It has been almost a week since Jodi Brown’s video of her Black daughters being ignored at Sesame Place went viral. On Saturday (July 16), Brown took her kids to the Philadelphia theme park to enjoy a parade of Sesame Street characters. As the life-sized muppets marched down the street, the little girls were beyond excited to see Rosita coming their way. In the viral video, Rosita only seems to acknowledge the non-Black kids in the crowd.
After facing much backlash, Sesame Place released a couple of statements. In one, the theme park claimed the performer’s costume made it hard for the character to see and the snub was unintentional. “The Rosita performer did not intentionally ignore the girls and is devastated about the misunderstanding,” it read in part. After Sesame Place’s apologies, more and more videos of similar situations began to surface online.
Today (July 22), another video has surfaced discrediting the theme park’s original statements. TMZ released a video shot by a guest across the street showing the exact moment Brown’s children were ignored by Rosita. The footage shows a wider angle and just after the blue character dances past the Black girls, she stops to interact with an audience member who appears to be white. Since the incident, Brown has retained B’Ivory LaMarr as an attorney. On Wednesday (July 20), Brown, LaMarr and activist Tamika D. Mallory held a press conference in front of Sesame Workshop in New York. During the conference, they called for the termination of the Rosita performer.
LaMarr also spoke about releasing footage showing “what really happened.” It appears today’s newly released video is what he was referring to. The Bucks County Courier Times, a local Philadelphia newspaper, said reps for Sesame Place released another statement yesterday (July 21). “We want to listen to them to understand how the experience impacted their family and to understand what we can do better for them and all guests who visit our parks,” the statement read. It continued, “We are committed to learning all we can from this situation to make meaningful change. We want every child who comes to our park to feel included, seen and inspired.”
— FroBabies (@Frobabies) July 22, 2022