Last week, the cancel culture mob targeted Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt actress Ellie Kemper. She was targeted after a photograph revealing that she was crowned Veiled Prophet Queen of Love and Beauty started doing the rounds on social media.
One user on Twitter claimed she “was crowned KKK queen in 1999.”
And as you can see above, Kemper was crowned Veiled Prophet Queen of Love and Beauty back in 1999 when the actress was only 19 years old.
The Veiled Prophet Organization was originally founded in 1878. Historian Thomas Spencer claims its inception was in response to a labor strike and wealthy elites asserting their power.
He wrote, “Symbolically gaining control of the streets, the elites presented St. Louis history and American history by tracing the triumphs of great men – men who happened to be the Veiled Prophet members’ ancestors.”
Spencer added, “The parade, therefore, was intended to awe the masses toward passivity with its symbolic show of power.”
The organization has also been accused of racism and according to Insider, when it was first founded in 1878 it “barred Black and Jewish Americans from participating.”
The first Black members of the organization did not join the group until 1979 after protests from the Action Committee to Improve Opportunities for Negroes (ACTION).
When the cancel culture mob first began targeting Kemper, the organization issued a statement to USA Today stating they are “dedicated to civic progress, economic contributions and charitable causes in St. Louis.”
In a separate statement they also added, “Upon reflection, the the Veiled Prophet Organization acknowledges our past and recognizes the criticism levied our way. We sincerely apologize for the actions and images from our history.”
They added, “Additionally, our lack of cultural awareness was and is wrong. We are committed to change, allowing our actions to match the organization we are today.”
“The VP Organization of today categorically rejects racism, in any form. Today’s VP is committed to diversity and equity in our membership, community service initiatives and support for the region. Our hope is that moving forward, the community sees us for who we are today and together we can move this region forward for everyone,” they continued.
The Veiled Prophet Organization concluded, “We are, and always will be committed to the success of the region and making St Louis a better place to live for all.”Their website also details a history of the parade, “America’s Birthday Parade, formally the Veiled Prophet Parade, first took place on October 8, 1878, and was sponsored by the Veiled Prophet Organization, a group of civic-minded businessmen who aimed to promote the City of St. Louis.”
It adds, “The first parade was modeled after the New Orleans Mardi Gras celebration and in the early years, floats from New Orleans were shipped to St. Louis by steamboat. Today’s colorful and imaginative floats are conceived and created right here in St. Louis by some of the best artists and craftsmen.”
“Many things have changed since 1878, but the Veiled Prophet Organization will always continue its largest gift to the community: a spectacular parade that has become one of St. Louis’ most enduring family traditions,” the brief history concludes.
While the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt actress did not address the situation at the time the photo of her as Veiled Prophet pageant queen resurfaced, Kemper recently took to Instagram to share a lengthy apology.
“Hi guys – when I was 19 years old, I decided to participate in a debutante ball in my hometown,” wrote Kemper. She adds, “The century-old organization that hosted the debutante ball had an unquestionably racist, sexist, and elitist past.”
The actress then went on to explain that she didn’t really know about the Veiled Prophet’s racist roots, choosing to take the blame for not having done any previous research at the time.
“I was not aware of this history at the time, but ignorance is no excuse,” she continued.
“I was old enough to have educated myself before getting involved.”
“I unequivocally deplore, denounce, and reject white supremacy,” further expressed the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt star, while conversely adding that “white privilege” has benefitted her in the past.
“At the same time, I acknowledge that because of my race and my privilege, I am the beneficiary of a system that has dispensed unequal justice and unequal rewards,” Kemper added.
Surprising absolutely no one, Kemper explains that this experience — namely facing cancellation by her woke peers — has almost given her a new lease on life.
“There is a very natural temptation, when you become the subject of internet criticism, to tell yourself that your detractors are getting it all wrong.”
Kemper elaborated, “But at some point last week I realized that a lot of the forces behind the criticism are forces that I’ve spent my life supporting and agreeing with.”
Ellie Kemper explains that she believes organizations like the Veiled Prophet, which may have some questionable roots, need to be held accountable — further explaining how this experience has been rather positive for her.
“I believe strongly in the values of kindness, integrity, and inclusiveness,” she continued. “I try to live my life in accordance with these values.”
“If my experience is an indication that organizations and institutions with pasts that fall short of these beliefs should be held to account, then I have to see this experience in a positive light.”
Kemper then apologised to those who may have taken offence at the more than 20-year-old photo of her being crowned pageant queen at the Veiled Prophet event, whilst promising to use her privilege to help build a better society.
“I want to apologize to the people I’ve disappointed, and I promise that moving forward I will listen, continue to educate myself, and use my privilege in support of the better society I think we’re capable of becoming,” stated the actress.
“Thanks for reading this,” Kemper concluded.
Upon issuing her lengthy apology on Instagram, the comment section on Kemper’s post has been full of support from her fellow woke Hollywood peers, and co-stars like Angela Kinsey, Mindy Kaling, and Rob Delaney — to name only but a few — who mainly remained silent when the story originally broke out.
Now that Ellie Kemper has decided to start holding accountable organizations that have questionable roots, she may want to do some research on the organizations that she is currently supporting, like Black Lives Matter or even the Democratic Party; she may find it rather educational, to say the least.
What do you make of Ellie Kemper’s apology for something she unknowingly did when she was 19 years old? Is this yet another case of a woke Hollywood celebrity who has had to apologise because they were caught?
Let us know in the comments section down below or on social media.