Ellie Kemper has issued a public apology for participating in a debutante ball as a teenager that has recently come under the limelight for the organization’s debatable history. The infamous organization is The Veiled Prophet Ball founded in 1878 in Missouri by former Confederate officers. Back in 1999, Kemper had been a part of the ball and emerged victorious as the “Queen of Love and Beauty.”
In an Instagram post on Monday, actress Ellie Kemper addressed the controversy that had been doing the rounds on social media. She spoke of an organization that had an “unquestionably racist, sexist and elitist past.” While Kemper was ignorant of the organization’s history, she admitted her shortcomings in remaining uneducated about the place before getting involved.
Kemper affirmed, “I unequivocally deplore, denounce, and reject white supremacy.” She also went on to acknowledge that her race has undoubtedly made her a product of a “system that has dispensed unequal justice and unequal rewards.” The actress also clarified how the principles of kindness, inclusiveness, and integrity have been a significant part of her lifestyle to date.
The 41-year-old actress’s statement also brought out a response from the organization itself. In conversation with Fox News, the Veiled Prophet not only acknowledged their mistakes but also apologized for their actions. St. Louis based organization said they now “categorically reject racism in any form” and are committed to making efforts in increasing diversity in their membership.
Additionally, the Veiled Prophet also expressed a hope for the community to view them for who they are today, instead of who they had been in the past. From then till now, the organization has served to not only make the region a success but also to make St. Louis a “better place to live for all.” The organization that had created a stir on social media was found to admit that they are wholly dedicated to “civic progress, economic contributions and charitable causes in St. Louis.”
Ellie Kemper, who rose to fame for her roles in “The Office” and “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, was reprimanded on social media when Twitter users brought her participation in the ball. Several Twitter users brought out a series of hidden facts about the organization which included the absence of Black members till 1979, as mentioned in the St. Louis Post Dispatch.
Moreover, a 2014 Atlantic article had said the purpose of the organization was only to solicit “a response to growing labor unrest in the city, much of it involving cooperation between white and black workers.” As a result, Ellie Kemper took to Instagram to apologize to “all the people I’ve disappointed,” and said that she will work on listening and educating herself to support the society “we’re capable of becoming.”