“’Halloween as a holiday has a history of being focused on inversion of power,’ says professor Susan Scafidi of Fordham University. She is the author of Who Owns Culture: Appropriation and Authenticity in American Law. ‘It’s about turning the daily world on its head.’ People dress up as celebrities, cops, politicians, and other powerful figures, and it’s funny! But when you dress up as a culture that you are currently oppressing, or have subjugated in the past, you’re not inverting anything, you’re just kicking them when they are down — or, as Scafidi says, ‘reinforcing current power structures in an offensive way.’
What a bunch of horseshit. You know what Halloween is? It is a tradition of honoring the dead. When the dead come out to play, some are our long lost loved ones and some are evil spirits. We dress in scary costumes to trick the evil. We light pumpkins to scare away the evil. We consume food stuffs in honor of the beloved and in honor of the season. We play games and make merry in honor of the beloved and express gratitude for life. None of this is a subversion of power; it’s a melding of death and life – a celebration of that very liminality. People dress up as slutty Muppets and cops because the idea of the costume has evolved from merely being a trick on evil spirits to being a play at fantasy. It is just fantasy. There is no fucking power subversion.
Turning the world on its head is what we do for Carnival – that’s the subversion of power, and no one is calling Carnival racist/sexist/blah-ist, are they? Carnival, like the (horrible) movie The Purge, was the one day of year people were allowed to flirt with sin and go a little nuts. We wear masks during Carnival because it’s more comfortable to sin when doing it incognito. We wear masks during Halloween also to raise mayhem – but mostly to hide from the evil spirits. Professor Idiot is conflating the two holidays and making a bullshit argument.
By way of disclosure, I’ve never read her work. But I wouldn’t waste my time doing so based on this idiotic quote from her. My favorite part of the above-referenced article, by the way, is when the author, Alden Wicker writes: “but when you dress up as a culture that you are currently oppressing…” What joy! When I dressed as a gypsy when I was 6, I guess my child self was currently beating the living shit out of a Roma? When I was in my twenties, broke and busy, I worked at a Thai restaurant and used the skirt from the uniform as part of my Arabian Princess costume (also a no-no costume today). I must’ve been some kind of oppressive bastard to do such a thing. To my mind, it was “literary” – all 1001 Arabian Nights fantasy, or something. But according to the analysis of Professor Dumbass, I – personally – was oppressing ancient civilizations everywhere with my dastardly use of a gold skirt to make a fucking costume.
Are you offended when I dress as an Arabian Princess or a Gypsy? Yes? Then fuck you, you sensitive little cunt. But wait, it gets better! Some buttholes at MTV made a video about supposedly racist costumes, and said that whitey deserves to get hurt for wearing something possibly racist. ( By the way, I can’t even say the word ‘racist’ in my head without also singing to myself: “Albi, the racist dragon...” Thanks, Flight of the Conchords!)
Paul Joseph Watson describes the inanity of the video quite well:
“The video serves as a reminder that joyless progressives and social justice warriors are on a crusade to have absolutely everything imaginable – even down to kids’ Halloween costumes – deemed ‘racist’ or ‘offensive’ as part of their war on fun.” Watson also underscores the cringe-worthy hypocrisy of these jerks who put down whitey all day long but poor ole’ whitey can’t even dress his kid in a cowboy outfit without someone calling it offensive.
Other costumes you can’t wear include musicians, news headliners, and societal outliers. For example, you can’t dress as Nicki Minaj if you’re white. Well, I think that’s fucking racist. What little girl didn’t dress as Madonna in the 80s? I understand whitey shouldn’t wear black face for such a costume, but to say it’s insensitive to pad your ass to look the part is like saying you can be Dolly Parton but you can’t stuff your bra. Besides, Minaj puts her parts on display all year round; isn’t mimicking them, therefore an act of homage rather than racism?
And, you definitely can’t be funny. You cannot dress as "Sexy Cecil the lion" and "lion killer dentist”. Ha! I think that’s clever as hell, but according to CNN, it’s “insensitive.” Oh, really? Well, I tell you what - I will measure my sensitivity against the lion killer dentist and see who winds up on top.
This retard at Everyday Feminism says “Question why you are choosing to dress up as another culture, ethnicity, or race. What message are you sending?” The message I’m sending is that it’s fucking Halloween, bitch, and it’s just a costume. The message I’m sending is that the lion-killer is a dick anyway, so who cares if I hurt his feelings? The message I’m sending is that everyone should quit taking meaningless stuff so seriously. If you can’t handle an offensive costume, then you are sad and weak.
I don’t care one bit if someone dresses as a redneck, a goofy Canadian, Hillary Clinton, or who/whatever. I don’t like everything that people wear. I am VERY tired of girls dressing as a slutty everything for Halloween, but it’s not up to me how they want to “play” Halloween. I don’t like when people dress as vaginas, or when men wear a bra full of spices and say “I’m a spice rack, har de har har!” But, they’re just expressing simple-mindedness and having fun with their own retardation. I’m not about to tell them that they deserve to be killed in a car accident for dressing as a 6-foot pussy.
I also have mixed feelings about the costume involving Ray Rice and his fiancée, but I see that such costumes also serve a point. They remind of things that maybe we shouldn’t forget. They point out things that are rotten in our culture. By that, I do not mean that the costume wearer is the rotten thing – I mean that the disgusting thing the person is pointing out by means of costume is culturally important. It is almost as though, by making fun of something, we are making it less psychologically difficult. Learn to laugh, people. Learn to laugh.
The thing is, if we aren’t allowed to play and fantasize – and even have the right to be completely stupid once in a while, then our whole culture is going to implode. The more you say Don’t Wear, Don’t Do, Don’t Say, the more likely you are to get a severe backlash. So shut up about your “power inversion,” your “oppression,” your “racism is everywhere.” Drink a pumpkin martini and thank Cod that we have Halloween as a day to play, when adults can wear costumes and engage in a little anarchy. That’s what it’s all about.