“I want to begin with two words: I’m sorry,” Kelly said at the start of “Megyn Kelly Today” on Wednesday. “You may have heard yesterday that we had a discussion here about political correctness and Halloween costumes. And that conversation turned to whether it is ever OK for a person of one race to dress up as another. ”
She continued: “I defended the idea, saying as long as it was respectful and part of the Halloween costume, it seemed OK. Well, I was wrong and I am sorry.”
The former Fox News host drew heated backlash after questioning what is racist about white people darkening their skin while dressing up for Halloween or the reverse.
“When I was a kid, that was OK, so long as you were dressing up as a character,” Kelly, who was born in 1970, told an all-white panel during her show Tuesday. “I can’t keep up with the number of people we’re offending just by being normal people.”
Later Tuesday, Kelly apologized for her comments in an internal email to NBC staff, stating that she had rethought her views after “listening carefully” to her friends and teammates.
“I realize now that such behavior is indeed wrong, and I am sorry,” Kelly wrote in the email. “The history of blackface in our culture is abhorrent; the wounds too deep.”
On Wednesday, Kelly was joined on her show by Roland Martin and Amy Holmes, a co-host of PBS’s “In Principle,” for a segment on racial sensitivity.
“The Halloween costume controversy ― to me, the line is actually not that difficult to draw,” Holmes said. “There’s a difference between dressing up as, say, a character with clothing, those types of things, versus racial mockery.”
This story has been updated with more quotes from Kelly, details of her apologies and discussions in recent days and info about her future.