View From The Voice: Don’t dress to offend next Halloween-Your favorite Disney costume may not be appropriate

-The Voice, Staff Writer

Even though the end of spooky season has come upon us, there’s something we need to be remembering when it comes to Halloween and what we decide to dress as. There has been a recent rise in costume controversy.

Recently, Megyn Kelly, who used to be NBC’s TV host, made some comments regarding people changing their skin to go with their costume.
She spoke specifically about a woman who dressed up like Diana Ross and made her skin darker, and how blackface used to be okay when she was a kid growing up. We hate to break this to you Megyn, but it never has been okay, and it never will be.

Many costumes have been getting criticized and being considered offensive. With the release of the Disney movie Moana two years ago, costumes of this character raised questions bringing a term “brownface” to surface. All costumes relating to Native Americans or cowboys are also now out of the question and will be considered offensive.

You can no longer dress up as Pocahontas since this crosses the line of a cultural stereotype. More recently, this Halloween season there was serious backlash about one man’s decision to dress up as Hitler.

He tried to defend himself by saying that his family enjoys dressing up as historical figures. It’s understandable if you wanted to dress as a historical figure that had a positive impact in the world. But when it’s someone clearly known for mass genocide and someone no one actually respects or deems a “historical figure,” it becomes a problem.

This raises the issue of cultural appropriation, which simply means taking things from another culture without permission. Halloween costumes are supposed to be fun and creative ways dress up like something else.

To avoid this we have to think how the other person and how someone’s culture would feel if you are dressing up like them and misrepresenting what they’ve had in their lives for centuries. People need to start putting themselves in others shoes to view how dressing inappropriately in someone’s culture beside your own is disrespectful.

We at The Voice believe that cultures are not characters and you have to be careful how you dress up in order to stop further confusion in our society over costume controversies.

Some might think Kelley’s comment was a simple observation of how times have changed, and that things that did not use to be offensive a few decades ago are offensive today.

The real truth is that these practices of appropriation have always been cruel and insensitive, and Kelley’s senseless comment just shows how ignorant people are of what is culturally accaptable and what isn’t.

 People deserve to have their culture respected, just how we would want someone to respect our ways of life.

Being careful of how you dress should always be an idea running in our minds. The realization of this is key to no longer raising controversy among Halloween costumes, which are meant to be a harmless tradition.

We at The Voice want everyone to have had a safe and fun Halloween, but culture appropriation is not the choice. There are plenty other ideas, even if they are extremely cliche.

Spice up a classic costume and make it your own. Do what you would feel comfortable in, and remember that everyone else will be seeing you in your costume.

We at The Voice think everyone, despite what culture is in your background, deserves to celebrate this holiday, but at least in an appropriate manner.

 

-The Voice