I agree, but I also know that after you’ve offered those kind words people can choose to still appropriate and then you’re made to drag them through every little thing — because they expect you to do it. We shouldn’t use the ways in which we are oppressed to combat appropriation (note I said appropriation, and not the people who do it) but there’s also only so much you can take before you have to give a bitch the low-down of the situation.
Oh, I’m sorry, how wrong of us to call you out on being an insensitive, privileged ass-hat.
It’s a Tumblr blog with photographs of white people wearing warbonnets as the vast majority of content.
I think I speak for all of us when I say: “Iníla yaŋká. Shut the…
I’m trying not to get too much into this discussion because I’m not a native of anywhere, but so much of it has been popping up on my dash and I keep seeing comments regarding the matter. I find it extremely pathetic, sad, and frustrating how much cultural appropriation goes on (and I’m most familiar with Native American cultural appropriation), but I’m saddened and even more frustrated with the way it is being addressed at least by the tumblr community.
I know I know, I’m going to be crucified because I shouldn’t be allowed to speak about how to address cultural appropriation of a culture that isn’t mine. But, as an Arab American, I feel I know enough about ignorance and racism for my perspective to be valid (though I believe all perspectives are valid, the just might not all be right).
A lot of the comments I keep seeing are along the lines of “white privileged girl”. This, to me, is sad and equally as frustrating as the cultural appropriation. Labeling these cultural appropriators as “white” and “privileged” may be true, but they’re being used in accusatory ways. Yes, they might be white, but are they white because they chose their skin color? Did they make the decision to be born into a society that is privileged? They are products of the decisions the generations before them have made. Many of the people who are appropriating these cultures were not the people who ostracized, violated, and massacred the cultures they are appropriating. Their ancestors did, yes, but they did not. They are the product of ignorance, a self-perpetuating ignorance which we, those who are trying to eliminate that ignorance, are combating with harsh accusatory words and blaming them for their race and their privilege. Can we not use compassion, kindness, and good example to teach them and show them truth and light rather than using (justified) anger and attacking them with our sharp words and blaming them for their race?
I strongly feel that instead of condemning them for being white, and a part of the predominant culture that has historically been oppressive, we should be teaching them and setting a positive example for them. I don’t think that is so terribly out of the question.
FUCK being nice. Nice is not an appropriate way to deal with racism and colonialism, look how far it has gotten us. Also, by responding with honesty of your feelings, respect for yourself and your nation, displaying commitment to fighting for our continue survival, and sharing knowledge you are loving in the bell hooks way. Love is not synonymous with niceness. Our hearts are the size of our fists, so keep on fighting through love.
Fair enough, I do understand and agree that anger is valid. But my overall point is that these people should not be blamed for their race. We should not be accusing them for their skin tones, it’s hypocritical of us.
That’s still not sitting right with me. It’s not accusing them of their skin tones but calling them out on having white privilege. Also, it’s besides the point that they may have not participated in physical violence, they are still continuing the genocide of Indigenous peoples, as articulated by Ranya Green in Andrea Smith’s artcle Queer Theory and Native Studies:
“Ranya Green demostrates that the cultural appropriation of indigeneity is based on a logic of genocide: non-Native peoples imagine themseleves as the rightful inheritors of all that previously belonged to ‘vanished’ Indians, thus entitling them to ownership of this land. ‘The living performance of ‘playing Indian’ by non-Indian peoples depends upon the physical and psychological removal, even the death, of real Indians. In that sense, the performance, purportedly often done out of a stated and implicit love for Indians, is really the obverse of another well-known cultural phenomenon, ‘Indian hating,’ as most often expressed in another, deadly performance genre called ‘genocide.” After all, why would non-Native peoples need to play Indian if they though Indians were still alive and perfectly capable of being Indian themselves? (2010: 53-54)”
With that, I still see nothing wrong with the current methods of calling these “Indian”-performers out. In addition, we as Indigenous peoples are not obligated to be teachers, let alone be delicate about it. To be in the perpetual state of being a student and expecting colonized peoples to be your teacher is white privilege. What should happen in an ideal world, their asses would get called out and they would take some private time to google that shit, learn, reflect, process, then come back to join the discussion with us.
It’s not race blaming, it privilege calling out. It’s a radical stance, not a liberal stance. It’s refusing to work inside of the settler colonial logic of improving current conditions instead of changing things in order to decolonize our lives, bodies, communities, and nations.