Brooklyn Assemblyman and Orthodox Jew Dov Hikind threw a Purim costume party over the weekend. After pictures of him wearing blackface were posted to social media and backlash followed, Hikind tried to explain his costume to the New York Observer's Politicker: "I was just, I think, I was trying to emulate, you know, maybe some of these basketball players. Someone gave me a uniform, someone gave me the hair of the actual, you know, sort of a black basketball player," he said.
When it was pointed out that a costume based in centuries of racism wasn't a good choice, Hikind disagreed. "I can't imagine anyone getting offended," he told Politicker. "Purim, you know, everything goes and it's all done with respect. No one is laughing, no one is mocking. He took to his blog to say that "this is political correctness to the absurd. There is not a prejudiced bone in my body."
Earlier this month, Hikind called out fashion designer John Galliano, who was recently photographed dressing as a Hasid with a long jacket and curly sidelocks. Two years ago, Galliano was fired from Christian Dior after his anti-Semitic rant was caught on video. "If it was just anyone else, I wouldn't know what to say. But considering who this guy is, considering his background and what he's said in the past, let him explain it to all of us: Are you mocking us?"