Mother who covered 3-yr-old daughter in black paint for Halloween says she wasn't being racist
The mother, Claire Flynn, said the costume choice was in no way intended to be offensive and that anyone who thinks she's racist 'needs to get a grip'
A mother who painted her daughter's whole body black for Halloween says anyone who thinks she's racist "needs to get a grip." Three-year-old Sienna was dressed as a "Lookie Lookie" man by her mum Claire Flynn, a nursery worker. The nickname is used to describe beach traders at foreign holiday resorts, Daily Mail reports.
Sienna was coated head-to-toe in black paint in a photo posted by the 26-year-old woman on Facebook with a caption that read: "Happy Halloween from Benidorm's finest... lookie lookie." The costume choice was in no way intended to be offensive, Claire added, and that anyone who thinks so needs to "get a grip".
In a conversation with the Daily Record, Claire said: "I'm not going to apologize for this or delete my post. If people want to be all PC about it they need to take a look at themselves. It's really not an issue. We were in Magaluf on holiday in September and Sienna got a toy monkey from the Lookie Lookie men. She loved them and wanted to go back and see them every day. That's when I had the idea. I'm just a creative person and that's what Halloween is all about. It's a kid in a costume wearing facepaint. People need to get a grip. I'm not going to bow down to anyone that has an issue with this. I'm not a racist and I've not seen anyone calling me a racist and I'm definitely not one. People dress up as Jimmy Saville and no one calls them a pedophile and the people who dress up as Hitler don't get called supporters of Nazi propaganda either."
Claire dressed her daughter up in the staff room at Happy Feet Nursery in Larkhall, Scotland where she works. None of her colleagues had a problem with the outfit, she claims. She said: "My boss at work is absolutely fine about it. She thinks the complaints are ridiculous. I've worked as a nursery nurse for 10 years, with people of all different races and cultures, so I don't have to defend myself. Parents from the nursery have been sharing it online too and everyone says it's brilliant. No one cared when we went guising round the doors either."
Claire referenced the criticism given to a Scottish woman who had recently dressed up as Celtic player Dedryck Boyata, and said she's having none of that. She said: "That woman was so intimidated by the online backlash to her post that she deleted her social media. People were going crazy at her and she was obviously scared. It's ludicrous. I'm not backing down and I'm happy to answer to it."
While many people slamming the Boyata outfit were American, Claire believes Scots will not be as offended by her choice of costume for her daughter as racism is "less of an issue here."
She said: "I can understand the Americans being angry, because of the way blacks were treated over there. I don't think we have that same problem here in Scotland. I don't think racism exists in the same context and people don't get as upset about it." The world has "gone PC mad", according to Claire. "Everyone needs to calm down and stop being so sensitive," she added.
That said, numerous comments on the Facebook post were supportive, including one from her boss, Shirley Clark, who said: "That's amazing Claire, funniest one I've seen." Speaking to the Daily Record, the Happy Feet managing director also said: "Claire is always empathetic towards the children, she isn't racist in any way. It was just a fun Halloween costume."