After a reception by Hesse's Prime Minister Boris Rhein (CDU), a carnival society apologized for a black-painted man sent to the event. "Fastnacht should be there for everyone and this is also very important to us," said a spokeswoman for the 1st Ober-Mörler carnival society "Mörlau" on Sunday. We apologize "expressly to all people we may have hurt".
The figure referred to by the association as "Mohr" is considered a symbol of the Ober-Mörlener Fastnacht and can be found in the coat of arms of the carnival society, as was read on the association's website on Saturday. When white people wear makeup to stereotype black people, it's called "blackfacing." The practice is controversial and has been criticized as racist.
The board is taking the matter very seriously, the spokeswoman said. "For this reason, we have decided to remove the corresponding images and content on our social media pages and to cancel Mohren's public appearances with immediate effect, as we do not want to offend anyone."
Rhein and his wife Tanja Raab-Rhein received representatives of the Hessian carnival clubs in Biebrich Castle on Saturday. "The clubs decide for themselves which club members they want to attend the reception with," said a spokesman for the State Chancellery on Saturday.