Cultural Appropriation

October 31 is fast approaching, and there are many people out there still figuring out what they want to be for Halloween this year. They are hitting up every store for different costume ideas and getting their inspiration online from their favorite stars. While Halloween is a great time to express yourself and be who you want to be, you have to be careful to not insult anyone with your costume.

Some costumes in the past may have seemed ok, but now we have to realize that times have changed. As a society, we are now way more aware of what is offensive to ethnic and cultural groups and what isn't. However, there are still costume outlets that are still selling these kinds of costumes.

20 Most Offensive Halloween Costumes of All Time! www.youtube.com

Halloween is about not being yourself for one day of the year, and while you are free to be whatever you want to be, do it in good taste.

For example, if you want to be a Disney princess that does not share a skin color with you, go for it, but don't wear blackface or anything like that. If you decide to be Tiana and you decided to put a black face on with your princess costume, that is not cool.

At one university, some students were reported as offensive for dressing as the "Three Blind Mice." Make sure you never pretend to have a disability for the sake of a costume.

It is actually illegal to dress up as a member of the military. We all have seen the videos of real veterans confronting those that are faking military service for the perks. This is called stolen valor, and it does mock the military. Don't forget that many veterans develop mental and physical disabilities and post-traumatic stress disorder as well, so by dressing up as a member of the military, you are mocking their service and the sacrifices they made for this country.

Also, Helen Keller seems to be a popular costume choice. Yes, she is an iconic person, but I feel like sometimes people dress like her because they feel like it is funny to mock people with disabilities. Don't reduce Helen to her disability by pretending to be her for a day, but rather take the time to recognize her for her accomplishments.

You can always have fun on Halloween, but just be careful that you don't make someone feel bad because it is everyone's Halloween and everyone deserves to feel safe and included.

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