?

Log in

No account? Create an account
The white person's guide to being visibly racist - Piano wire. [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
The richest girl in town.

[ website | www.laurenwheeler.com ]
[ userinfo | livejournal userinfo ]
[ archive | journal archive ]

The white person's guide to being visibly racist [Tuesday, Sep. 14th, 2010|10:58 pm]
The richest girl in town.
http://community.livejournal.com/ontd_feminism/351570.html

The white American infatuation with Mexican stuff, if not Mexicans themselves, has been an object of fascination to me for a number of years, and I've become quite an expert. Most white people gravitate towards Dia de los Muertos stuff (kitschy! edgy! vaguely but not uncomfortably spiritual!). It's not exactly perplexing; white people love making vague statements about the wonderfulness of having a positive attitude towards death and so forth. Plus, skulls are cool. I'm assuming this is the reason why a Latino friend of mine was asked if he was going to participate in a "Dia de los Muertos Zombie Walk", logically scheduled to coordinate with Cinco de Mayo celebrations. He did not react well, suffice to say. Such a wet blanket.

Despite your best efforts, your earnest and totally misguided offensive appropriation can fade from memory with time. Luckily, there's a way around this. For generations, people have covered their flesh in stereotypical depictions of other human beings and their cultures, and it has yet to go out of vogue. A couple of sugar skulls on your upper arms will lend an exotic vibe to any WASP, and, what with the overwhelming current of xenophobia and racism in today's society, no actual Latin@ is likely to feel comfortable challenging you on it. If they do, make sure to tell them how much you loooooove their culture and it means sooooo much to you. They'll look like ungrateful meanyheads and will be forced to back off. If all else fails, ask them how they celebrated the last Day of the Dead. No doubt they'll say something boring about visiting the graves of their dead family members or something, whereas you made up your face like a Sylvia Ji painting, baked some authentic Mexican bread using authentic internet recipes, and built a shrine to Frida Kahlo. It's clear who the winner is.

Not feeling this Mexican stuff? Get a gypsy or geisha, or maybe an American Indian. Don't let anybody tell you this is offensive. After all, such designs have been used for years, and tattoos are all about your feelings, not about centuries of ongoing marginalization and genocide. It is your right as a privileged person to have cartoonish depictions of other human beings permanently marked on your body. Be sure to attach lots of meaning to your tattoos, because intent is everything, and criticism of your tattoos is nothing less than a personal attack. If all else fails, make a poorly reasoned argument about how the visibly tattooed also face discrimination in our society, and maybe say something about "my body, my choice!" They'll be dazzled by this irrefutable logic, especially if you get a bunch of your friends to say it too.

Good luck, friends. Remember, the kyriarchy is nothing without people like you.
linkReply

Comments:
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]From: pantryslut
2010-09-15 06:21 am (UTC)

(suddenly contemplating Wonder Bread tattoo)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: marialuminous
2010-09-15 06:46 am (UTC)
A classmate of mine in college had a bar code tattooed on the nape of her neck. That struck me as an inventive use of "our culture", capitalism. Not something I'd ever want to do, but at least it was creative and not appropriated!
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: ammonoid
2010-09-15 09:19 pm (UTC)
I dunno about the creative part, I've seen several barcode tattoos.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: marialuminous
2010-09-16 03:06 am (UTC)
It's the only one I've ever seen, but darn, you're probably right about it not being all that creative.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: elusis
2010-09-15 06:24 am (UTC)
It's time for that "oh snap" graphic again, isn't it?
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: erg
2010-09-15 07:17 am (UTC)
I think they should buy back the parts of mexico we bought from them in the 1800's.
Oh, no, wait, we took it from them by force. Hmm. I still say, they should buy it back.
(Reply) (Thread)
From: delux_vivens
2010-09-15 07:48 am (UTC)
I clicked. I saw the picture of those bellydancers. It. I. You.
(Reply) (Thread)
From: outlawpoet
2010-09-15 04:47 pm (UTC)
their website is worse. Why did I click!?
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
From: delux_vivens
2010-09-15 05:45 pm (UTC)
Did you watch their peformance piece "spirit birds"? It was stunning.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: tristan_crane
2010-09-15 05:39 pm (UTC)

oh ...

Yeah. Wow. Fail.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: fightingwords
2010-09-15 05:47 pm (UTC)
Bellydancers? I didn't see it....
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
From: delux_vivens
2010-09-15 05:49 pm (UTC)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: fightingwords
2010-09-15 05:50 pm (UTC)
*cries*
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
From: delux_vivens
2010-09-15 05:51 pm (UTC)
You really want to shed tears? Go to their website. Watch the video.

One of them is supposed to have California Native ancestry, which apparently makes this ok.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: sparklydevil
2010-09-15 06:14 pm (UTC)
AHHHHH.

WHY DID I? WHY?

And they're from right here in the Bay Area, too. Damn it.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: flipping_hades
2010-09-15 06:28 pm (UTC)
I really love how one of them got "wanderlust" to travel extensively through.....California, Oregon and Montana.


*headdesk*
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
From: outlawpoet
2010-09-15 07:28 pm (UTC)
there's a disturbing number of people who describe their desultory road trips through cities where they know people as 'walkabout', which is always pretty sad.

(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: flipping_hades
2010-09-15 06:26 pm (UTC)
My head exploded when I got that far.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: rivetpepsquad
2010-09-17 04:28 am (UTC)
WAAAAHHHHHAAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAAA!



Tangent: "sexy ethnic" = "sexthnic"

[I hate how my head does that to EVERYTHING.]


Another tangent: my awesome tattooist today was talking with her studio mates about gossip that they'd heard about some crazy white girl in the tattoo world that had taken over an existing studio, and was re-naming it...wait for it... "TWO-SPIRIT," a Navajo themed studio. *plonk*

We all groaned.

Edited at 2010-09-17 04:31 am (UTC)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: whataboutprom
2010-09-15 03:53 pm (UTC)
My friend actually asked me to get a matching sugar skull tattoo with her. I had to explain why that gave me a bad feeling and that I didn't think it was the best thing for us to get spiritual symbols that we don't fully understand from a marginalized culture. I think the tattoos can be quite beautiful, but it never sat right with me.

(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: reichmarshall
2010-09-16 06:31 pm (UTC)
The image in the userpic is going to be my next tattoo. You tell me, am I stepping on any cultures there?
(Reply) (Thread)