Former Lenny Letter writer Zinzi Clemmons calls for black women "to divest from Lena Dunham."
Lena Dunham is facing serious criticism from one of her former writers, Zinzi Clemmons, who quit the HBO star's Lenny Letter because of Dunham's "hipster racism" as well as her defense of a former "Girls" writer accused of sexually assaulting actress Aurora Perrineau.
"It is time for women of color - black women in particular - to divest from Lena Dunham," the black writer tweeted Sunday, along with a screenshot of a lengthy statement she posted on Facebook Sunday.
"As a result of Lena Dunham’s statements, I have decided that I will no longer write for Lenny Letter," Clemmons wrote. "For all your writers who are outraged about what she did, I encourage you to do the same. Especially women of color. She cannot have our words if she cannot respect us."
The pair first met in the mid-2000s at Brown University, but Clemmons is now speaking out, claiming that one of the women in Dunham's inner circle was "known to use the N-word in conversation in order to be provocative, and if she was ever called on it, she would say 'it's just a joke.'"
"Back in college, I avoided those people like the plague because of their well-known racism," she added. "I'd call their strain 'hipster racism,' which typically uses sarcasm as a cover, and in the end, it looks a lot like gaslighting - 'It's just a joke. Why are you overreacting?' is a comment response to these kinds of statements."
Clemmons comments come after Dunham faced backlash last week for defending "Girls" writer Murray Miller with the following joint statement with the show's executive producer Jenni Konner:
"During the windfall of deeply necessary accusations over the last few months in Hollywood, we have been thrilled to see so many women's voices heard and dark experiences in this industry justified. It's a hugely important time of change and, like every feminist in Hollywood and beyond, we celebrate. But during every time of change there are also incidences of the culture, in its enthusiasm and zeal, taking down the wrong targets. We believe, having worked closely with him for more than half a decade, that is the case with Murray Miler. While our first instinct is to listen to every woman's story, our insider knowledge of Murray's situation makes us confident that sadly this accusation is one of the 3 percent of assault cases that are misreported every year."
Los Angeles police are currently investigating Perrineau's allegations that Miller raped her in 2012 when she was 17, TheWrap reported Saturday. Perrineau, the daughter of "Lost" star Harold Perrineau, starred in 2015 movie "Jem and the Holograms," and had a small role in Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt's sci-fi romance "Passengers."
Miller’s attorney, Matthew Walerstein, said in a statement he "categorically and vehemently denies Ms. Perrineau’s outrageous claims," adding his legal team has "gathered overwhelming evidence directly contradicting these false and offensive claims."
Dunham apologized for her statement by saying, "I naively believed it was important to share my perspective on my friend's situation as it has transpired behind the scenes over the last few months. I now understand that it was absolutely the wrong time to come forward with such a statement and I am so sorry."
Clemmons added in her scathing takedown of Dunham that Perrineau's allegations against Miller were particularly affecting because one of her friends in college was put in a similar situation by "someone in Lena's circle."
"One of my best friends was victimized in almost the exact same way by someone in Lena’s circle. It was never addressed, and he continues to move in those circles and has a powerful job," Clemmons wrote.
My statement on why I will no longer write for @lennyletter, and the behavior I witnessed firsthand from @lenadunham's friends.— zinziclemmons (@zinziclemmons) November 19, 2017
It is time for women of color--black women in particular--to divest from Lena Dunham. pic.twitter.com/dxOWCLhTpA