Meet Zachary Crane. He’s a 30-year-old gay Instagrammer and artist with over 22,000 followers. Alongside his art (some of which is pretty good), he regularly posts shirtless selfies, gym selfies, bathroom selfies, underwear selfies, beach selfies, bedroom selfies, etc., etc. You get the idea.
Occasionally he’ll post “patriotic” photos of himself proudly wearing Donald Trump t-shirts:
This year for Halloween, Crane decided to dress up as Storm from X-Men. NBD, right? Wrong. His costume was complete with Storm’s signature shock of white hair, her yellow cape, and… her dark skin.
Not surprisingly, people weren’t so into a white dude wearing blackface for Halloween. They immediately began calling out Crane’s costume choice. (If you really need a lesson on the deeply racist history of blackface, here’s a start.)
In true Trump supporter fashion, Crane responded to the criticism by unapologetically playing the victim.
“I’m fully aware that everyone is crying over my costume and calling me a racist piece of shit… like seriously,” he said in a now-deleted Instagram post. “Just to let everyone know, I love Storm. Have ever since I was a kid.”
Apparently, in Crane’s warped, white imagination, his deep, long-felt appreciation of the African American comic book character makes it OK for him to put on blackface.
In the statement, Crane added that as a result of his costume, he has received death threats. While nobody is arguing it’s acceptable to send death threats on Instagram, that doesn’t really excuse the original offense.
A deeper dive into Crane’s Instagram account shows this isn’t the first time he’s hinted uncomfortably at white supremacy on social media:
He seems like a real keeper, no?