Things turned ugly on social media for CNN after the networked pondered how black the newborn Royal baby will be.
The network published an analysis piece on its website addressing mixed-race "myths" after Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, gave birth to her first child.
Wow. What did the article say?
The subhead on the article read, "How black will the Royal baby be?" The article, written by CNN enterprise writer and producer John Blake, addressed recent articles describing Markle and Prince Harry's child as the very first Afro-American child born into the English monarchy.
In the article, Blake — who describes himself as interracial — warned of the dangers of putting such a label on the child, and said that "commentators who are reinforcing these stereotypes" are "totally unaware" of the damage that such labels can cause. He pointed to figures such as former President Barack Obama — the first interracial U.S. president — as having to adhere to unreasonably high expectations because he was the "first."
"Let's not turn this child into another 'Great Mixed-Race Hope,'" Blake pleaded.
He later added, "We have to get rid of race. Racism isn't the original sin; race is."
Blake concluded his article by offering up a different story worthy of his celebration.
"Imagine a child born to a couple like the Duke and Duchess, and no one obsesses over their racial mixture, or how white or black they look," he wrote. "Imagine if that child was born with dark skin, a wide nose, and kinky hair — and people would still call that child 'gorgeous.'"
"All that would matter is that the child has two parents who love him or her," Blake concluded. "That's the kind of fairy tale I'm waiting for."
What was the reaction to the article?
Some of those voicing their displeasure and criticism included political writers, TV writers, and even former CNN employees.
Former CNN anchor Soledad O'Brien addressed the snafu on Twitter, writing, "CNN needs more people of color working in the executive, decision-making ranks. Obviously."
Virginia Democratic state senate candidate Qasim Rashid wrote, "My God, @CNN just legitimately asked 'How black will the royal baby be?' **and 100% unironically warned** 'commentators who reinforce dangerous racist stereotyped are totally unaware of the damage.'"
Palm Beach Post writer Leslie Streeter added, "This is what happens when there's 0 oversight and any idiot with an official handle speaks for the whole news organization. Bring back editors who stop you from showing your entire ass."
"Empire" screenwriter Eric Haywood joked, "Guys. GUYS. Whether the royal baby is SUPER-DUPER BLACK or whether it's NORMAL, let's all agree to not be racist because that's really really uncool, mmkay?"
Former network contributor Roland Martin responded to the controversy, writing, "Hey Jeff Zucker, Amy Entelis, Ken Jautz and the @CNN leadership team. This is why [the National Association of Black Journalists] has called y'all out on no Black executives. This is one of the dumbest headlines this year. WTF?!"
CNN needs more people of color working in the executive, decision-making ranks. Obviously. https://t.co/QJzfMXM5qk— Soledad O'Brien (@Soledad O'Brien)1557188171.0
My God @CNN just legitimately asked “How black will the royal baby be?” **and 100% un-ironically warned** “comm… https://t.co/o3x7xaBOLB— Qasim Rashid, Esq. (@Qasim Rashid, Esq.)1557231006.0
@ambermruffin This is what happens when there’s o oversight and any idiot with an official handle speaks for the w… https://t.co/mp1orhKHbk— Leslie Streeter (@Leslie Streeter)1557192269.0
Hey Jeff Zucker, Amy Entelis, Ken Jautz and the @CNN leadership team, THIS is why @NABJ has called y’all out on no… https://t.co/z3mM4erlxZ— rolandsmartin (@rolandsmartin)1557194329.0
“Guys. GUYS. Whether the royal baby is SUPER-DUPER BLACK or whether it’s NORMAL, let’s all agree to not be racist b… https://t.co/ssFkyXDbai— Eric Haywood (@Eric Haywood)1557192118.0