Give a social justice warrior enough time, and they will find a way to take a harmless pleasure in life, like taking pictures of delicious food, and turn it into a racist microaggression fueling white supremacy. They’re very wrong.
Alex Orlov wrote in Mic on Monday that Instagram posts of ethnic food could be considered a racist microaggression.
“When photographers or food stylists use props to style ethnic food without doing their research, they might portray a cuisine incorrectly,” food and travel photographer Celeste Noche said in the Mic article.
An example laid out is a picture by chef Andrew Zimmern who posted a picture of Filipino short ribs.
“At first glance, this seems okay, except Filipinos traditionally eat with spoons and forks or just their hands. So it feels like he’s incorrectly generalizing all Asians,” Noche said to Mic.
Another example is when pictures are taken of chopsticks placed inside bowls vertically, which is considered rude and symbolic of death.
“Incorrect and offensive food styling is part of the larger issue of misrepresentation in food media, Noche said. She believes that when editors, stylists or bloggers change the defining characteristics of a dish, they ‘perpetuate cultural erasure.'”
As an Italian-American, this writer finds Orlov and Noche’s testimony as utter and complete garbage. I personally find 95 percent of the “Italian” food made outside the tristate area to be disgusting. It’s sinful. When people tell me that they “made noodles with Ragu,” I want to have them testify in front of the U.N. for crimes against humanity.
Similarly, major pizza franchises produce nothing short of a tomato sauce in a bread bowl saturated in cheese. Nothing close to what Italians recognize as pizza, which, once again, is fine.
Nonetheless, I don’t judge their actions based on intention. Jarred sauce like Ragu is perfectly acceptable to some people as is living in blind ignorance to what real Italian food should look and taste like. And that’s fine.
The weight of their actions doesn’t weigh on my shoulders. It doesn’t affect my life so greatly that people perform an abortion on my cultural heritage because I’m an American and some people screwed up in the melting pot. Every intention isn’t race, every thing done differently is not a microaggression, and pictures of food on Instagram are wonderful.