aquadevil asked: I would truly appreciate links to information about race relations and cultural appropriation because modern racism is incredibly complex and I often worry about being in the wrong. This is just my opinion, and I fully acknowledge that I may be very off base, but most people, actually sane, reject the blatant racism supposedly “of the past.” Instead, people seem to practice racism without active malice, sadly much harder for most to identify. This prejudice doesn’t seem to be rooted in hate, but ignorance of what’s offensive and general misunderstanding. I can see how a discussion about Colton’s choice could devolve - - “What do you mean that’s racist? It’s a silly costume!” “But it’s always wrong! He should know better!” - - and I hate the idea of dismissing ANYONE for a poor choice or sending hate their way. I understand that educating the masses is exhausting and the responsibility would all-too-often fall on the group facing “casual” discrimination, but in this instance, I would be really disappointed in Teen Wolf fandom if they can spare the time to pen Sterek dissertations, author petitions, vote in polls, protest unfair polls, message the creator, etc. but won’t pause to have a conversation about why a Halloween costume is problematic. If YOU don’t mind, please help. I need to learn.
The above ask came into my box in three parts; I’ve put them together and am answering it this way so that it’s complete. As always, if I get something wrong/do something problematic, I would hugely, hugely appreciate being told so that I can correct said error and apologize. I promise to offer nothing but thanks in return. <3
So, first and foremost: killsmedead put up a great post here full of links to the information you’re looking for. Among other things, that post will direct you to black-face.com, a fantastic site that gives a full run-down on the history behind blackface and why it’s wrong, and to this great article about cultural appropriation and costumes, and to this post explaining why Colton Haynes, specifically, is wrong (although, to be entirely accurate, I must acknowledge that that post was written in response to Colton’s LAST instance of using blackface, not in response to THIS incident of brownface). Additionally, you might want to check out Resist Racism’s Halloween post. If you’re looking for a broader educational experience, you might check out this post, which, in addition to linking to a number of articles about costumes and cultural appropriation specifically, can also direct you to information on such interesting topics as white privilege, ”reverse racism,” and, of course, shutting up and listening.
Of course, you could also type “racism resources” into Google. Or “cultural appropriation.” Or “why is blackface wrong.” It’s a magical thing, Google. The entire internet at the tips of your fingers! All kinds of ways to educate yourself! Isn’t technology awesome? (Speaking of ways technology is awesome, you should check out this post and, also, Jay Smooth’s completely brilliant TEDTalk in regard to the ignorance/misunderstanding/intent piece of the question you directed to me.)
Now, I would hope that the above links can assist you in the process of educating yourself on why what Colton Haynes did is wrong, and on some of these, as you mentioned, very complex issues. That said, I know that those links provide far more information, from a far more experienced place, than the random white lady on the internet you tasked with helping you to learn (hiya!) could ever hope to produce. Their voices are far more important than my voice on these topics, and they always will be. That is just How It Is, and I appreciate the opportunity to direct you (and hopefully others!) to them. The rest of this post will be dealing with the suggestion that it is the responsibility of anybody except you to educate you. It is, fair warning, a good bit harsher than the tone I usually strive towards striking, and is, as such, under the cut.