Racist Government Officials Call Michelle Obama ‘An Ape In Heels,’ Then Insist, ‘I’m Not Racist!’

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Hasn’t Michelle Obama’s week been shitty enough?

Two government officials in Clay, West Virginia are making headlines for their racist comments about Michelle Obama. As reported by the Washington Post and Jezebel, the then-director of Clay County Development Corp. Pamela Ramsay Taylor celebrated Donald Trump’s victory with these remarks on Facebook:


“It will be so refreshing to have a classy, beautiful, dignified First Lady back in the White House. I’m tired of seeing an ape in heels.”

Clay’s mayor, Beverly Whaling, commented, “Just made my day Pam.”

The comments were screenshotted and shared across social media, so by the time Whaling and Taylor took them down they had already gone viral and a petition was circulating asking for both women to be fired.

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Whaling insisted that she wasn’t racist in a statement to the Washington Post, saying:

“My comment was not intended to be racist at all...I was referring to my day being made for a change in the White House! I am truly sorry for any hard feelings this may have caused! Those who know me know that I’m not of any way racist! Again, I would like to apologize for this getting out of hand!”

Taylor has called the outcry against her comments is a “hate crime against me” and that she intends to file lawsuits against everyone she thinks has slandered her or libeled her.


Taylor has since been removed from her position but Whaling is still in office.

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As you should know, there is a long and racist history of comparing black people to apes, and this is far from the first time a racist has compared Michelle Obama to one, unfortunately.

A helpful reminder: Saying you’re not racist doesn’t make you not racist. If you say racist things or commit racist actions, you’re fucking racist. And Whaling and Taylor are both incredibly racist. 

Top photo: Facebook/Michelle Obama

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Erika W. Smith is BUST's digital editorial director. You can follow her on Twitter and Instagram @erikawynn and email her at erikawsmith@bust.com.

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