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Edinburgh University Graduate Dressed As Grim Reaper Banned From Halloween Party For 'Black Face'

Gangster, mental patient and 'camp men' costumes are also banned.

02/11/2016 15:27 | Updated 03 November 2016

A graduate who painted his face black as part of a grim reaper Halloween costume was turned away from a university party in case it caused offence. 

Edinburgh University grad Ryan Lytwyn, 22, used black, white and red paint to decorate his face, adding a black cloak to complete the costume.   

Ryan Lytwyn SWNScom
Ryan was turned away from the party in case his costume caused racial offence

But when he arrived at the Student Association event, he was immediately turned away by door staff who said fellow Halloween revellers “might complain”.

“Everyone thinks it’s ridiculous,” the former politics student said. “I felt like I was accused of blacking up which in itself is offensive to me. It’s also quite bizarre to compare the Grim Reaper to that as well.”

“I asked them if my makeup had caused offence and the manager answered no, but that some might find it offensive,” Ryan added. 

“They told me I had to leave unless I removed the makeup. To be singled out in the queue was embarrassing.” 

Ryan Lytwyn SWNScom
The politics grad was allowed in after he wiped his face

Ryan, who now works for the charity, was allowed into the student event after wiping his face. 

The Student Association has defended its decision, with vice-president Jenna Kelly telling SWNS that “blackface is racist and outdated - it is not permitted under any circumstances in our venues”.

Following a series of incidents involving undergraduates “blacking up”, the Student Association banned students from dressing up as Mexicans, gangsters, mental patients and “camp men” earlier this year. 

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