Government - Trudeau In Brownface Scandal
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has apologized after Time Magazine unearthed what he probably hoped was a forgotten photo of him wearing an Aladdin costume complete with heavy brownface make-up.
"In 2001, when I was a teacher in Vancouver, I attended an end-of-year gala, the theme was Arabian nights. I dressed up in an Aladdin costume and put makeup on. I shouldn't have done it. I should have known better, but I didn't and I'm really sorry," said Trudeau. "It was something I should not have done. I didn't think it was racist at the time, but now I see, it was a racist thing to do."
Trudeau added, "I apologize profoundly," and, "I regret it deeply. I'm deeply sorry I did that, I should have known better."
The photograph, which had been rumoured for years but had not yet been published in the corporate media, appears in the 2000-2001 yearbook of West Point Grey Academy. Then 29-years old, Trudeau was a teacher at the private day school.
The photo was clearly pushed out to the media to kneecap Trudeau's re-election campaign. Canada's election is in just over 30 days, and Trudeau had just began to catch up to his Conservative Party challenger in the polls.
Trudeau has been saddled with scandals; he was found to have breached ethics rules by taking a holiday to the Caribbean island owned by the Aga Khan, a billionaire Muslim leader. And earlier this year, Trudeau was found to have violated conflict-of-interest laws by trying to improperly influence a minister into cutting a deal for a company facing a corruption trial.
It will be up to Canadian voters to determine if that is more important than the victories of Trudeau and his government, including giving Canada its first gender-balanced cabinet, and moving several MPs of South Asian origin or ancestry into key ministerial positions; extending the country's Human Rights laws to protect gender identity; and legalizing cannabis.
Trudeau is also reminding voters that the last time the Conservatives were in power, they raised the retirement age to 67 - Trudeau corrected that back to 65 when he came into power in 2015.