Cultural Appropriation, Revisited

Cultural Appropriation, Revisited


[VOICEOVER:] This video is sponsored by Skillshare. [T1J]:The second most-viewed video on this
channel is a video I released 5 years ago called “WTF is Cultural Appropriation” A few years after release, I changed the title
to “SHOULD WHITE PEOPLE HAVE DREADLOCKS” in all caps because, you
know, clickbait. [PAST T1J:] What do you think about white
people with dreadlocks? Not even
kidding, I get asked that like twice a week. Now, for the longest time
I wondered why anyone thought I would give a shit what other people do
with their hair. And I really still don’t give a shit what
people do with their hair. But eventually I learned that a lot of these
people were actually asking me about this thing known
as Cultural Appropriation. [T1J:] Man I miss those wild jumpcuts. He says, as if he doesn’t still use jumpcuts. Hi, I’m T1J! [WEIRD VOICE:] Follow me! [T1J:] So that cultural appropriation video
from 2014 has always left me a little ambivalent. While I still agree with much of it, it’s
far too short to really expose much of the nuance
that’s usually necessary for complicated topics like this. Holy shit this video is less than 5 minutes
long! Those were the days. In that video, I largely dismiss most accusations
of cultural appropriation as confusing or silly, while
at the same time acknowledging that it is important for people
to be sensitive to the history of disadvantaged groups. But the main takeaway of that video I
would say, was the line I repeated several times,
[PAST T1J:] You’re allowed to like stuff. You’re allowed to like stuff. You’re allowed to like stuff. [T1J:] But of course, it’s more complicated
than that. My channel used to be basically just a place
where I vomited thoughts onto the internet with no real rhyme or reason
behind it, but these days I try to be a little more mindful about
what ideas I express and how I express them. Even if there’s something I fully believe,
I try to think about how the audience might perceive or interpret my argument. And it’s also fair to say that my views and
perspectives have evolved over time, as you would imagine. It is very important to me not to inspire
people towards mentalities that I find to be toxic or harmful. Even if I don’t intend to spread bad ideas,
I believe that being a responsible creator involves consideration
of how your ideas might be interpreted or misinterpreted. Especially, as a black dude, I don’t ever
want to be perceived as giving people permission to be racially insensitive. The best way I’ve come up with to prevent
that sort of thing besides avoiding certain topics outright – which I
do in some cases – is to provide contextualized arguments in anticipation
of these perceptions. And I definitely didn’t do that in 2014. So let’s try it now. And I know that there are hundreds and thousands
of videos and articles on this topic already, I just didn’t want that old
video to be my only contribution to this discussion. So deal with it. Probably the main issue with that video is
a lack of clarity about what is and isn’t cultural appropriation. Now, I absolutely despise debates that hinge
primarily on semantics, and I think that’s a big problem when we’re
talking about cultural appropriation. Different people think of different things
when they hear the word, and that’s always a problem in any type of
discussion; when people don’t even agree on what words mean. So for the purposes of this video, I’m going
try to define some terms, so we’re all on the same page. In your future conversations on this topic,
I encourage you to do the same. So the verb “appropriate” generally has a
negative connotation in English. It usually refers to taking or using something
without permission or to the exclusion of others. For example: “The legislature ‘appropriated’
the tax revenue for corporate subsidies.” Or
‘ Or, “My Sonic fanart has been ‘appropriated’
by a major brand for their clothing line.” ‘
So in this video, when we talk about “cultural appropriation,” we’re
using it to specifically mean something that is potentially (slowed down and exaggerated) problematic. But as I said in that video so many years
ago, “You’re allowed to like stuff.” So this implies that it’s possible to engage
with other cultures without being disrespectful. The most obvious example of this is what we
will call cultural exchange. A cultural exchange is when different aspects
of culture are shared between different groups through prolonged
interaction, often over the course of many decades. Cultural exchange is why we watch anime in
the West, and why they listen to hiphop in Japan. I think in my old video I hastily conflated
cultural exchange with cultural appropriation, which is why the complaint
seemed strange to me. And to be fair, a lot of people who were complaining
at the time made the same conflation. I definitely saw kids on Tumblr yelling at
people for wanting to learn Spanish. But there’s your lesson for today, don’t base
your political opinions on reactions to teenagers on social media. Isn’t that right Sir Applesauce? (horse neighs)
The difference between exchange and appropriation, is that exchange
generally happens mutually and on equal footing between cultures that
have interacted either personally or through shared media. Appropriation on the other hand is one sided,
and usually involves a dominant or privileged group taking things
from a disadvantaged culture. I should note that this is not to say that
mutual exchange can not happen between privileged and disadvantaged
groups. Because of the internet,for example, different
groups share slang, memes, fashion and all kinds of things all
the time. The problem with appropriation is when these
aspects of culture are stolen with no respect, credit, or benefit
given to the originators. When we watch or even make anime or things
inspired by anime in the West, we understand that it’s a Japanese thing,
and we give credit to them for creating it. When Marks & Spencer, a British retailer and
food seller, created a vegan wrap, and named it after a traditional
Indian dish called “biryani,” even though it did not resemble
the dish in any way, that seems to be more like callously exploiting
a foreign culture to increase the perceived value of your products. There are also cases where people adopt traditional
religious or cultural symbols that are considered sacred
or significant, just because they think it looks cool or for other
frivolous reasons. And again, it’s just disrespectful. Like, why be an asshole? A lot of white people lose their entire minds
if they see someone who isn’t a veteran wearing military badges or
uniforms. If you don’t believe me, just search Stolen
Valor on YouTube. It’s the same thing. But with Cultural Appropriation, it goes beyond
disrespect. Cultural appropriation can have the
effect of further contributing to marginalization. When dominant groups take from marginalized
cultures and gain or profit from that appropriation without giving
credit or sharing any benefits, it can reinforce that societal imbalance. White people, for example, are often perceived
as innovative, unique, or edgy when they borrow certain hairstyles
and fashion from other cultures,
meanwhile people from those groups face discrimination and
stereotypes for the exact same traits and behaviors. [GIULIANA RANCIC:] Like, I feel like she smells
like patchouli oil. [OFFSCREEN VOICE:] Or weed. [RANCIC:] Yeah, maybe weed? [T1J:] And I know this personally as a guy
who has missed out on several opportunities because my appearance was not
perceived as “professional” enough. It should also be mentioned that sometimes
people from disadvantaged groups adopt traits from the dominant group,
but this can generally be referred to as assimilation. Assimilation is usually performed as a survival
mechanism for non-dominant groups. While it’s true that a lot of black American
women enjoy the look of straightened hair, they also know that in
the back of their heads that it’s much harder to be perceived as presentable or professional
without it. Now, just like any other video, I don’t mean
to talk about this like it’s a black and white issue. It’s complicated. Everything is complicated! One of the things that makes this conversation
tricky is yet another related concept that we will call cultural
appreciation. Appreciation is when you participate in another
culture, but you do it in a way that is informed and respectful,
and often with the approval of people of that culture. A good example of this is if you were to marry
someone with a different heritage or religion than you and
you decide to have a wedding ceremony that includes customs and
iconography from outside of your own culture. Generally this is done in a respectful way
and with consent. The problem is that it is often difficult
or impossible for outside observers to tell the difference between cultural
appropriation and cultural appreciation. And for some people the distinction doesn’t
even seem to matter. But
as you might imagine I don’t personally advocate such a non-nuanced
point of view. Earlier in the video I shared an image of
supermodel Karli Kloss wearing a Native American war bonnet as example
of disrespectful cultural appropriation. But Brazilian designer Oskar Metsavaht did
something similar when creating a fashion line inspired
by the Ashaninka, an indigenous tribe in South America. The difference here is Metsavaht collaborated
with actual representatives of the community and even
paid royalties to the tribe. For some, this may still not be enough, but
to me this is a huge step up from wearing a war bonnet and an animal
print bikini just to be edgy. In my old video, which again was made in 2014,
when Miley Cyrus was still doing stuff like this, I argued that
Miley probably just likes hiphop and hiphop culture, which is fine. But just a couple years later it seems like
she decided to drop her association with the culture as if it were
a bad habit, which casts suspicion on her supposed appreciation, and
provides an example of borrowing from a culture, profiting from it
and then simply casting it aside. “23” is still a banger though, I don’t care
what anybody says. But apparently she’s doing hiphop again, so
I don’t fucking know man. Avril Lavigne encountered a lot of criticism
after releasing the video for her song “Hello Kitty,” for what people
thought were insensitive portrayals of Japanese culture. However, Lavigne shot that video in Japan
with the aid of a Japanese cast and crew including a Japanese director,
and the video and song was well received in Japan, by Japanese
people. In fact, it appears that the vast majority
of the people who were offended by the video were not themselves
Japanese. Which brings up
another important point. One of the reasons there is so much confusion
and controversy around the cultural appropriation issue is
that well-meaning white people have a bad habit
of getting offended on behalf of other groups,
often placing victimhood upon groups of people that have not claimed it for
themselves. I see this sort of ‘white-protector’ mentality
a lot as a black dude, and I personally find it very off putting. Being an ally to people of color does not
involve being a knight in shining armor and it certainly doesn’t involve
speaking on their behalf. And when you react to something without having
the actual cultural experience to really know whether or not it’s
actually a problem, that kind of thing makes it harder for people to take legitimate
complaints seriously. So just as I don’t intend to give people permission
to be racist, I also don’t endorse hopping on Instagram and starting a
fight every time you see a white person with cornrows. At the end of the day, I still don’t care
if white people have dreadlocks, and I’m not really interested
in attempting to mind-read in order to determine whether or not any individual
actually respects the culture they’re participating in. It’s also important to understand no culture
or group is a monolith, and you will get different opinions when you
ask different people. My opinion is that all I can do is ask people
to be thoughtful about how they engage with other cultures. You’re allowed to like stuff. But you should also think about how your
interaction with that stuff affects marginalized people. You should make sure you’re not perpetuating
a stereotype. You should
give credit, and if applicable, time and/or money, to the groups
you’re borrowing from. You should probably avoid accessorizing with
things that other groups find sacred, because that’s just kind of
a dick-move. And you should remember that people are more
than their fashion, music, or slang. They’re humans. They have issues and anxieties. Especially when we’re talking about humans
from disadvantaged cultures. To paraphrase a quote from Nicki Minaj, “If
you want to enjoy our culture and our lifestyle..then you should
also want to know what affects us, what is bothering us, what we
feel is unfair to us. You
shouldn’t not want to know that.” That’s what I should have added to that old
video. DAS JUS ME DOE. What do you think? Thanks for watching, and thanks to
Skillshare for sponsoring this video. Skillshare is an online learning community
for creators with more than 25,000 classes in design, business, music,
illustration and and much more. It’s the perfect place to improve your skills
or learn new ones, and with a premium membership, you get unlimited
access to the vast collection of high quality classes. Personally, I’ve been working on my writing,
so that I can take my video scripts to the next level, and make
even better content for you guys, so I checked out a creative nonfiction
class from the great essayist Roxane Gay. It was extremely valuable to me, I even typed
out a bunch of notes. And there’s so much more to explore. An annual subscription to Skillshare is less
than $10 a month, so it’s pretty affordable, but Skillshare has allowed
me to give 2 months free to the first 500 of you that step up to the
plate. To sign up, simply click the link in the description
below and the first 500 of you will get 2 months of unlimited
access to thousands of classes, for free. And remember, by supporting sponsors like
Skillshare you not only get access to a great service, but you also support
me and help me take my content to the next level. Thanks again to Skillshare, and thanks to
all of my patrons. Also big
shoutouts to everyone who sent me awesome shitty Sonic fanart. I couldn’t put them all in the main video,
but here they are in all their glory. Once again, I have a discord server if you’re
into that sort of thing, you can find the link in the description. But other than that I guess
I’ll see you all in the next video. Byee.

100 thoughts on “Cultural Appropriation, Revisited

  1. I always wanted cornrows (my profile pic is actually me) and a friend of mine told me that its not that Im white, its that Im white, like my skin would look too bright among all the hair.
    I still want cornrows.

  2. Finally, someone that talks and debates calmly, while also understanding and explaining nuances. Sub earned, homie.

  3. Pfffffff! This video is straight trash! It's a white oppressor awareness video hidden in political correctness. When the west "borrows" culture its appropriation, but when minorities "adopt" culture of a more dominant society its assimilation. ANOTHER CRAZY LEFTIST UNCONCOVERED FOLKS

  4. The Avril Lavigne thing was interesting – I found it a bit bizarre (speaking as a white Canadian) that she got the pushback she did considering how it’s been reported here how big her audience share comes from Japan. I remember watching the closing ceremonies for the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics and seeing how the Japanese athletes were specifically focused upon when they played Avril. Heck, I’m pretty sure the character of Epiphany in Y:The Last Man is a deliberate (but extremely loose) reference to Lavigne (a Canadian pop singer come ‘mob boss’ stranded in Tokyo after the male death plague)

  5. 6:30 this only applies to celebrities, if lower class white people wear dreadlocks, they will have a harder time finding a job aswell

  6. i really enjoyed the video and the thought out points brought up,
    however i would disagree by saying that the people getting angry on behalf of other cultures being "appropriated" is a white people thing, when in my experience the people getting angry on others behalf are most often american minorities or people who have newly come in to activism (who are most often minorities), i don't think its a race/culture thing to white knight on cultural appropriation and saying it is so would just perpetuate the mix up of appreciation and appropriation

    but i can only speak as a Scandinavian and my only experiences with this problem/debate is from the internet

  7. Can I ask what you think white people can do when they want to help prevent problematic cultural appropriation of e.g. POC cultures, when many of those POC have made clear their objection and opposition to that appropriation? I'm thinking of, as an example, white people wearing Native American war bonnets for fashion or costume, when this has consistently been opposed by Native American communities. Is is okay, in your view, to call out other white people for such disrespectful behaviour? It equally wouldn't feel right to leave it to those POC to raise that awareness and make those objections alone.

  8. my husband is Pakistani & whenever we go to visit his family they shower me with gifts, usually in the form the traditional Pakistani clothing. they love to see me wear it and participate in their culture when I am there & when I am home with my own family as well.

  9. so glad you're out here making vids.
    As a p much white person from a super white area, I didn't grow up with as much access to a variety of voices and definitely fell into that 'white knight' mentality that spoke over marginalized people when i was in high school.

  10. The reason why Marks and Spencer sells briyani wrap is to expand its offerings to its large Anglo-Indian customer base, and because everybody likes briyani. You really shouldn't be basing your political opinions on clickbait spam masquerading as real news. 'Cultural appropriation' is itself a toxic concept which denies the reality of the mixed origin of many cultural quirks. There is no need to dignify such a concept by distinguishing it from 'cultural appreciation' because both concepts ultimately perpetuate the same underlying myth of cultural or racial purity. Very often people who talk about cultural appropriation are ignorant about their own culture and history and are the worst offenders when it comes to making claims to other people's culture and erasing the complexity of an item's real and complicated history. For instance there was this big hoo-ha about a white woman appropriating chinese culture by wearing a cheongsam when in fact the cheongsam is a mix of western and Manchu elements. This begs the question of what legitimately counts as 'Chinese' either way, and very quickly dissolves into claims of ethno-nationalism which are too subtle for the average American teenager to understand. Very often the act of claiming cultural appropriation is cultural appropriation itself because it's usually one dominant or privileged group trying to steal or claim shared or common cultural elements for themselves.

  11. Think what you want about the Avril Lavigne thing. At least she can pronounce "kawaii." Looking at you, internet.

  12. Ok so honestly I don't think cultural exchange and appropriation are different appropriation implys sharing there is a very different word called expropriation that refers to people outright taking something to the disparity of the party taken from my whole problem with the concept of cultural appropriation is that most modern examples I've seen don't matter If it doesn't mean anything for a black person to wear dreads it should mean nothing for a white person the headdress is problematic but usually the place where the conversation of cultural appropriation goes isn't that it disrespects ritual or sacred icons but rather we don't want them using our stuff

  13. Whites invented a lot of culture and technology. I sure hope blacks and browns are appreciating and respecting our water sanitization and medicine.

  14. My personal opinion is that if you’re just appropriating aesthetics from a culture that’s not really a problem because it’s just fashion, so a white person can wear dreads (but it looks shitty on white people omg please stop it looks bad). BUT if you’re appropriating religious/ spiritual aspects then that’s fucked up. Don’t wear a chef’s hat if you aren’t native, don’t have Budas if you aren’t Budist, don’t wear a Star of David if you aren’t Jewish.

  15. There are 2 terms that works be defined as well. What is culture, and what is defined as a dominant and what is a disadvantage or marginalized group.
    And, are people immediately representatives of a culture because of their race or where they were born?
    For example, I'm Colombian, born and raised. Am I a representative of Colombian or Latin culture? How about a child of two Colombians born and raised in the US? Does that child share the same culture with me?

  16. There is no such thing as cultural appropriation. The idea is nonsensical. No one can own cultural artifacts.

    There is only cultural disrespect but someone simply using that artifact is not in and of itself is not disrespect.

    Also, there is such a double standard. Western cultures can be copied but stingy non-Westerners or non-Europeans hate the reverse.

  17. I live in Canada and have never seen a black person here with dreadlocks. Here it’s People from Quebec who hitchhike across the country every summer.

    If you see a white person here with dreadlocks you can bet that they speak French (and they might not know any English)

  18. First of all us native Americans had dreads first second of all it doesn’t mater that much if you wear dreads.

  19. Not disagreeing but I feel like dreadlocks specifically are not looked at as professional on white people either? Idk just a question. Like it seems like the white people who think dreadlocks smell bad or are unprofessional think that regardless of the race of the person who has the dreadlocks. Obviously it still stems from racism but I think as far as every day people go, dreadlocks wouldn't benefit the white people wearing them. As far as celebrities go then it would benefit them obviously.

  20. Mexican mario
    Mexicans: Yeah it looks so cool and it represents our culture
    White people: THIS SI SO RACIST OMG

  21. I think with celebrities like Miley Cyrus and other singers, we have to realize that they are just cold and calculated people but also typically academically uneducated people who just trying to drum up sales. I may get flack for saying this but over the years I've seen Miley Cyrus not just appropriate African-American culture but use the LGBTQ culture as a PR stunt. I say that because she once claimed to be a gender fluid person but never requested people to call her by they/them pronouns or explained her identity more. Yes she did come out as pansexual and she was very open and demonstrative of that but it seemed like once she decided to marry Liam Hemsworth, she was just being ultra feminine, she has a video out now about being a mother's daughter. It makes me wonder if she just said that once to sound cool. I'm bisexual myself and I know a lot about the LGBTQ community and have actually known both binary transgender people and non-binary transgender people. I understand that non-binary people can use a variety of personal pronouns that want people to use but the majority of them are very strict about people using gender neutral pronouns and language in reference to them and I didn't see Miley do that.

  22. Racist Elvis used some black style and was like 'look at how innovative white rock n roll is'. Then there was Rihanna wearing Asian clothes on the cover of an Asian language publication. So cultural misappropriation is somewhere on a spectrum.

  23. *Honestly one of the things I find most frustrating about the whole knight ally thing is that people forget that white people. can also have curly hair (even type 4). Black people can have straight hair. When they take such a black and white look at things like this, looking only at the big picture, they miss the details. Which is a terrible thing to do when the details are living people.

  24. why are we acting like white people are the only ones who care about respecting the military. Any race can join the military/ support it brehhhh

  25. 10:08
    Oh God, THIS.
    You know what I hate more than racists? White people trying to be the next White Knight in Shining Armour, ready to get offended on your behalf.
    Dude, if I were offended, I'd speak up. Did I say anything? No? Then shut up, your useless, loud whining does nothing except marginalizing me even more.

  26. Thank you for this video! Over the past few months, being a white woman, I realized how important it is to ALWAYS ask yourself: "do I do that myself?" before arguing. Constantly self-check. And also I learned how important it is to ask the marginalized group of choice first, before assuming they are offended, or assuming what exactly offends them. You put insanely well what's going on in my head at the moment, and you put things in order in such a logical way. Thank you!

  27. Yeah, I really like what you’re saying here.
    When it comes to white people wearing dreadlocks, I just think that since it’s what naturally happens to hair that isn’t brushed, I don’t think any culture can own it, yknow? Black people may have popularized it, but it’s not something that happens to only them

  28. Tbh I'm not really bothered about "cultural appropriation," i think it's good that people are celebrating others' cultures. DJMD

  29. I think using a culture as a cash cow without doing your homework. Culture can even be a coping mechanism for most marginalised groups so to snatch and throw away when cashed in can be taken personally. I don't know how I would feel if someone wore our Zulu beads, rename them, make money off of them and not give back to South Africa in any shape or form.

  30. As a hispanic l could care less what non hispanics do with our culture as long they don’t make us look bad or disrespect the culture

  31. Everytime a cultural appropriation discussion comes up I see the same comment; "The people in ___ don't even know what cultural appropriation is." Well, that is because within the native country, the culture in question is already dominant. Therefore it cannot be taken or used by another group in a way that would harm, diminish or marginalize the native's lives. Appropriation is something inflicted on an already oppressed group of people to the benefit of the appropriators. So, no, Japanese people living in Japan are not going to feel the upset of Japanese people living abroad when they see non-Japanese dressed as geisha for Halloween, all the while knowing they will be laughed out of their schools or work places for wearing ANY traditional, cultural attire.
    Just because it didn't rain in SoCal doesn't mean Hurricane Katrina didn't kill a WHOLE lot of people.
    (This articulate young man explained PRECISELY this concept. I don't know how it was still missed by some in the comments below.)

  32. Brutha.. . Thanks for exerting a mass of hot air, but truth be told, racists and other weirdos simply get a charge from using other folks sentimentalities as a sort of a weapon against them. In the words of Tay-Tay: Haters gonna hate! Umgawa.

  33. I think the most important part is being truly educated on whatever culture you bring into your life. Like for instance, I've been studying different aspects of Japanese culture my whole life, not just through anime. I've brought different aspects of it into my life, like eating with chopsticks to avoid binge eating because it's something i really struggle with. I've also been practicing Shinto for a long time, it makes me happy and less stressed. I've been studying Shinto for quite a while and believed in it, before i even knew there was a name for it. It was just my beliefs and when i learned Japanese people had very similar beliefs and ideas, it gave me a bigger love for Japanese culture. It's just a genuinely enjoyable thing and having parts of that culture in my life enriches it.

  34. The problem with appropriation is it’s a slippery slope of egotistical haters who never learned to share as kids. Nobody is being marginalized in America or Britain or Canada but in Iran you can bet if your black or gay you’re in trouble. If we are all humans, we should share culture and not feel entitled to it. It’s a jerk state of mind to begin with

  35. I 1000% agree with everything you said, but the Miley Cyrus thing, in the article she said she took a step back because hip hop has a tendency of being non-feminist which is true. Now look at her music! Hip hop but highly feminist. I think she loved it but wanted to be very careful of her morale while cleaning up from drugs

  36. Thank you for the cultural appreciation bit! I got in an argument with a non-Japanese coworker in Japan because she didn’t think it was acceptable for her to buy a yukata and wear it to the yukata matsuri (festival), even though she really wanted to buy one and wear it to the festival. EVERYONE there was going to be wearing one and are welcoming to you wearing one as well and participating in the matsuri. I was like “GIRL. It’s not👏appro 👏pri 👏a👏tion 👏! Wear the yukata!! Enjoy the yukata! Love the yukata!!!

  37. It’s okay to learn about another culture, it’s okay to travel, it’s okay to learn another language, it’s okay to educate yourself about the unique, different, beautiful cultures of this world. It’s NOT okay to pretend you’re a part of it when you aren’t (looking at you “transracial” people 🙄) and its NOT okay to mock other people (looking at you Washington R*dskins team) and dress up as a stereotype of them (looking at you Coachella people who wear headdresses bc they have no respect for Native Americans). To put it simply: don’t be an asshole.

  38. I was raised without a traditional ancestral ethnic culture to identify and act out as.. and my life is much more simple and happier, and I actually have the ability to think for myself and not get emotionally dragged into the worlds insanity…

  39. Well said. As you mentioned, black people are often discriminated against for job opportunities and at times disparaged for wearing our natural hair. The military just recently relented and said certain natural black hair styles were acceptable. Otherwise, black women were forced to were Eurocentric-type hair styles. California and New York are the only two states that have protections against this type of discrimination. So, when people like the Kardashians are told they look edgy and cute with Black hair style which enhances her brand, but then defends her racist makeup artist, it stings.

  40. The biggest problem with "cultural appropriation" is, who gets to decide? A bikini girl in a war bonnet is just tacky to me, not really offensive. It's pretty obvious she's not actually presenting herself as a native American war chief. It's just a dumb costume. And I don't buy the "stolen valor" or "sacred dress" arguments either because SJWs never lose their shit over all the "sexy nun" or "pedo priest" costumes you see on Halloween. Yet to serious Catholics, they'd find that offensive. I don't want to live in a world where anyone's offense trumps the freedoms of us all. I find conspicuous consumption offensive, should I have the right to tell you how to spend your spare cash? No, I just have to bitch about it at the water cooler. I find the whole "edgy neckbearded fedora atheist" trope to be a bad stereotype and offensive. Do you think the Southern Poverty Law Center will take up my case on that one?
    Here is another weird observation. I grew up in the 80s. My grandparents were part of the so-called "greatest generation". That generation was still pretty racist. I actually had an argument with my grandmother because she didn't want me dating black girls. Back then when a white guy started wearing dreadlocks or listening to rap, it was the old white people that lost their shit and the black folks LOVED it. Nowadays the old white folks might grumble a little bit about it, but largely don't care and it's now the black folks losing their shit over white people with dreads. The world has gone completely insane.

    No, this is not about "appropriation" at all. This is all this is part of a recent movement to socially punish whites for the crimes of their ancestors. I know no one will ever admit to this, but it is blatantly obvious, and is one of the most racist things I've seen in my 40-something years.

  41. as i am a Leftist who struggles to let go of some of my more centrist and/or "libertarian" opinions on things, i have for half my life rejected any form of traditionalism, and have always valued liberty over all unless an aspect of that liberty does more harm than good.

    i preface my comment with that because to this day, i struggle to accept that at an individual level, a person is capable of appropriating culture, at least in the way some resent. this is mainly due to a fundamental value difference between me and others who disagree with me.

    while i can at least sympathize and understand how turning certain elements that may be traditional to another culture, into a fashion statement, can be seen as offensive, but i do not believe that this is an overt offense, unless, and this is my inner Leftist speaking now, if the cultural element(s) are being used to sell something, or are commodified.

    so for instance, Katy Perry wearing a Kimono, this is a grey area, and i think because in a way she was doing a paid performance, i can reasonably see why some would have contention with this. as for the random high school girl wearing a Kimono dress for prom, this seems much more innocuous and less of a threat to anyone.

    and to be clear about my sort of centrist position on this stuff, i do not give any fucks if someone dresses up as some sort of military veteran, unless of course they are doing it to scam a restaurant or something to get discounts, then that is sort of shitty i guess, but i find it more funny if anything, lol.

    by the way, i love your hair, dude <3

    anyways, i do not like Miley Cyrus, moving on…

    i think this video was great, i believe we more or less have similar views on this, with some slight deviations otherwise. you have a good day, bro!

  42. The stolen valor example seems to resonate with people, I dont care about that either. So I dont know why I'd care about people using the culture of other people.

    I don't even think I care about doing things "respectfully". What is sacred to you is of no importance to me. Being told that I can't engage with a thing because other people like it a lot is itself a dick move to me.

  43. I would argue that most people who think their culture is being appropriated have no indication what being a part of that culture is like. For example, some black men and women will cite dreadlocks as being descendant from ancient nubian dynasty's and that they themselves are allowed to their hairstyle because of their loosely related ethnicity. This is cultural appropriation. Wearing a hairstyle that had significance to a people and culture that they could not possibly understand or share with considering it's so far in the past and no longer exists. The Rastafarian movement, however, is another thing many people cite, but if you have no indication as to what it was to be part of that culture and community, are you culturally appropriating their hairstyle?

    What I'm trying to say the whole thing is stupid and you should be able to style your body in whatever way you want without fear of stupid repercussions. Culture is constantly changing, adapting, and adopting so it's stupid to get hung up on whether or not it's offensive to a culture you know nothing about.

  44. Most people,at least,in North America use many aspects of other cultures because cultures are mixed together here however that native garb by supermodels is cultural approbation and is insulting because it was supposed to degenerate natives as sex objects only and laughable.Most of what a large number of people do isn't that deep somebody you admire does something so you do the same thing be it hair style, clothing or how you talk or walk.It isn't cultural approbation if Yo-Yo Ma plays a cello,better than anyone else,because he loves that music and was born into it.In the same way , if you're a white boy being brought up in a largely black community you would naturally act as a member of that community .That is a lot different than blackening your face putting on a dreadlocks wig and going to the party as a Rastafarian, which is very disrespectful,the same disrespect that model in the imitation native garb was doing.Is the whole world wearing a t-shirt and blue jeans cultural approbation by the rest of the world from rural North America?I don't think it is .

  45. honestly though, when blakc or asian people have blond hair, straight hair and so on, they are also seen as cool and edgy. I agree, claiming a culture as your own is wrong, but if you like wearing certain clothes, hairstyles ect, no one should care. Actually this problem is only a real thing in American which should be a melting pot of cultures. I never heard it used in Europe, or Asia. No one seems to have problems with that there.

    Sure, claiming to be native american when you are not is wrong, wearing signs of honour from any culture that you did not earn is wrong, not crediting cultures is wrong, BUT wearing normal clothes from a different cultures, eating their food, sharing their hairstyle is fine. Most people around the world are happy to see their culture (even if not correctly) represented. Seems only US leftist freak out about it and it's most often not even their own culture.

  46. I feel bad for blacks and whites. They're so blinded by hate and history that it makes living in the US a chore for everyone. They don't understand something fundamental to the world: you don't own behavior and you damn sure can't control it. Thought slavery and China made that abundantly clear.

  47. I used to get irritated about the Red Skins, and the Chiefs among other odd adoptions of cultural imagry. I eventually realized something. Individuality is more important than the group. The reason for that is that the group is more often than not stupid even if it includes smart people in that group. And cultures are an amorphous thing that don't really belong to anybody. Culture changes so rapidly that even those who start it are treating it as fashion. Quite often if a cultural artifact persists it persists by means of a hegemonic demand by authority either for a group to remain insular, or to establish a counterproductive us vs. them mentality. I reject these kinds of authorities on principle because they are not much different than an exploitative corporation as the culture is a means to an end, and less of an organic development of the individuals within that culture.

  48. I think the whole "white people can't wear dreads because black people get fired because of it" is dumb because that's not the fault of white people wearing dreads, that's the fault of the employer being racist. If anything, white people wearing dreads helps make dreads more mainstream.

  49. Should have watched this a week ago when I was writting on the topic. Young is a great author, for anyone who is also ressearching.
    Still, great video bro.

  50. Culture approciations , meaning white people can't use or make money with other ethnic groups ideas. Well football, baseball, basketball were invented by white people. So that must mean lebron James and other people of color can't get rich playing basketball. Odell Beckham jr and other people of color can't get rich playing football . I guess you get the point. All people of color can't drive 18 wheelers transportation any more being that is white culture. White people invented the automobile so only white people can have automobiles and cell phones. Ofcourse a black man invented trafic light. We just have to go back using stop signs. White people invented air conditioning so only whites can have air conditioning in their homes. Liberals have a messed up sense of humor. NASCAR was forced to have diversity programs to get people of color involved in the all white racing sport. So now whites can't use ideas from other cultures. Well you do without our culture I just mentioned and you can stick your corn rows and tacos up your ass.

  51. Dreadlocks is a weird one. Don't all people get dreadlocks eventually if they stop combing? How can a natural thing belong to one culture or another?

  52. Focusing specifically on dreadlocks though, or anything we might do with our own bodies, isn't it a little unfair to effectively try to culturally copyright something you can do with yourself? Can we be certain that dreadlocks were 'stolen' by white people? Even if most white people now (or any other ethnicity) are inspired to wear dreadlocks from African-descended peoples who is to say that this is where the style originated from. Even if it did, whose to say it wasn't forgotten over time then rediscovered by people centuries later that had never encountered anyone of African descent? I feel that culture, much like art, is never truly original. In fact I take issue with anyone that tries to claim any aspect of culture is 'our thing'. Most cultures have been cross-pollinated so many times over at this point that to claim anything is original is to misunderstand the nature of history. We alter our understanding of history all the time because new discoveries often supplant what we previously claimed as 'fact'.

  53. OK I don't know if you do read comments or not, but here is a story why I think your videos are often very North America centric. I don't know if this is the best video to comment on it. It doesn't mean I don't like your videos, but it is something maybe I could bring to the table. Well you often comment on white people being dominant, which is arguably true especially in the US, but lets travel to the region of Scandinavia and North Eastern Europe. We go back in history a bit and Estonia, Lithuania, Finland and Latvia used to be part of the Swedish empire. Swedes dominated these people and if you wanted to be anyone you would have to learn Swedish. Then there was a war https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russo-Swedish_War_(1788%E2%80%931790) which Sweden lost and all these areas were lost to Russia. Russia became the dominant cultural force, and while rest of Europe was practising colonialism in Africa and Asia , well these countries were Russias colonies. It wasn't until the fall of Russian Empire and when USSR was born that these countries became independent. Sweden remained independent and also became richer than these other countries. Then came WW2 and all but Finland was absorbed into the USSR. Finland was dirt poor still in the 1950s and lot of people moved to Sweden for work https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sweden_Finns#targetText=Most%20of%20them%20came%20to,20%25%20remained%20after%20the%20war.&targetText=In%202015%2C%20Finnish%20immigrants%20to,%2C%20however%2C%20were%20Finnish%20speakers.
    There was a lot of racism towards the Finns and there is still a bit of racism in Sweden towards Finnish people. What do I mean a lot, well systematic racism. They moved into suburbs which were really not so nice. There is a movie about it https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beyond_(2010_film) although the book is better. This was very much institutional racism whites on whites. Good example of the racism still going around https://youtu.be/ajtW-DrV-ps?t=234
    Well years went by and Finland cached up with Sweden financially and the racism got a lot less. However now Estonia which had been under Soviet rule was poor. Estonians speak a very similar language to Finland, and look pretty much the same (as do most swedes). However Estonia got its independence as USSR fell apart, and there was a lot of people from Estonia coming to Finland for work. Guess what they were treated also with racism in Finland (people had learnt nothing from the past). You would hear that Estonians are untrustworthy or lazy etc. Exact same arguments that been used against the Finnish migrants some 20-30 years prior.
    What was my point? Well now of course there are new migrants who are from North Africa and Middle East (guess what they are getting the same treatment). But the fact is that when you talk about white dominance, you can't apply it to the rest of the world. In Europe there is a lot of things like this going on, I guess 'White to white' racism. I lived in the UK and Bulgarians or Romanians were given this kind of treatment to the native people, even Indian people who have lived in the UK for many generations have joined to take part in hating Eastern Europeans. You don't see this too much in London for example which is very multicultural, but yes you go outside and our friends got yelled at "F#@#$ Polish" even though they were from Finland. https://www.politico.eu/article/romania-immigrant-workers-london-uk-new-working-class/

    This is why I think these things are not easily translated to around the world, maybe you've never even meant to say that.

  54. So when black women bleach their skin or dye their hair blond or glue in blonde hair that's cultural appropriation,? Am I correct because they're trying to look white

  55. i'd just like to say that some of the people getting mad at Lavgine's Hello Kitty song were Asian Americans (myself included). Of course people in Japan don't care what she does, but to Asian Americans it seems very offensive as when we celebrate our culture in the U.S. it's seen as "weird/exotic".

  56. Very happy to have found your channel. The Spouse and I were discussing "Appropriation" recently, and your perspective eloquently informs the subject. Well spoken.

  57. Every culture has always adopted the best bits from other cultures. Chicken Tikka Masala is the UK’s national dish courtesy of Indian immigration. Australia is a coffee obsessed nation courtesy its Post War Italian immigration. Fashion and art is influenced by global forces. Where do you draw the line here without it getting absolutely ridiculous? Is every white person eating Indian food being disrespectful of Indians? Is every artist influenced by another culture and borrowing from it being disrespectful of that culture…or just being inspired by it? This Cultural Appropriation nonsense is complete B.S. and people need to start getting offended about REAL sh1t that’s going down in this world, not a white guy with dreadlocks. People need to get a f#<king grip! For sure, be respectful of the culture you are being influenced by, but PLEASE don’t be afraid to be influenced by the best of other cultures for fear of “offending” some dick who is likely triggered by everything. The world will be the poorer if you do.

  58. Yes!!! To me it is so frustrating when (white) people get offended on behalf of me or my people, it is so frustrating.

  59. So is a black person straightening/dying/cutting their hair and a white person braiding or dreading their hair cultural exchange then?

  60. The notion of cultural appropriation is dumb, those who bark on about it dont even realise the culture the use to do so is not theirs, since everything from food, language, social norms, creations and innovations are all expressions of a culture lol, just too stupid for words the whole thing. Oh and dreads and braids, not 'black' as any historian or anthropologist of human history will tell you, a culture no longer doing it doesn't mean those that still do 'own' it, it's the folly of the ignorant in almost every CA debate

  61. lol how is it cultural appropriation though europeans had dreadlocks for thousands of years, long before jamaicans stole it in 1930

  62. What a beautiful video. You should get more into teaching. I've taken tips from this video for a lecture of mine. Very helpful.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *