UVA undergraduate in 1983 before then getting a Masters, also from UVA, and going to law school at the University of Richmond.
Virginia Governor Northam's 1984 yearbook has caused uproar in the past week for racist images
Ralph Northam (top left) initially apologized for appearing in a racist photograph (right) then backtracked
Northam (left ,with his wife Pam right) spoke during a news conference in the governor's mansion in Richmond, Virginia Saturday and refused to step down
While at UVA, he was a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity.
In both Herring's freshman and sophomore yearbooks, Sigma Chi's designated page celebrated that it had 'money to spend'.
'Financially, Psi Chapter enjoys one of the foremost positions among fraternities at the university,' the Sigma Chi page reads in UVA's 1981 yearbook.
Photos on Sigma Chi's pages also show members happily posing with beers, bottles, and drinks.
While there appeared to be no African American members in Sigma Chi in 1980 or 1981, in 1982 the fraternity claimed that diversity was its 'major strength' and a 'source of pride' in the house.
Herring had planned to run for Virginia in 2021. The state's governors are limited by law to one term in office.
Mark Warner, one of Virginia's two Democratic US senators, told reporters at the Capitol in Washington: 'I'm shocked and incredibly disappointed. This has been an awful week for Virginia.'
Fallout continues to accumulate from Governor Ralph Northam's admission that he wore blackface after graduating from medical school.
Northam, meanwhile, has been hunkered down behind closed doors as he weighs his political future.
Lt. Governor Elect Justin Fairfax (left in November 2017) was facing his own scandal Wednesday after a woman claimed she was forced to perform oral sex on him. Mark Herring (right) admitted he wore blackface in the 1980s
Cooper (left in September 2018) was among many politicians including President Trump (right) calling for Northam to resign in the past week
He had held on despite a disastrous five days which saw him first admit he was in the yearbook picture, then deny it, then admit he put on shoe polish to impersonate Michael Jackson, use a press conference to say it was difficult to get off, and only be stopped by his wife from Moonwalking, and be called on to resign by dozens of senior Democrats.
Northam has resisted calls from Democratic leaders to step down.
Among those calling for his resignation: Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, Democratic National Committe Chairman Tom Perez, both Virginia Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, former Attorney General Eric Holder, Sen. Cory Booker, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren.
Northam did not help his cause in his bizarre press conference on Saturday, Northam denied appearing in the photograph that he on Friday apologized for, but he admitted that he did wear blackface for a Michael Jackson costume the same year.
The 59-year-old from Nassawadox admitted dressing up as the late singer, wearing similar footwear, a glove and shoe polish to look like an African-American person.
Making his revelation worse, he told attendees the reason why he only wore a 'little bit' of shoe polish was because it's difficult to remove.
'I don't know if anybody's tried this...' he said to the shocked room. But it didn't explain why he was wearing blackface to show off his dance talent during the skit.
Northam told the audience during question time: 'I have discussed this with a person of color. I apologized to him.'
Mark Herring's full statement
The very bright light that is shining on Virginia right now is sparking a painful but, I think we all hope, important conversation. The stakes are high, and our spirits are low.
I am sure we all have done things at one time or another in our lives that show poor judgment, and worse yet, have caused some level of pain to others. I have a glaring example from my past that I have thought about with deep regret in the many years since, and certainly each time I took a step forward in public service, realizing that my goals and this memory could someday collide and cause pain for people I care about, those who stood with me in the many years since, or those who I hoped to serve while in office.
In 1980, when I was a 19-year-old undergraduate in college, some friends suggested we attend a party dressed like rappers we listened to at the time, like Kurtis Blow, and perform a song. It sounds ridiculous even now writing it. But because of our ignorance and glib attitudes – and because we did not have an appreciation for the experiences and perspectives of others – we dressed up and put on wigs and brown makeup.
This was a onetime occurrence and I accept full responsibility for my conduct.
That conduct clearly shows that, as a young man, I had a callous and inexcusable lack of awareness and insensitivity to the pain my behavior could inflict on others. It was really a minimization of both people of color, and a minimization of a horrific history I knew well even then.
Although the shame of that moment has haunted me for decades, and though my disclosure of it now pains me immensely, what I am feeling in no way compares to the betrayal, the shock, and the deep pain that Virginians of color may be feeling. Where they have deserved to feel heard, respected, understood, and honestly represented, I fear my actions have contributed to them being forced to revisit and feel a historical pain that has never been allowed to become history.
This conduct is in no way reflective of the man I have become in the nearly 40 years since.
As a senator and as attorney general, I have felt an obligation to not just acknowledge but work affirmatively to address the racial inequities and systemic racism that we know exist in our criminal justice system, in our election processes, and in other institutions of power. I have long supported efforts to empower communities of color by fighting for access to healthcare, making it easier and simpler to vote, and twice defended the historic re-enfranchisement of former felons before the Supreme Court of Virginia. I have launched efforts to make our criminal justice system more just, fair, and equal by addressing implicit bias in law enforcement, establishing Virginia's first-ever program to improve re-entry programs in local jails, and pushing efforts to reform the use of cash bail. And I have tried to combat the rise in hate crimes and white supremacist violence that is plaguing our Commonwealth and our country.
That I have contributed to the pain Virginians have felt this week is the greatest shame I have ever felt. Forgiveness in instances like these is a complicated process, one that necessarily cannot and should not be decided by anyone but those directly affected by the transgressor, should forgiveness be possible or appropriate at all. In the days ahead, honest conversations and discussions will make it clear whether I can or should continue to serve as attorney general, but no matter where we go from here, I will say that from the bottom of my heart, I am deeply, deeply sorry for the pain that I cause with this revelation.
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