A clip from E!’s recent show Model Squad is going viral. In the clip, model Devon Windsor talks her way into hot water by comparing racism and discrimination in the modeling world to getting blonde highlights and living in Paris.
Windsor was hanging out with a few fellow models and Olivia Culpo when they started talking about discrimination. Windsor and Culpo jump into the conversation. After Shaik and Hue told them they were talking about diversity the two Caucasian women repeat the word “diversity” like they’re hearing it for the first time.
Model Shanina Shaik began talking about how her she was told she wouldn’t be able to model because of her skin color. “I used to get bullied because of my skin color, I wasn’t gonna be able to do high fashion,” Shaik said. “A lot of black girls would have to miss Milan because they won’t able to walk in the shows because they don’t want girls of that color.”
Model Ping Hue jumped in and told Windsor and Culpo that it might be hard to relate to their experiences as women of color in the modeling world. This upset Windsor and she wanted to prove that she has struggled in the industry despite being thin, white, American and blonde.
“I literally f**king went through hell,” Windsor exclaimed because she lived in “different countries like every other month and didn’t speak that language, didn’t speak Paris, didn’t speak Italian.”
Her hardship of living in Paris and not speaking Paris lasted all of two years, so she feels like she can relate to systematic racism.
Hue called her out and said that her experience is not relatable to the “turmoils of being different.” Windsor retorted that actually, she does know similar turmoil because she’s blonde.
“I have to get a highlight every month!” Windsor cried to a group of WoC. Culpo joking ran her fingers through Windsor’s hair while she watered down her fellow models’ experiences.
Since the clip went viral Windsor has been dragged for her ignorance. Windsor posted an apology on Twitter through a Notes app screenshot. As far as apologies go this one isn’t too bad. Read the apology in full below.
“I want to apologize for what I said. It goes without saying, that the comments in the show are incredibly insensitive. The majority of the conversation was edited and if a peer of mine wanted to discuss such a serious subject, I would never follow it with a joke. I have an immense amount of respect for my peers. I know the struggle of diversity and inclusion in my business as well as in so many others is not one to take lightly. I made a comment in jest to infuse levity and I feel terrible that I have hurt others. I’m even more disappointed that my comments could lead anyone to believe that I have a prejudicial bias. I respect, honor and admire all of those breaking barriers and working to forge a new and inclusive community both in and outside of the modeling industry. I hope that I can continue to learn from others, I am always trying to be a better version of myself!”
Culpo defended her friend on Twitter saying that her comments were “taken out of context” and it was “manufacture drama.”
The other Model Squad members have yet to speak out in support of Windsor’s “misconstrued” comments. What do you think about Windsor’s comments?