I am the same age as Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam. As he was selecting pictures for his medical school yearbook page, I was flying helicopters for the United States Navy.
I’m not sure about blackface in Virginia in 1984. I do know I attended flight school not long after, geographically next door to where one of the last lynchings took place in the United States Mobile, Ala., in 1981.
But blackface and KKK costumes were not acceptable (or thought to be “funny”) in my fraternity at Rutgers University (even though another fraternity threw rocks at the first gay pride parade); or the Navy (which was not very enlightened either, the Tailhook scandal was years in the future).