Outstanding article, an education that is not taught in school.
Often wondered who Jim Crow was.
Mr Northam's blackface controversy is America's third major blackface scandal in a matter of months.
In January, journalist Megyn Kelly formally left NBC after defending blackface on her show in October.
And also in January, Florida's secretary of state Michael Ertel resigned after photos emerged of him wearing blackface when he dressed up as a Hurricane Katrina victim for a costume party.
Blackface has a long and troubling history in the United States, so one must wonder why so many prominent Americans are unaware of or indifferent to the harm it causes.
Tensions surrounding blackface stem from the fact that America remains unwilling to educate people about the history of blackface, according to Howard University professor Greg Carr.
"It is not taught at all in school. Even in the most basic sense," says Prof Carr. "If it were taught, it would become problematic in America because the vestiges of blackface minstrelsy are a deep part of American culture."
The practice of blackface grew in popularity in the 1830s as white actors would darken their faces with a mixture of charcoal, grease, and soot and perform as caricatures of African-Americans.
The purpose of these performances was to demean and dehumanise African-Americans, and it should come as no surprise that this minstrel theatre of anti-black propaganda grew in popularity as the call for the abolition of slavery increased.
It became common for Americans to refer to black men as Jim Crow, and the widespread popularity of Mr Rice's song Jump Jim Crow made many foreigners believe it was the national anthem.