With Halloween weekend upon us, students are making plans to either spend the time gorging on sour straws or donning a loan cloth for a costume party. For those heading out for a bit of ghoul-y fun, costumes are the biggest part. Obviously.
While most overlook the repercussions, culturally problematic costumes should be present in mind when out shopping for that “perfect” costume. From culture appropriation to just flat out racist Halloween attire, people need to think before they make that big purchase.
In some way or another, everyone partakes in cultural appropriation. We borrow clothes and ideas from other cultures without noticing. Which is fine. It’s ok to be ignorant to connotations that some costumes may have, but you’re an adult, you should have some knowledge of how and why costumes could be deemed “bad”.
From people donning do-rags and slapping multiple coats of bronzer on themselves to appear “darker” to doing half-assed attempts at Spanish accents while wearing the ever-stereotypical sombrero, there are obvious lines that should not be crossed.
Nationwide, there have been more and more cases of students stupidly wearing “blackface.” It’s like clockwork. No matter how much flack people get for doing it, every year there’s always a new crop of people doing it.
While you may receive a show of approval for your Halloween costumes from your friends, some costumes can still be culturally insensitive to others. There will always be a costume that offends someone but when it comes to Halloween, many take it too far.
You should try to be wittier rather than lowering yourself to dressing up as a racist stereotype. Try harder. Seriously.
When you choose how you dress yourself on Halloween night, keep in mind how it may affect other people. It may not be worth it if it’s hurtful to an entire segment of society.
So as you’re scrounging around for a last minute costume, think before you purchase.