Julianne Hough has responded to the backlash surrounding "The Activist". When addressing the criticism, the former "Dancing with the Stars" pro apologized once again for wearing blackface back in 2013.
The 33-year-old shared her statement on Instagram on Tuesday, September 14. "I heard you say that the show was performative, promoted pseudo-activism over real activism, felt done-deaf, like 'Black Mirror', 'The Hunger Games', and that the hosts weren't qualified to assess activism because we are celebrities and not activists," she began.
"I heard you say there was hypocrisy in the show because at the root of activism is a fight against capitalism and the trauma that it causes so many people and that the show itself felt like a shiny capitalistic endeavor," she continued. "I also heard you say that trying to value one cause over another felt like the Oppression Olympics and totally missed and disrespected the many activists who have been killed, assaulted and faced various abuses fighting for their causes."
"And because of this, there is a feeling of insult, dehumanization, insensitivity and hurt that is being rightfully felt," the younger sister of Derek Hough added. "I do not claim to be an activist and wholeheartedly agree that the judging aspect of the show missed the mark and furthermore, that I am not qualified to act as a judge."
Julianne then apologized for dressing up in blackface at a 2013 Halloween party. At that time, she showed up as Uzo Aduba's "Crazy Eyes" from "Orange Is the New Black". Admitting that she regrets her act to this day, she wrote, "Wearing blackface was a poor choice based on my own white privilege and my own white body bias that hurt people and is something I regret doing to this day."
"It feels important for me to share that the original reason I signed on to this show was because I was really excited to be a part of something that highlights, and is centered around sharing activists' work on a larger platform," she further explained, before concluding her message, "I also understand that there is no response that I could share that would make everyone happy, however, I want you to know that this is a conversation and I am still listening."
Aside from Julianne, Priyanka Chopra and Usher are tapped to be judges on the competition series. The show, which will air five times a week, will debut on October 22 on both CBS and Paramount+ streaming service.