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Shazam April 9th, 2016 12:46am

Yesterday I asked a Q about another country appropriating one of our cultural symbols (the flag) for their own use. 82% felt that Americans should have a prob with this. Do you get why cultural appropriation is viewed negatively by minorities?

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evoecon nearest binary system
04/09/16 5:26 pm

Much a do about nothing. My experience has most people upset when you force them to abandon elements of their culture, not when you adopt elements of theirs.

Highlander1 Iowa
04/09/16 9:14 am

That's not cultural appropriation, that's nationalism. Some people happen to be patriotic.

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Highlander1 Iowa
04/09/16 9:14 am

I know it's a rare thing these days but it's still possible.

Shazam Scaramouche, OH
04/09/16 9:22 am

Nationalism and patriotism are not the same. Patriotism is complex, but one of its key aspects is pride in one's own nation, including ethnic, cultural, political or historical aspects. Copying the flag because it looks nice would absolutely be an example of CA.

Highlander1 Iowa
04/09/16 9:29 am

In that thinking everything could be considered cultural appropriation. The reason people were not ok with it was not because of CA, it's because that would just be plain dumb if somone had an exact copy of our flag. This is a poor analogy to CA.

ozzy
04/09/16 5:47 am

White youths have been acting and dressing like blacks for at least the last ten years, and now they are upset??? Ever heard of a wigger?

FacePalm That Trick Never Works
04/09/16 12:11 am

this was not a good example for me because I do not see the Flag as a significant part of our culture. It is more like a brand or trademark. It is used as identification as a nation to those "outside". For me it is not personal.

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cyanospool The Deep North
04/08/16 11:47 pm

Well cultural appropriation is more than just emulating a cultures symbols. It's repurposing those symbols in a way that either dismisses, mocks or treats the culture like a novelty. But to a degree I think the analogy was still useful.

nib
04/08/16 9:38 pm

So now we MUST be ethnocentric. I can't keep up with your silly "progressive" rules.

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Rosebud Ohio
04/08/16 9:07 pm

Nice comparison.

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Zod Above Pugetropolis
04/08/16 7:34 pm

Not at all. But then, I couldn't care less if another country wants to copy the flag either.

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voc I am...what I am
04/08/16 7:00 pm

I don't see the flag as a cultural thing. It's a symbol.

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voc I am...what I am
04/08/16 7:01 pm

So no, I don't get why cultural appropriation is bad. I think people who think that are too sensitive

cyanospool The Deep North
04/08/16 11:52 pm

Mostly people just have an issue with appropriation that treats another culture like a joke or a novelty. Not just simply copying it out of genuine interest.

ADLK1996 New York
04/08/16 6:59 pm

I saw it more as a "There's already that flag things will get confusing especially during the Olympics and other international competitions"

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Shazam Scaramouche, OH
04/08/16 5:53 pm

I thought the comments in my flag poll were for the most part very well thought out, and the majority of folks would have a significant issue with another land simply copying our flag....I agree with them. A culture is made up of a bunch of elements. Stealing them is never ok. Hope this helps those who see no issue with CA to see it in a new light!

/s

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voc I am...what I am
04/08/16 9:31 pm

Shaz, I really don't understand. So if a white man wears dreads, a black person should be upset? Or if a white person learns karate, Asians should be upset? Or if a black girl straightens her hair and turns it blonde, white people should be upset?

cognocity
04/08/16 10:24 pm

"The thing is white people can't be upset because reverse racism isn't real!"

Shazam Scaramouche, OH
04/08/16 10:28 pm

VOC - I went into a ton of detail on a poll from ritter97 on this topic. I did my damned best to explain why it's wrong. Go check it out and what I had to say, and tell me if it makes sense to you?

cyanospool The Deep North
04/09/16 12:06 am

I think there's a fundamental misunderstanding of this topic on both sides here. To sort of reiterate my above comments, most people don't care if you emulate something their culture as long you're respecful. Having dreads is one thing. Having dreads purely to try and "look black" as some kind of joke or fashion statement is rude.

PartyJustin R.O.C.K. in the R.O.C.
04/09/16 7:40 am

Shaz, I read your conversation on the other poll, and I agree with you in spirit. But where it gets sticky for me is who judges whether someone is being an "originator" or a "copier"? For example I've seen people try to legitimately argue that white girls learning to belly dance is cultural appropriation and wrong, while others (of the same cultural background and heritage) say it's perfectly fine.

It seems that a lot of where you draw the line is dependent on whether the appropriation is already accepted by society, like using chopsticks vs dressing as a monk. I don't personally think that's the best differentiator, as everything has to start somewhere. Who's to say that in a hundred years a lot of people aren't dressing like monks and it's seen as normal?

I agree there are lines, but it's a bit personal and there's no easy way to define them.

voc I am...what I am
04/09/16 8:23 am

I agree with americanwolf and partyjustin. I guess to me it's just silly to get upset over something (in my opinion) that is so trivial. Life is waaaaayyyyy to short. I recently watched a video (and maybe this is what inspired Ritter) where a white man with dreads was aggressively confronted by a black woman because she said he was stealing from her culture. He was an aspiring dj (much like dr Dre or any of the other original black dj's one could argue is a culture). Should he cut his hair and quit djing because he's appropriating her culture? Where do we draw the line? This whole thing is seriously ridiculous.

voc I am...what I am
04/09/16 8:25 am

By the way, I LOVE how we are discussing this without name calling and other forms of butthurtedness which I've been seeing way too much of on this app. Thanks to all!

Shazam Scaramouche, OH
04/09/16 8:58 am

For me at least the distinction (again IP example) isn't so much copier/originator as it is copier vs fan/adopter. That makes it more complex of course. Just like most things when it comes to minority oppression. An extreme example: two white women from NYC begin dressing as Geisha. One does so out of a great love of Japanese culture developed over time. The other because she thinks the robes and make up is edgy and cool. To a Japanese American, both may appear to have stolen a piece of their culture. One has, one has not. The dred lock example above may be similar - although TBH I'd have a problem with it. I believe (haven't read up on which came first), that dreds are a symbol of holy men in India, and Rasta holy men adopted the dress also to signify holiness in their church. If I'm right, it would kinda be like a DJ wearing a priest collar. Lots of folks would find that unacceptable right?

voc I am...what I am
04/09/16 9:33 am

So if that's the case, black people shouldn't wear dreds (that's how you spell it?)

Shazam Scaramouche, OH
04/09/16 10:26 am

Not what I said. I said it depends on the motivation. Should people wear a priest collar? If they're priests or clergy from a dif denom yes. If they are not, it is exceptionally disrespectful to wear it just as a fashion statement. Same with Japanese men suddenly wearing Scottish kilts in Japan b/c they think they're neat.

voc I am...what I am
04/09/16 10:45 am

Then I'm still confused. Sorry. Maybe this is where the anger comes from, miscommunication, misunderstanding, and confusion. I don't think of a priest as a cultural thing. Religion isn't a culture, I don't think. So if someone was wearing a priest collar, it wouldn't be cultural appropriation. I don't even know if it would be offensive since the only way to know if they're a priest is to ask them.

PartyJustin R.O.C.K. in the R.O.C.
04/09/16 11:03 am

Shaz, I think we're just shades away from agreement. In your example of the white women dressing as geisha, I can appreciate the difference, but the problem is who can really tell why either one of them is doing it? You could always ask, I suppose, but that's not what's happening in our society. People are making broad judgements against those they think are appropriating culture without at all trying to understand why they're doing it. People are also making claims that any cultural appropriation is wrong without really defining why it is without making assumptions on the reasons someone would be appropriating it in the first place. (I hope that last sentence makes sense)

Shazam Scaramouche, OH
04/09/16 11:13 am

VOC - religion can be an exceptionally important to shared culture - Northern Ireland, Shia countries, etc. it's just an example though, so try not to get so hung up on that. I gave several others in my Ritter97 posts. I'll give another. Let's say a new trend starts in country western bars. A new song hits and in the video, the singer has a bunch of white guys and girls line dancing a Native American Rain Dance. It takes off and becomes the new Macarena. The dancers clearly aren't doing this sacred dance out of respect or honoring the specific Native American culture it originated from. Instead, they're doing it because they think it's cool, hip, etc. which would be incredibly demeaning to the culture it came for, and what that dance represents to them.

Shazam Scaramouche, OH
04/09/16 11:20 am

PARTY - I agree, but I also don't think it would be that incredibly hard to distinguish. Take the Rain Dance example above, the Geisha, the Priest, if it smacks of simply stealing elements from another culture for affect and not out of adoption or paying respect or something like that....it's the cheap knockoff product in my IP analogy. I don't think it needs to be over complicated. Instead, if a person from a minority culture raises a red flag, maybe we could just pause for and consider whether they have a point instead of routinely dismissing as being "too sensitive."

voc I am...what I am
04/09/16 11:49 am

They also aren't doing it out of disrespect. Also it would be a fantastic opportunity for native Americans to explain what that dance is all about. What you see as disrespect I see as opportunity.