Debate and Discussion

Blackface and other halloween costumes of the type
Queen Simia at 2:00PM, Nov. 18, 2009
(online)
posts: 11
joined: 9-10-2009
Orin J Master
it's very possible for young people to be completely ignorant. on ANY topic. we live in an age where you google things instead of learning it, so they're all retarded.

(geez, i DO sound like i'm 80 online)

These are college kids, not tweens. The fact that the article in question pointed out that several partygoers at the same event made it a point to dress in costumes mocking other racial stereotypes doesn't seem to indicate good clean innocent fun was going on.

They're kids who believe they're being cute and subversive by going against the norm of acceptance, which is amazing considering doing the opposite would've been shocking thirty years ago. But now that they're being called out, the “we're not actually making fun of them, it's just Halloween, lighten up, broseph” excuse is being rolled out.

I'd rather not see us devolve back into chest-thumping imperialist primates. Embracing past practices that derived amusement from subjugating another people, even if “just in fun,” is a slip backward.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:57PM
Orin J Master at 7:19PM, Nov. 18, 2009
(online)
posts: 437
joined: 12-16-2007
Queen Simia
Orin J Master
it's very possible for young people to be completely ignorant. on ANY topic. we live in an age where you google things instead of learning it, so they're all retarded.

(geez, i DO sound like i'm 80 online)

These are college kids, not tweens. The fact that the article in question pointed out that several partygoers at the same event made it a point to dress in costumes mocking other racial stereotypes doesn't seem to indicate good clean innocent fun was going on.

They're kids who believe they're being cute and subversive by going against the norm of acceptance, which is amazing considering doing the opposite would've been shocking thirty years ago. But now that they're being called out, the “we're not actually making fun of them, it's just Halloween, lighten up, broseph” excuse is being rolled out.

I'd rather not see us devolve back into chest-thumping imperialist primates. Embracing past practices that derived amusement from subjugating another people, even if “just in fun,” is a slip backward.

that's still them being ignorant. did you think stupid meant they're not making things worse?

it's a group that thinks not understanding what's wrong with things makes it okay. it's pretty much always been like that, and it's probably for the best to simply ignore them. that way, they never succeed in life.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:22PM
El Cid at 8:15PM, Nov. 18, 2009
(online)
posts: 947
joined: 5-4-2009
I’d have to weigh in with the “so what?” crowd on this one. Sorry, but (A) it’s pretty obvious that she was impersonating a specific celebrity, not trying to do some derogatory depiction of black people in general, and (B ) it seems unlikely her intent was to offend, and clearly from some of the other photos there were black people at the party who took no offense (and, as a side note, I find it hard to believe that someone who works with the Dallas Cowboys football franchise would make it too far if she had “issues” with black people). She did it for a party, not for a bunch of nosey forum goons to pass judgment over. Nothing worth making a big stink over, and nothing she needs to apologize for.

Now that kid in the other set of pictures, “Bob Marley”… he might need his ass kicked…
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
Product Placement at 11:51PM, Nov. 18, 2009
(online)
posts: 7,078
joined: 10-18-2007
Really guys. Aren't we taking this thing a bit too far? It's Halloween. Nobody thinks that it's racist to vampires when people go dressed up like Dracula (although I suppose they might if he was covered in sparkles lol!).

Yes, yes, I know. Vampires are mythical beings and therefore it's not quite the same. But my point is that the examples provided are people parodying specific person or a group of people and technically it's the same thing. If a Caucasian can't dress up as a person from different ethnicity then you're saying that everyone, who's playing dress up, can't move beyond their cultural status.

Is it racist for Asians to cosplay like a white character?
Is it unpatriotic if an American dresses up like a Frenchman?
If I (who isn't an American) dressed up like a redneck (a specific group of people in America) am I being biased to that country?

I don't know if the intention behind these costumes was malicious or not but I certainly would not have thought it that way, if I were designing an outfit like that.
Those were my two cents.
If you have any other questions, please deposit a quarter.
This space for rent.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
bravo1102 at 6:30AM, Nov. 19, 2009
(online)
posts: 3,228
joined: 1-21-2008
Product Placement
Really guys. Aren't we taking this thing a bit too far? It's Halloween. Nobody thinks that it's racist to vampires when people go dressed up like Dracula (although I suppose they might if he was covered in sparkles lol!).

Is it racist for Asians to cosplay like a white character?
Is it unpatriotic if an American dresses up like a Frenchman?
If I (who isn't an American) dressed up like a redneck (a specific group of people in America) am I being biased to that country?

I don't know if the intention behind these costumes was malicious or not but I certainly would not have thought it that way, if I were designing an outfit like that.

I do know a Rumanians and a Hungarian who were offended by someone dressing up as Vlad Tepes. How about a crazed Icelandic Berserkr wearing a bearskin and waving around a battleaxe screaming at the top of his lungs and biting his shield?

Saw that one too. His name was Orvaarg.

Then there was the guy in authentic Waffen SS camouflage who went to a Halloween party in the frat next to the B'nai B'rith.

There are a few that are offensive as opposed to being in bad taste like these black face ones were. If the person had done the MInstrel musician I showed or Little Black Sambo, that would have been racist.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:33AM
ozoneocean at 8:02AM, Nov. 19, 2009
(online)
posts: 24,800
joined: 1-2-2006
El Cid
it seems unlikely her intent was to offend,
Irrelevant in terms of racialism, whether those pics were or not.
In fact I'm sure most slave owners in the 18th and 19th centuries had no intention what so ever of “offending” their slaves by whatever they said, did , or thought. That would've been like worrying about offending your car, table lamp, or cutlery…

That didn't make them nice lovely people though did it?
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:35PM
Product Placement at 8:23AM, Nov. 19, 2009
(online)
posts: 7,078
joined: 10-18-2007
bravo1102
How about a crazed Icelandic Berserkr wearing a bearskin and waving around a battleaxe screaming at the top of his lungs and biting his shield?

Saw that one too. His name was Orvaarg.
Was that the name of the person or the character he was portraying?
I wouldn't give a rats ass about people dressing up as Vikings. What right do I have to deny them that? All I ask is that they stop using those dumb horned helmets. Seriously man, horns on your helmet is among the most impractical things to have as a defense. Helmets were designed so that sword/axe blow would glance off the head. Adding a horn to the damn thing would counter that, helping the wielder to penetrate the helmet.
Those were my two cents.
If you have any other questions, please deposit a quarter.
This space for rent.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
ozoneocean at 8:58AM, Nov. 19, 2009
(online)
posts: 24,800
joined: 1-2-2006
Product Placement
I wouldn't give a rats ass about people dressing up as Vikings.
Yeah, that doesn't really have the same history as slavery in the U.S. so it wasn't the best example.
Product Placement
Helmets were designed so that sword/axe blow would glance off the head. Adding a horn to the damn thing would counter that, helping the wielder to penetrate the helmet.
Sort of… Horns on the side would stop the blade glancing onto your shoulder and cutting you in half done the centre.

Really though, it would catch the blade and either force your helmet to be jammed into the side of your face or flip it off your head.
But, I've seen ancient bronze horned helmets from pre-Viking settlements in Scandinavia. -probably ceremonial rather than practical. Still, it means there is some truth to the myth afterall.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:35PM
Product Placement at 7:13PM, Nov. 19, 2009
(online)
posts: 7,078
joined: 10-18-2007
ozoneocean
Product Placement
Helmets were designed so that sword/axe blow would glance off the head. Adding a horn to the damn thing would counter that, helping the wielder to penetrate the helmet.
Sort of… Horns on the side would stop the blade glancing onto your shoulder and cutting you in half done the centre.
That's what shoulder guards are for. Keep on glancing.
ozoneocean
Really though, it would catch the blade and either force your helmet to be jammed into the side of your face or flip it off your head.
True, that's more likely. And lets not forget the other crap that the horns could snag on. Forget trying to fight in a forest. You'd snap your neck the moment you ran past a tree.
ozoneocean
But, I've seen ancient bronze horned helmets from pre-Viking settlements in Scandinavia. -probably ceremonial rather than practical. Still, it means there is some truth to the myth afterall.
If it was a ceremonial helmet, then it's likely. People put all kinds of crazy things on their head when they were pretending to look important during festivities. Where did you see that anyways?

Edit: on second thought, don't answer that. I don't want to derail the topic any furter.
Those were my two cents.
If you have any other questions, please deposit a quarter.
This space for rent.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
rokulily at 11:39AM, Nov. 20, 2009
(online)
posts: 1,109
joined: 2-26-2008
many cultures wore horned helm, like the mycenaens. but they were more to make a point of ‘i’m fierce and important' then a helpful killing thing.

also i've always thought of racism as the act of suppression leading to the offense of the suppressed. it isn't just that you offend someone to be racism, since some people are always more offend able then others, but the idea that you are purposely suppressing another person or persons even if you are unaware of your own action of doing so (oh oblivious people and their greed). you don't need to know the laws to commit a crime, unfortunately.

also, some college kids ARE just stupid. just because you’re in college doesn't make a person smart or very knowledgeable. it just means you're paying to ‘play’ and perfecting a previous learned skilled, like talking or craming. Few in comparison really learn anything on purpose in a different area of study. classic favoritism.

so are those kids racist? well, i don't really know those people well enough to make that call. the girl is just dressing up as a person not a race but that other kid, well, i wouldn't call it as much a racism as seriously retarded, maybe both. it's a horrible costume, is that suppose to be a person or just insulting? was he going for a cheap costume or a cheap laugh? either way it just kinda sucks
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:09PM
El Cid at 4:50AM, Nov. 22, 2009
(online)
posts: 947
joined: 5-4-2009
ozoneocean
El Cid
it seems unlikely her intent was to offend,
Irrelevant in terms of racialism, whether those pics were or not.
In fact I'm sure most slave owners in the 18th and 19th centuries had no intention what so ever of “offending” their slaves by whatever they said, did , or thought. That would've been like worrying about offending your car, table lamp, or cutlery…

That didn't make them nice lovely people though did it?
While I agree with what you’re saying about slavery and that some people who practiced it may not have been racists, I don’t see where it has anything to do with what we’re talking about here. Slavery and a fashion faux pas are two very different things. I remember in another thread you were lamenting about how people only use the term “political correctness” pejoratively, and you’re pretty much demonstrating exactly why that is here. If someone commits some harmless snafu and doesn’t intend to offend anyone, and the people who purportedly should be offended take no offense, then that should be the end of it. Otherwise what you’re doing is just stirring it up for your own personal reasons, stepping in and saying “Well, you black folks don’t know good enough that you should be offended, so I’ll be offended on your behalf.” It’s ridiculous and serves no useful purpose.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
ozoneocean at 5:08AM, Nov. 22, 2009
(online)
posts: 24,800
joined: 1-2-2006
El Cid
While I agree with what you’re saying about slavery and that some people who practiced it may not have been racists
What? lol!

No. To be a racist and practice racist ways has nothing to do with weather you want to offend people or not. It never has. Never, ever ever.

Ever.

I can't really stress that enough.

Look, put simply it's really like this; first comes the idea of different races. If you believe in that fantasy, you're automatically , technically, a racist. That's what the term originally meant.
That's the technical side of it.
What we're really talking about is “racialism”, which is not only the belief in the myth of “race” but also seeing your own “race” as better than others.

Believing in your own “racial” superiority is what makes someone a racist, or racialist. :)

Now the guff you're talking about here is what I mentioned when I first came into this thread:

“Is it just me or do people love to post stuff about black people saying things aren't racist.

It's like ”Hey! Lookit THIS!!!!! *dodgy image, racial taunt, story about discrimination etc* But it's OK ‘cause Lookit THIS!!!! *black person saying there’s nothing wrong here* What do YOU think?“
-implication being that if you disagree with what the quoted the black person says you're an over-sensitive cretin who is too Politically Correct.”
And as I also said earlier, in this instance Skulbie said that was not precisely the case because the quoted person was apparently a Russian, but the principal remains the same- people use threads like this only as an excuse to dilute the whole idea that anything could be racialist. The whole thing gets turned into a “political correctness gorn made” strawman burning festival.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:35PM
Faliat at 5:26AM, Nov. 22, 2009
(online)
posts: 582
joined: 10-17-2006
It's funny how everybody says “You're dressing up as a different ethnicity for Halloween! It's WRONG!” while at the same time these people complain about the school play at Christmas not being a nativity. Which if you remember is set in Bethlehem and all of the human cast are Semitic Peoples.

Call that jumped up metal rod a knife?
Watch mine go straight through a kevlar table, and if it dunt do the same to a certain gaixan's skull in my immediate vicinity after, I GET A F*****G REFUND! BUKKO, AH?!

- Rekkiy (NerveWire)
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:25PM
ozoneocean at 6:25AM, Nov. 22, 2009
(online)
posts: 24,800
joined: 1-2-2006
Faliat
It's funny how everybody says “You're dressing up as a different ethnicity for Halloween! It's WRONG!”
It's funny how everybody is not saying that but most people in the thread are still assuming that they are.
Faliat
while at the same time these people complain about the school play at Christmas not being a nativity. Which if you remember is set in Bethlehem and all of the human cast are Semitic Peoples.
And that has nothing to do with the issue. -_-

OK… try and explain…
There are certain historical reasons why dressing up as a dark skinned person and acting as if you are a moron is particularly offensive. It has a whole lot of bagge, it's stupid to pretend otherwise.
In addition, dressing up as any ethic group in order to portray them in a derogatory light is always problematic- Benny Hill with big buck teeth, slanty eyes and a pointy cane hat saying “Me sirry Chinaman. Me no know Engrish velly good!” has some issues, even when clearly meant in harmless fun.
There's no getting around that.

Weather these images are a case of that, you'd have to talk to the people involved and those at the events.

The purpose of this thread though and most people coming to comment is mainly to attack the political correctness strawman with blunted bayonets of noobish fury.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:35PM
seventy2 at 10:07AM, Nov. 22, 2009
(online)
posts: 3,953
joined: 11-15-2007
i think you are way off base ozone. if i dress up in baggy pants, a shirt that goes to my knees, and wear a bandanna and go around saying “yo yo yo” it's no more racist than someone else jumping into overalls with no shirt, stubbly facial hair and a beer going “hey ya'll watch thus”

I believe that by saying “that's racist” you draw attention away from the real situation. regardless of what it is. This was halloween, with someone having fun being little wayne for a night. and some stupid college student being stupid.

i've known black people to wear klan robes on halloween. does that make them racist?
facara
Running Anew an exercise blog.
I'm gonna love you till the money comes, half of it's gonna be mine someday.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:30PM
ozoneocean at 9:49PM, Nov. 22, 2009
(online)
posts: 24,800
joined: 1-2-2006
seventy2
I believe that by saying “that's racist” you draw attention away from the real situation. regardless of what it is. This was halloween, with someone having fun being little wayne for a night. and some stupid college student being stupid.
seventy2, if you are going to reply to my post, please read it properly first.

I'd like to draw your attention to this part:
Weather these images are a case of that, you'd have to talk to the people involved and those at the events.

You're imagining that I'm saying those images in this thread are “racist”.
In fact I have not said that in any of my posts in this entire thread.

I've talked about what racism and racialism is, I've talked about when dressing up as an ethnic minority is problematic, and the fact that the real purpose of this thread is not to talk about racism but to attack the idea of political correctness, which you have also just done. Congratulations! :)
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:35PM
El Cid at 7:02PM, Nov. 23, 2009
(online)
posts: 947
joined: 5-4-2009
seventy2
…it's no more racist than someone else jumping into overalls with no shirt, stubbly facial hair and a beer going “hey ya'll watch thus”
LOL! That's one of the greatest phrases ever invented by man, along with its cousin phrase “Hold my beer and check this out!” Loosely translated, it means: “Go ahead and call the ambulance now!”
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
Pineapple at 3:27PM, Nov. 25, 2009
(online)
posts: 276
joined: 4-21-2008
Product Placement
Really guys. Aren't we taking this thing a bit too far? It's Halloween. Nobody thinks that it's racist to vampires when people go dressed up like Dracula (although I suppose they might if he was covered in sparkles lol!).


Check out the guy in the second photo, with the face blurred out. Don't you think he looks a bit like Edward from Twilight? And even how he's leaning over the girl's neck?

Anyway: I think Ozone hit on a very good point. Dressing with a black face is very different then, say, dressing as an Asian school girl. That's because the icon of the black face has a lot of history behind it, a very painful history, and that should be respected. Getting dressed up as a black rapper, since its such a cultural icon, and doesn't have that historical baggage, is more acceptable.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:43PM
Faliat at 6:57AM, Nov. 28, 2009
(online)
posts: 582
joined: 10-17-2006
So you're basically okay to dress up in what is colloquially termed “yellowface” DESPITE Chinese railroad labour and the Japanese American Internment?

I've seen it done in movies. Are you tying to tell me that these ain't at least a little bit racist?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GWXYjOyf0zU
Rob Schnider.


Eddie Murphy, also making domestic abuse a basis for comedy.

Couldn't they find any Chinese or Japanese actors for the roles? Or maybe those they went to turned them down because they read the script?

Call that jumped up metal rod a knife?
Watch mine go straight through a kevlar table, and if it dunt do the same to a certain gaixan's skull in my immediate vicinity after, I GET A F*****G REFUND! BUKKO, AH?!

- Rekkiy (NerveWire)
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:25PM
Ironscarf at 10:03AM, Nov. 28, 2009
(online)
posts: 1,054
joined: 9-9-2008
Here in London, people don't go out dressed like that on Halloween: there are quicker and easier ways to die, like throwing yourself under a tube train.
As sure as I believe there's a heaven above, Ozone,
I know there's something much more,
Something even non-believers can believe in.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:02PM
El Cid at 8:19PM, Nov. 30, 2009
(online)
posts: 947
joined: 5-4-2009
Pineapple
Anyway: I think Ozone hit on a very good point. Dressing with a black face is very different then, say, dressing as an Asian school girl. That's because the icon of the black face has a lot of history behind it, a very painful history, and that should be respected.
It’s not so much a point as it is a restatement of the obvious, given that it’s the common knowledge which forms the underpinning of this entire discussion. Everyone is aware of what blackface is and its history. That’s why any of this was ever made into a big deal to begin with. The question at hand is not a matter of whether the outfits may conjure up bogeymen from our histories, but a more subjective question of just how much weight and consideration that deserves. Personally, I don’t think it deserves all that much. We’re not the same society that created those ghoulish caricatures anymore. Hell, we’ve got a black President for Chrissakes! I find it comforting that we’ve come to a point now when these things are far enough behind us that we can make light of them.

As a side thought, it’s worth asking just who exactly is being made fun of here? Given how far black people have come in American society, the old Sambo caricatures and whatnot are such a clear break from our day-to-day reality that it would seem more a bad reflection on the bigoted white world which gave birth to them than the people upon whom these depictions were originally projected. Maybe that’s why so many black people look at this type of thing and just shrug it away. They’re not burdened with “white guilt.”
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
El Cid at 8:23PM, Nov. 30, 2009
(online)
posts: 947
joined: 5-4-2009
Faliat
So you're basically okay to dress up in what is colloquially termed “yellowface” DESPITE Chinese railroad labour and the Japanese American Internment?
??? What does any of that have to do with anything? Seriously.

Faliat
I've seen it done in movies. Are you tying to tell me that these ain't at least a little bit racist?
I could see where some people might get that impression. Personally to me it's just juvenile and done in bad taste, like when they make fun of a nerd with the stereotypical big glasses and bad posture, or make fun of fat people or whatever else. I don't think Eddie Murphy was trying to assert his racial superiority over Asians; he's just trying to get cheap laughs (and failing. That movie was a real stinker!)
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
Faliat at 4:42PM, Dec. 1, 2009
(online)
posts: 582
joined: 10-17-2006
El Cid
Faliat
So you're basically okay to dress up in what is colloquially termed “yellowface” DESPITE Chinese railroad labour and the Japanese American Internment?
??? What does any of that have to do with anything? Seriously.

Why? Because those incidents are ALSO bogeymen from America's past. Not as well known to everybody, but still a scar on it's tanned and blonde visage with pearly white teeth.

And why not? Since in the latter a lot of American citizens (Over HALF of those interned) got locked up in what was basically concentration camps in their own country just because their parents, grandparents or just one of their parents was Japanese.
Basically, the Americans were doing to the Japanese and Japanese Americans what the Germans were doing to the Jews, Russians, Blacks, Disabled, Gays, Roma and anyone else helping them minus gassing them all.(I hate refering to it just being the Jews that were killed. It's almost ignoring the fact that everybody else didn't exist in there.)

Call that jumped up metal rod a knife?
Watch mine go straight through a kevlar table, and if it dunt do the same to a certain gaixan's skull in my immediate vicinity after, I GET A F*****G REFUND! BUKKO, AH?!

- Rekkiy (NerveWire)
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:25PM
ozoneocean at 9:40PM, Dec. 1, 2009
(online)
posts: 24,800
joined: 1-2-2006
Faliat
El Cid
Faliat
So you're basically okay to dress up in what is colloquially termed “yellowface” DESPITE Chinese railroad labour and the Japanese American Internment?
??? What does any of that have to do with anything? Seriously.

Why? Because those incidents are ALSO bogeymen from America's past. Not as well known to everybody, but still a scar on it's tanned and blonde visage with pearly white teeth.

And why not? Since in the latter a lot of American citizens (Over HALF of those interned) got locked up in what was basically concentration camps in their own country just because their parents, grandparents or just one of their parents was Japanese.
Basically, the Americans were doing to the Japanese and Japanese Americans what the Germans were doing to the Jews, Russians, Blacks, Disabled, Gays, Roma and anyone else helping them minus gassing them all.(I hate refering to it just being the Jews that were killed. It's almost ignoring the fact that everybody else didn't exist in there.)

Ok, I'll preface my post here by saying it has nothing to do with SKull's original post.

-What you're talking about is not related. “Blackface” was a real, widespread, widely identified entertainment phenomenon from the late 19th century on into the mid 20th century. The history is problematic and very complicated. One of the ideas at the centre was that it was “funny” to portray African people as childish, mentally deficient buffoons, basically parodying and stigmatising an entire ethnicity in an institutional way that was “acceptable”. That was "acceptable BECAUSE of slavery had robbed them of their status as full human beings- ie. Blackface wasn't bad because of slavery, slavery just helped to make that sort of dehumanisation for entertainment possible. And so “blackface” helped in same ways to maintain that lower status for black people.


Even then it was not all entirely negative, nothing is ever black and white, but mostly we're better off without it.

Because of that, your example of “yellowface” or anything else people want to bring up is just NOT the same thing. -Even if it can be sort of similar in some minor respects.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:35PM

Forgot Password
©2011 WOWIO, Inc. All Rights Reserved