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Less than a week after announcing her retirement, Australian model Ajak Deng is back in business. Having voiced her criticism of racism in the fashion industry for years, Deng said she "can no longer deal with the fakes and the lies." But now, she's back with a powerful message.
Yesterday, she wrote on Instagram, "Yeah sure, giving up is easier, but who will fight the war that we are so in denial about?" The news comes as a pleasant surprise to the fashion industry, which is better off with voices (and faces) like Deng's.
Here's her statement in its entirety:
I remember my first season in Milan, walking through the the airport and saw @philipppleininternational campaign. Wishing I could one day be one of the faces up there, NOW all I can say is thank you for making my dream come true. P.s my first season in Milan, no one booked me and I was so destroyed because they won't booking black girls like me that season and thank god for my sweet and encouraging agent @meansss who told me that there was absolutely nothing wrong with me and that I was one of the most beautiful girl in the world, so wiped off those tears, come back to New York and let's change their minds one day at a time. She continued to support and still have my back even though I decided to throw it all away after our hard work and for that I came to realize that she is my spirit and a guiding angel.
I was selfish to only think of my self and forgetting the people that has always been there for me through the worst times and good times. I feel like I have touched so many young people's lives, gave them hope. Just because I come from NOTHING does not mean that I can't make something for myself and for that I will still want to continued to touched more lives. Yes sure giving up is easier but who will fight the war that we are so in denial about? I am just getting started and modeling isn't the only Thing I will be successful in, in my life time. I apologize to every kind souls/hearts that I have broken in the past week. I thought giving up was easier but I am going to stay and fight this war with kindness, forgiveness, love and support to all humanity. We are all beautiful and deserved to be respected. #BigLoveToHumanity.