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What started off as an innocent Christmas photo with friends has sparked quite the conversation on social media. It all started when this image of actor Lance Gross, his wife Rebecca and their friends on vacation together was shared. It shows all the friends coupled up — with the exception of one woman:

Soon after, commenters started remarking on the fact that the woman, who is of a darker complexion, happens to be the only one by herself. And not only is she by herself, but her facial expression is meant to feign that she feels some type of way about it. On the other hand, all of the men in the picture are cuddled up quite warmly with their significant others, women who all happen to be a lighter complexion.

Some weren’t too happy about the image. “This picture says whte supremacy has won the self hate is deep,” one person said while another stated, “Should I have an issue that all the ‘wives’ are light-skinned or that the one brown skin sister doesn’t have a mate or is not in a ‘couple’! What the hell is going on here?”

But there were also people who defended the image. As one person put it, “This is a nice couples picture. The fact that all y’all can see is skin tone is appalling.”

Another person defending the picture is the woman going solo in it. According to BlackGirlLongHair, the woman in the picture spoke out on social media and said that she does have a boyfriend but he couldn’t make it on the couple’s trip.

“ALL OF US in this photo are beautiful Black people” she said. “NEWSFLASH: Black people come in ALL shades!! And just so everyone can RELAX, the photo is a annual tradition– ITS A JOKE! I’m dating someone special, but he didn’t come to Big Bear this year. I take a pic like this EVERY YEAR making fun of the fact that I’m the only single one in the couples pic. Calm down people! Go enjoy your family, and stop worrying about OURS!!”

Lance Gross is also clearing things up (kind of) for those criticizing the picture. He shared this year’s photo, as well as the ones from 2015 and 2014, and the mystery woman is indeed by herself in each image. As he said, it’s part of an inside joke:


But what do you think? People obviously took what was considered a joke to be a big no-no based on the fact that the woman is darker than all of the women who are part of a couple. Were you bothered in any way by the image?


Images via Instagram 

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