I once had a friend of mine (white person) ask me if it would bother me if they showed up to a party in some brown paint to complete their ensemble for a black character they loved and wanted to be for Halloween. I asked them why couldn’t they just be the character without the offensive, extra detail. That was the end of the conversation.
I think now of how I would portray a character like Tony Stark the Iron Man, one of the main Marvel Super Heroes that I loved and adored as a kid. I would get my mustache right, grow a junior ‘fro and then carry around a glass of liquor while wearing a glowing arc-reactor under my shirt. No time during my imagination of myself as Stark do I picture myself in the mirror with some makeup, going white to complete the transformation. Thinking about it, I would look awful as this faux white person and the fact that I was in white face would completely draw the attention away from my kickass mustache and cool arc reactor replica. My costume would have failed!
It makes me wonder why people go that extra (offensive) mile only to look terrible as the person that they are portraying. Think about it, when was the last time you saw some black face, brown face, yellow face, red face or white face that looked natural or even remotely good when it was someone of a completely different shade doing it?
I’m gonna go ahead and wait… hmm I think I can only remember the only time blackface worked a tiny, tiny bit (no I’m not talking about C. Thomas Howell as Soul Man)…
Please don’t try this at home people, Robert Downey Jr. is a professional… and the black costar made it okay… well sorta okay, right? Moving on…
It looks like crap when people do blackface, not to mention that other little thing… you know… the fact that for numerous decades the painting of white skin to appear black was done to hurt and demean people? Yes, it is pretty much a visual version of the word nigger O_O whaaaaaat!? You’re saying that people who dress as Tyreese from The Walking Dead and paint themselves brown are sort of doing the equivalent of running around yelling out “nigger” at the top of their lungs? Yes, why yes I am.
Over-Exposure Is Losing The Battle
On the other end of the blackface debate are the passive-aggressive social media hounds who literally bust a nut whenever they see the one dumbass who shows up at a party DRESSED… AS… A… RACE… INSTEAD… OF… A… PERSON… OR… THING.
It’s like “oh my god, oh my god, oh my god, Instagram dat bish!” Next thing you know there are people asking who it is; the blackfacer gets bombed on her social media spaces; smaller black blogs run the story; Huffington Post or some other monster-sized website leeches the story because, well… it’s now viral, and ignorant person is suddenly writing an apology letter before deleting all of her e-profiles in order to avoid hate mail and ColorOFChange.org. The next day, same shit different person, while all the while the rest of us are looking in from the sidelines, feeling disappointed in humanity and getting bored.
Why can’t we handle our tiny, insignificant, accidental racists one on one and save the blast furnace for celebrities who–let’s face it–should know better? Instead of hearing about politicians saying they would happily bring slavery back, I’m hearing about Susan in Wyoming who had a private nigger party with her friends. MAN F…D…B…Why do I need to hear about her dumb ass? We are unintentionally desensitizing ourselves with the exposure and before long it’s going to be so overblown that blackface will just be like “ya, who cares” even to black people that know their history. Imagine that.
It almost feels as if there is a whole sect of actual racist people out there saying, “you know what mang? Dem libs are trying to censor everythang, so I’m gonna go to this girl’s Africa party in my Klan sheet just to watch dem coons lose their shit like they do about everything else!” Next thing you know, they go to the party and BOOM! They get 5 worthless minutes of e-fame…
That’s some free press for people who could care less about being “put on blast” outside of their agenda to spread the pain… which we all help make happen.
Can we put away the AK’s and the SK’s and go back to using the Bop Gun? Heavy hits on actual racists and out of control cops do a lot more good than tweeting the latest blackface fail pic that your buddy snapped at a house party. We’ve had our fill. This happening just about every Halloween, it’s a wonder that we don’t just expect it.
As for those of you who are truly ignorant to the offense, COME ON FOLKS it isn’t rocket science. The rule is simple: You don’t cosplay or dress-up as another person’s race or culture unless you yourself are of it. Why is that so damn hard to grasp? Is there not enough ghosts, ghouls, goblins, and video game characters to emulate?
We all need a time out and I am begging you to refocus so that we can bring attention to the real problems that are going on.See some words or phrases that you don't understand? Check out The Dragon's Lexicon.