There’s always a sense of excitement around this time of year as Halloween is fast approaching, and what’s more important than selecting the perfect costume? Besides candy and scary movies, the tradition of costumes here in America is what Halloween is all about.
Unfortunately, for students at the University of Southern Indiana (USI), their costume selection choices may be a bit limited this year.
According to a report from The College Fix, USI hosted a cultural appropriation workshop titled “Culture not Costumes” where students were lectured on what is considered an appropriate Halloween costume in 2017’s era of political correctness. There, administrators defined cultural appropriation as “the taking of intellectual property, knowledge, and cultural expression from someone else’s culture without permission.”
The workshop, hosted by Housing and Residence Life, went on to provide examples of what cultural appropriation looks like “when it comes to first nations.” Examples included: hipsters wearing headdresses, dressing up as “Pocahotties” and “sexy Indian Princesses.” The event also included two videos about cultural appropriation and a handout, which had a short yes/no flowchart questionnaire to determine if a costume is a cultural appropriation.
According to the Fix, “The two videos about people dressing up in ‘inappropriate costumes’ included one on people donning Japanese prostitute costumes and a second on Native Americans. The words ‘very disrespectful’ came up, a lot.”
Presenters utilized a box of dress-up clothes for attendees to practice creating respectful costumes which included superheroes, ghosts, and cats.
However, the practice dress-up time, videos, and handouts may have fallen on deaf ears. Only ten students in total attended the event. One can only assume college students aren’t that interested in the policing of Halloween costumes. Universities are going all in for the idea of political correctness while forgetting one key component: just because you don’t agree with someone’s idea, doesn’t make that idea offensive or wrong.