What a wild headline. At the Sesame Street Place in Philly two black girls were waving and trying to get the attention of the Rosita character as it was walking towards them. Rosita was waving at everyone else and giving out high-fives, but a video that went viral on twitter shows her seemingly shaking her head and waving off the kids.
The family of the girls lawyered up and their attorney said, “While we hate to speculate and consider ‘race’ as the motivating factor, which would explain the performer’s actions, such actions both before and after the young girls reached out only leads us to one conclusion”. And later said, “Although Sesame Place purports to stand for inclusivity and equality, this was not demonstrated this past Saturday. We are currently investigating this incident and will exercise every legal remedy possible to further protect this family”. The internet seemed to take the side of the girls.
The response of Sesame Place was to implement bias training for their employees. The performer who was in the Rosita costume said that the gesture was saying no to picking the children up for a photo, and the intent was not to dismiss or ignore them.
Here’s the video of the interaction.
And here is Sesame Street’s official response.