White Lady Cornrows in Duluth

For the second time, Duluth has been mentioned on the podcast Yo, is this Racist? The show, hosted by Andrew Ti and Tawny Newsome, answers questions from listeners about whether given subjects are an example of racism or not. The Aug. 3 episode was recorded live in Minneapolis, so Newsome’s reference to Duluth was perhaps more carefully selected than random.

When a caller brings up an instance where a white camp counselor showed up to breakfast with cornrows — hair braided closely to the scalp — Ti likens it to a white lady vacationing in the Caribbean who gets her hair braided. Newsome draws out the narrative further by suggesting such a thing happens at a Sandals resort in Jamaica “and then they come home to Duluth.”

Not quite wanting to fully cast the aspersion on Duluth, Newsome clarifies: “… or wherever. Love Duluth, legit.”

She continues: “They come home to Duluth and they still got those microbraids in … just so much scalp exposed. You can just see their scalp. It’s like I’m looking at a map of early Pangaea.”

The show’s previous reference to Duluth was in August 2021, when a caller asked whether naming a bike trail in Duluth “Straight Outta Congdon” would be racist.

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