The Office actress Ellie Kemper has come into some hot water after photos of her surfaced on twitter. The 1999 pageant winner has been accused of being affiliated with white supremacy groups.
The actress who played Erin in The Office and Kimmy Schmidt in The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, is under fire for a 1999 pageant. Here is everything you need to know
Ellie Kemper involved in white supremacy pageant
The St.Louis’ Veiled Prophet Ball images from 1999 resurfaced on social media with Kemper being crowned queen. As the photos made their rounds, it didn’t take long for people to find out that the Veiled Prophet Organization was associated with white supremacy.
The group itself doesn’t hold any ties with the racist, KKK. However reports from Black Lives Matter state they are “upholding power structures in the area.”
In 2014, The Atlantic said the event’s organizers banned Black and Jewish members until the late 70s. The event involves the winner to be crowned by a secret member, who wears white robs and a white veil over his face.
Due to the images many people believe there to be affiliation with the Klu Klux Klan. After Twitter branded Ellie Kemper “KKK princess”, several people began sharing their experiences with the Veiled Prophet Fair.
Keith Boykin recalls “it was only for white people” and that “racial segregation was so normalized that people were just expected to know their place.”
Kemper did have some defence, Ben Shapiro said in a Tweet “There is not a single iota of evidence that Ellie Kemper is racist.”
This brings us to the prevalent notion of cancel culture. There have been two schools of thought regarding cancel culture:
- It is far-left wing approach to destroy the lives of those who have done some form of wrong throughout their lives.
- it is a much needed reckoning of holding people responsible for their actions past, present and future.
Rolling Stone said, there is another area to cancel culture that “neither is a tool to incite rage or hold people accountable but a stage for cancelling to take place.”
What this means is that it is a place to promote narratives that aren’t backed-up with facts or context.
Cancel Culture & Ellie Kemper
Now that photos of 22-year old Kemper has done rounds on social media, people crowned her the “KKK princess”. She participated in a pageant in her hometown of St. Louis that was sponsored by semi-secret society of wealthy white community members.
The Veiled Prophet Ball is 140 years old and was founded by confederate cavalrymen in 1878. The narrative that is circling is that Kemper was elected a “KKK Queen.”
The key take-aways from this is that yes, the Veiled Prophet Ball is problematic on many, many levels. However, there is not evidence it is related to the KKK or that Kemper is a racist.
The 2014 Atlantic article that went viral yesterday, states that the ball was founded by while men which held dominance over the black community. Additionally, it has attracted a lot of criticism for years for being exclusive, creepy and racist.
In the late 70s the organization rebranded, allowing black members to join, although it still faces backlash for reinforcing racist power structures.
Moreover, trending Twitter topics seem to promote the idea that Kemper is the “KKK pageant queen.” Which inherently spreads misinformation and perpetuates a false narrative.
Ellie Kemper has yet to comment on the situation which also furthers the speculation. So who is to blame? The misinformation from Twitter, allowing the spread of a story to grow with a false narrative. Or Ellie Kemper, at the age of 22 in 1999 entering a pageant with ingrained racist roots.