The use of blackface and wearing costumes of cultural wear happens year-round, especially during Halloween when people inappropriately defer culture as a costume.
From TV shows to movies, white people are wearing blackface. While some people claim blackface is a situation of the past, it still exists in shows such as The Office, 30 Rock, and SNL and movies like She’s Gotta Have It and Tropic Thunder. While the Black Lives Matter movement this summer pushed actors and actresses to apologize for wearing blackface it continues to happen.
Although movies and TV shows are one of the main places blackface and cultural appropriation occurs, Halloween is the time of the year it happens all over America. With kids dressing up as people outside of their race, and adults dressing up and making fun of cultures through their costume, Halloween is a time of year when many people are offended.
Some examples of costumes putting down a culture or race include:
- Dressing up as a “pimp” with the use of blackface
- Wearing a Vietnamese ao dai
- Dressing up as Pocahontas by wearing a Native American headdress
- Wearing a sombrero and calling yourself a Mexican
Using cultural dress as a costume is offensive and takes away from their traditional significance. By wearing it in a way to mock a person and culture is hurtful and pushes negative stereotypes.
If you have to ask if something is blackface or offensive to a culture, it is.