During a Friday discussion on the topic, McCain said she received backlash for sporting cornrows earlier this year but didn’t quite understand why.
“I really love wearing my hair like that,” she said. “I think I look pretty that way, but there were people online who were offended. And I never want to do anything to offend anyone and I never want to be insensitive to anyone’s culture.”
McCain turned to her Black co-hosts for advice, asking if cornrows are an “inappropriate hairstyle” for her to wear as a white woman. Conservative guest co-host Tara Setmayer disagreed, saying the former Fox contributor should not have to apologize for how she chooses to wear her hair.
Co-host Sunny Hostin quickly pointed out how sporting the braids without acknowledging the culture from which it came could prove problematic, however.
“I think it is insulting to people like me, African-American people, when people say, “oh, you’re wearing Bo Derek braids,'” Hostin said, adding she received those comments a lot when she wore cornrows as a child. “And it’s like no, I’m wearing Black braid because we have been wearing this since — .”
“They’re Fulani braids,” Setmayer cut in.
“Exactly. So it’s insulting when people appropriate it to the point that’s where people thinks it comes from,” Hostin continued.
Fans quickly jumped to McCain’ defense, arguing she should be able to wear her hair however she wants and that one culture doesn’t “own” braids/cornrows.
“Don’t EVER apologize for wearing four french braids in your hair, girl! Never ever!” one Instagram user wrote. “Your co-host @sunnyhotin is constantly looking down her nose at you because you’re white. She’s a racist. Watch your back.”
“Love you @meghanmccain and keep being yourself,” wrote another. “Don’t let anyone tell you different and keep wearing your braids you look beautiful with or with out them! 🇺🇸♥🇵🇷”
Others chimed in on Twitter.
WHAT. IS. WRONG. WITH. MEGHAN. MCCAIN. WEARING. BRAIDS?? It’s the same question I had for critics of @KimKardashian when she braided her hair. Who the hell owns cornrows? And who gave you the right to judge a woman or tell a woman how to look? #TheView @MeghanMcCain
— That Fairuza (@I_Am_Fairuza) July 15, 2018
#theview Meghan McCain
Wear your braids proudly. U have hair long enough to braid. U looked very pretty. Heidi wore braids. All cultures wear braids. U may not agree but it appears to be an antiwhite thing. Ridiculous.
— Remybehr (@remybehr) July 14, 2018
Hey Meghan, FYI, I luv your hair in braids! You look sooo cute in them! Please don’t stop wearing your hair in braids. Ignore the hate! And this is coming from a woman that is African American. Not offensive AT ALL💯
— ⚡️Chyna Graham⚡️ (@Chyna_Graham) July 16, 2018
So disappointed in Meghan McCain for bowing down to Sunny for wearing braids. So, white girls can’t wear braids now? I have, and will continue to do so. Meghan, you are my fave on this racially divisive program. Please stay true to yourself.
— Staci DiBenedetto (@StaciDiBenedet2) July 13, 2018
At the end of the segment, McCain said she’d continue wearing her hair in braids “as long as everyone is okay with it.”
Watch more in the clip above.