Phillip Faraone/FilmMagic(LOS ANGELES) — Spanish-American actress Charo has weighed in on the cultural appropriation controversy surrounding Hilaria Baldwin. The lifestyle influencer was accused in December of a "decades long grift in which she impersonates a Spanish person."
Charo, who emigrated from Spain in the 60s, and who often used her natural accent to comedic effect onscreen, spoke to Page Six about the scandal and admitted she finds the whole thing amusing.
"There’s nothing wrong if that makes her happy," said Charo. "I think it’s funny. In my opinion, it’s just funny."
"I spend all my life trying to speak English like you," The Love Boat alum added. "I hoped to [be] a sophisticated American and I was born in Murcia, Spain, where they have a very strong Castilian accent…That’s Hilaria’s obsession, probably."
"I want to speak the best English because after so many years in America nobody knows what the hell I’m talking about," continued Charo. "In the case of Hilaria, she must be [so] obsessed with everything Spanish — the tradition, flamenco — that she really went into that education and she managed to do it very well indeed."
The 70-year-old actress, born María Rosario Pilar Martínez Molina Baeza, said her respect of Hilaria Baldwin has not suffered because of the scandal.
In fact, Charo added she has always respected Baldwin as a fellow mom.
"I’m impressed that she has so many babies," the television legend laughed, who is the mom of actor Shel Rasten. "When I was pregnant I looked like a watermelon with high heels."
Since the controversy rocked the Baldwin family, Hilaria has repeatedly tried to clear the air. She first took to Instagram to share her side of the story, confessing that she was born in Boston "and grew up spending time with my family between Massachusetts and Spain."
Recently, Baldwin himself left Twitter, saying, "Twitter is like a party where everyone is screaming. Not much of a party."
By Megan Stone
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