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Hawaii Man Wears Blackface In Court And Goes On Racist Rant During Sentencing For Road Rage Incident

KHON2 News/YouTube

An Oahu man convicted of attempted 2nd degree murder wore blackface to his sentencing hearing last week. There, he delivered a rant about his treatment by the court and…

Look, this is a weird one. Stay with me.

In 2016, Mark Char was arrested after stabbing three people on the freeway. He claims it was self-defense, however witnesses said otherwise.

In March of this year, he was convicted of attempted murder and two counts of assault.

Char tried to argue it was self-defense. He claimed that the other driver kept cutting him off.

When they both pulled over, he confronted the other driver, when he was attacked. He used his knife to protect himself, according to his story.

The victims testified that Char was the one slamming his breaks on in front of their car. They pulled over to avoid him, however he did the same, getting out of his car and pepper spraying them.

That was when the fight began. A good Samaritan was warned off by one of the victims that he should leave but tried to help and was attacked anyway.

Which brings us to the blackface.

During his sentencing, Char appeared to have used a permanent marker to darken his face.

In his statement he called his attorney incompetent, and says he was not given a fair trial.

“Now this kangaroo court is trying to give me a life sentence for me trying to protect and defend myself against the attack from three guys ― in essence, treating me like a black man.”

Char added, in his sentencing statement:

“So today, I’m going to be a black man.”

This is a doozy.

On one hand, yeah, our country doesn’t treat black people very well. They are overrepresented as the perpetrators of crime.

This is especially true on news media where they are more likely to have their mugshot shown or otherwise depicted as more threatening than their white counterparts.

On the other hand, Char is acting like he wasn’t given any kind of fair attempt at a trial and that his attorney was an idiot. This makes it seem less like he’s trying to make a statement on the deplorable treatment of black people in this country and more like he’s trying to cancel the justifications for his conviction.

It’s difficult to defend someone who is so combative that he attacks his representation and the court itself.

Not to mention all the witnesses who testified against him.

Judge Todd Eddins was having none of it.

He said:

“This continues a pattern of disruptive behavior designed to undermine the administration of justice.”

The judge added:

“What you need to do is look in the mirror. And if you look in the mirror, Mr. Char, you’re not gonna see a black person. You’re gonna see a menace. You’re gonna see a menace to society.”

Despite his blackface rant, Char was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole. He also must pay $1900 to one of his victims.

Sentencing disparities were not a factor in this case, they are real and well documented. To learn more, the book The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness is available here.


Written by Ben Acosta

Ben Acosta is an Arizona-based fiction author and freelance writer. In his free time, he critiques media and acts in local stage productions.