I kind of got into the whole "Cultural Appropriation" thing when I realized that Native Americans, who are probably the most oppressed and misrepresented people in the USA, were being fetishized and sexualized by turning their beautiful, wide range of cultures into stereotypical Halloween costumes. "Indian Chief," "Cherokee Princess," "Red Indian," and "Indian Brave" are among the samplings you can find in just about any costume shop near Halloween. But, let's not also forget the "Geisha" and "Samurai" costumes that clump Asian cultures all together into one massive clusterfuck for the sake of selling pretty, shiny dressed in a tacky polyester lotus print. We also can't forget the homegrown costumes... People putting on blackface, pretending to be gangsters and thugs, or people wearing "middle eastern" clothing with fake bombs strappped to their chest...
Is this what we've come down to? Instead of getting creative with our costumes or buying something fun and magical, or silly and whimsical. I mean, who doesn't want to go to a Halloween party as a penis? I do. Penises are cool. But, WHY are be turning minorities into costumes? When did it become okay to demean the culture of others to polyester and stereotypes? Why are we making light of sacred objects like warbonnets?
It's not okay. I might be a white, American girl with no culture to speak of, but that doesn't mean that I can't say, "hey, reconsider that costume because it's fucking insensitive." Below I've listed some resources, but first, how do you determine whether your halloween costume makes you look like a dick?
a. It is a costume related to someone's culture of heritage.
b. It is a costume depicting a particular race of people.
If you meet a or b or both, maybe you should give it some thought for sensitivity. If you don't meet these qualifications, congrats, your costume is NOT culturally inappropriate / racist.
My Identity Is Not A Costume
An Open Letter To Non-Native in Headdresses
But Why Can't I Wear A Hipster Headdress?
A Sampling of The Racism For Sale
On Why Prancing Around In a Warbonnet And Warpaint Is'nt Appreciating Native Culture
Cultural Appropriation And Costumes
Dia De Los Muertos is NOT Your Halloween
Cultural Appropriation And Halloween
SO, NSG, do you think dressing up as other cultures of races is racist?