(Closed) “Culture not a costume” – WDYT?

posted 8 years ago in Holidays
Post # 121
Member
9816 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

@CanadianMermaid: All are welcome on the moon excursion. We have punch and pie.

Post # 123
Member
9816 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

@abbyful: That’s really the point isn’t it, someone is always going to find something offensive, where do you actually draw the line as in stop getting companies to manufacture these outfits or whatever? I don’t particularly enjoy seeing 5 year olds in my neighborhood dressed up in pimp costumes, but you know what? Those are other people’s parenting choices and if I don’t want people bitching about my choices, I can walk the other way. Costumes that are intended to be racist or inflammatory in a public setting I have no problem with people taking issue with. We should all be able to enjoy our lives without others making a scene, but seriously sometimes it just gets out of control and people use it as an excuse to make their agenda everyone else’s problem. That’s what I don’t like.

 

Post # 124
Member
360 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2011 - Gardens of the World

@abbyful: *sigh* The difference with costumes that represent cultural stereotypes is that they reinforce those stereotypes and the unending cycle of power that suppresses these cultures. They reinforce the status quo, in other words. Yes, many things can be found offensive by people. But what is completely frightening about this thread is that so many people here are perfectly happy to use that as an excuse to go on perpetuating the cycle of oppression. Oppression doesnt have to be a blatant, overt act of power such as a hate crime. The reason it is possible for racial hate crimes to occur is because of these narratives that these “small” acts of oppression “are ok, because it is just for fun and no one REALLY believes in those stereotypes.”

Post # 125
Member
7776 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

@abbyful: I was thinking the same thing. In order to be completely inoffensive, by that defintion, we would have to cease to be. Even sitting in our homes having no other human interaction could be considered offensive to some people.

 

And a very relevant youtube video. It made me laugh my ass off.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-JxA9Rvs8I

Post # 127
Member
360 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2011 - Gardens of the World

@abbyful: I will say it again- It becomes oppressive because it reinforces the dominant power structures (facilitated by narratives that create stereotypes) that keep minorities down. The reason narratives like these are so powerful is because they blind people into thinking they are ok.

Post # 129
Member
360 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2011 - Gardens of the World

@abbyful: Never underestimate the power of symbols (and by symbols I mean language, costumes, etc). The very fact that the stand taken up by these college students has caused such a reaction on this thread shows that symbols are powerful and shape the way we see the world. Im going to bow out of the discussion now because it is clear your mind is made up and it isnt for me to change that.

Post # 130
Member
3521 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2010

I can understand being bothered by costumes that are rooted in hatred, but some culturally-based costumes represent things that either no longer exist today in their original form, or have changed so much that no one in their right mind would stereotype an entire ethnic group based on the costume. I’m thinking mainly of the geisha costume–I can understand why someone MIGHT be bothered by it, but it’s not really logical to be offended (imo) because the immediate cultural meaning/relevance has changed. There are still geisha, but probably 99% of human beings are intelligent enough to know that there are very few women who choose this lifestyle and that it’s kind of an outdated stereotype. 

Blackface and the Muslim-with-a-bomb costumes–those are offensive, I agree, because they’re rooted in xenophobia and hatred. But I think we need to look at each instance as its own entity instead of trying to paint every case with the same brush. There are certainly degrees of appropriateness vs. inappropriateness.

I’m all for tolerance and understanding. Hyper-sensitivity and over-sanitation…not so much. But then, everything-everything-everything has the potential to offend SOMEONE. To each their own. 

ETA: KatyElle, I would love to join the moon excursion. 😀 I’ll bring cupcakes!

Post # 131
Member
215 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

I think it’s a little over the top.  My daughter (who is 5) dressed today as a Chinese girl. She IS a Chinese girl lol.   She wore the same outfit that she would wear at Chinese new year.  Chinese new year it’s celebrating culture, halloween it’s racism?  I think some times lines are crossed but dressing up as another ethnicity is not inherantly racist IMO

Post # 132
Member
143 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

@earrings: THIS! I know you’ve bowed out, but, thank you for being far more articulate than I (after typing and deleting multiple times). 

Post # 133
Member
664 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I think people keep missing the point. While I will not go into this never ending disscusion I do have to add that dressing up as a geisha is not the same as dressing up as a particular japanese figure in their culture. Nobody is saying you cannot take from other peoples cultures or dress up as someone from their culture it just depends on who you dress up as. Not just a general stereotype of a culture but notable people from their culture. 

I have to admit before this thread I never realized dressing up as a geisha would be offensive but I can completely see it now. If anyone dressed up as a Mexican with a big floppy hat, big mustache and poncho is offensive to me because it goes back to when Mexicans we’re called lazy stupid people. This is what ignorance leads to. People dressing up as something they have no idea what it means. If somebody decided to dress up as something with day of dead, I would not find that offensive at all because that is honoring our ancestors.

I really do not uderstand why people are getting so upset about this. If they are just “these kids from college,” not even giving them enough respect to consider them adults, then why does it bother you that they have this campaing going? Their just kids anyways, according to PP. 

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