Gilbert Arenas apologizes to Lupita Nyong’o for colorist remarks about her beauty

In 2017, the athlete claimed that very few dark-skinned women are beautiful and specifically addressed Nyong’o, pointing out that she was not 'cute.'

(Credit: ArenasTwitter and Getty Images)

On more than one occasion, Gilbert Arenas has made headlines for making derogatory remarks about actress Lupita Nyong’o‘s appearance. But this week, the NBA player shocked fans when he seemingly recognized the error of his ways and issued an apology to the Oscar-winning actress for his remarks which many feel were steeped in colorism.

“We can’t come together as a race until the idiots of the race right their wrongs,” he wrote Tuesday in an unexpected Instagram story. “My name is Gilbert and I was an idiot for attacking one of our queens for no reason. @Lupita Nyong’o, I am truly sorry for my coon behavior. #blacklivesmatterdeadandalive #blackexcellence.”

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 19: Lupita Nyong’o attends the 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on January 19, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. 721430 (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/Getty Images for Turner)

READ MORE: Gilbert Arenas says Lupita Nyong’o ‘ain’t cute’ in tirade about dark-skinned women

Back in 2017, the athlete has found himself under fire for his comments about dark-skinned women on Instagram in which he claimed that very few dark-skinned women are beautiful. He specifically addressed Nyong’o, pointing out that she was not “cute.”

In response to an Instagram post from ProBlkThought that read, “Dear Black Girl: You don’t have to be mixed to be beautiful,” Arenas went on a rant writing,

“How black are we talking??? Not to be funny can u name a beautiful black women on the outside … not brown skin … like tyrese black … top 50 most beautiful women off [sic] all time … the darkest women they have is (Keshia Knight Pulliam aka Rudy) (gab)) union) (taral hicks) (Serena Williams),” he wrote at the time.

READ MORE: Former NBA star Gilbert Arenas claims homeless man helped him win $300K

 

 

READ MORE: Lupita Nyong’o sounds off on colorism: ‘Lighter skin preference is alive and well’

He then added, “When u say African features black then u have (#1 lupita nyong’o) and she’s cute when the lights are off second is (Ajuma nasenyana) sorry but ewww so the black beautiful women u try to boost up is technically light skinned or brown skinned.”

I fucked this up so I deserved the hatred that comes,” he later wrote when the backlash became too great.

But many questioned his sincerity because when a fan tagged him under a picture of the Black Panther actress, teasing, “hey looks it’s the black girl you said that looks better in the dar[k],” – Arenas responded by doubling down with, “Everybody saying her(skin) looks beautiful how about her face tho?? Lights off.”

Hopefully this time, the apology is sincere.

 

Have you subscribed to theGrio’s new podcast “Dear Culture”? Download our newest episodes now!