John Legend officially spoke up about the incident with the racist paparazzo, and so much yes

So it was just a few days ago that we heard about John Legend and Chrissy Teigen’s nasty encounter with a racist paparazzi photographer at JFK airport. If you need a refresher, the man implied that Legend looked like a monkey (yeah, it was really awful). Now, Legend has responded to the racist comment while at the Variety Studio at Sundance where he’s promoting his new series. We love his response, though the fact that this even happened to him in the first place is both heartbreaking and enraging.

"Black folks have had to deal with being called monkeys for a long time and dehumanization has always been kind of a method of racism and subjugation of black people and that’s just part of American history — and it’s part of the present, apparently. We saw with the former president, Obama, whenever people wanted to discount him or discount his wife, they compared them to apes. And we’ve seen that frequently," he said.

He went on to emphasize how words cannot hurt him, which is a great mentality to have.

"I’m not hurt by someone saying that to me because I’m smarter, I’m stronger. I look down on that person that would say something like that. But it’s a shame that it still exists."

“We were right next to each other and we looked at each other like, ‘Did he really just say that?’ And he really said it. He basically called me a monkey,” Legend recalled.

It is a shame indeed. But by responding in such a thoughtful manner, Legend has risen above the lowly behavior he was subjected to, and put forward the best of himself in response.

We’re wishing Legend all the best with his new series Underground, and we’re so glad to hear that this disgusting incident has not disheartened him.

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