A white content creator is stirring up controversy after he says he identified as Black.
Jerry Banfield, a streamer partnered with Facebook Gaming, announced Wednesday (February 16) that he is now identifying as a Black man despite being born white. This came during a Facebook livestream, where he has over 2 million followers.
“Today I’m grateful I have the courage to do something I’ve been meaning to do for a very long time. For years I’ve wanted to be black, I’m tired of being white,” Banfield starts. “Let’s just get to the point: I am now identifying as a Black man and an African American. I no longer wish to be identified as a white man… I’ve been wanting to make that change for a long time.”
The streamer went on to explain how he grew up around Black children but was constantly rejected because of his skin color. He also compared changing his racial identity to someone coming out as transgender.
“I just woke up and had the epiphany today that if a man or a woman can look down at their genitals, and choose whatever gender they want to be regardless of their biology, regardless of their DNA, regardless of what they said they were in the past… and that’s fully supported? Then I’m absolutely fully supported in changing my race.”
“Thank you to everyone who alerted us to a livestream this morning which ran counter to the spirit of Black History Month. We have cut ties with the creator in question, removing them from our official programs, including access to monetization features, effective today.”
Following his demonetization, Banfield fired back at the company in a series of now-deleted Facebook posts. These posts were screen-captured and shared by Dexerto. In one of the posts, he claims Facebook was discriminating against him:
“Facebook Gaming says my post was somehow hate speech because I am identifying as black and African American now! How is that possible? The only way this makes sense is if I am not allowed to declare myself as black because of my current skin tone which by definition is discrimination.”
Banfield is still allowed to stream on Facebook, but he’s no longer able to make money on the platform. He even referenced the ongoing controversy in his Thursday stream, which is titled “I can change my gender but not my race?”
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