Dutch celebs come out against Zwarte Piet
Dozens of Dutch celebrities have decided to enter the debate on Zwarte Piet. Should Sinterklaas's helper remain black? Or is a multicolored Piet better? These celebrities give their opinion on the Facebook page Piet Makeover.
The title of the Facebook page says it all. The Dutch celebrities request a small makeover for Zwarte Piet.
This positive approach was devised by Anousha Nzume, who says that a large group of Dutch people are open to adapting Piet. It is for those people that she created Piet Makeover. "It's really not fun if a child with dark skin is still called 'Pietje' at school," Nzume says, "Zwarte Piet has been changed considerably in recent decades, he's not an ogre anymore, his roe is gone as well as his big earrings and big red lips. So why not his color too?"
Rossana Kluivert was one of the first facebookers to vote for a makeover. "Those who are good get sweets, those who are naughty the roe. That is not what I want to teach my child."
Jorgen Raymann recorded a film. "It's getting so extreme that the fun of the festival gets lost. With a little makeover of Zwarte Piet everyone can enjoy it!" Tanja Jess is also for "A very small adjustment with a very large return."
Peter R. de Vries makes a connection with his work as a crime reporter. His view was not well received by everyone and yesterday he received death threats for it. "A children's party can of course be an excuse to belittle another population. Zwarte Piet deserves a makeover. Make him a colorful or variegated Piet: everyone happy."
"Please share if you care," Paul de Leeuw exclaims in his video. He hopes to see Sinterklaas with a white Piet, a lesbian Piet, a Moroccan Piet, a whine Piet, a bare Piet, all with the same clothes.
It is noticeable that the Facebook page is not dominated by positive reactions. "Unfortunately there is some negativity, but we do not let it get us down. This is for us to celebrate a traditional festival which is fine for all children!" she says