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The death of Halloween is coming

The world is pretty on edge at the moment. Between all the madness in America that has stemmed from the election of Donald Trump to the ISIS terrorist attacks that seems to be no-where close to ending. There is a new scandal in the papers relating to a celebrity and it seems everyone (rightly or wrongly) has something to be offended by.

Today being Halloween, its all about cultural appropriation and why your absolutely not allowed to dress your kids or yourself up as anything other than what falls into your gender/race/culture.

With so many triggers and ways to offend, it seems like the end of Halloween is on the horizon.

Image from Amazon
A fellow parent blogger from the States has decided that the latest Disney Princess, Moana, is the newest no-no for kids to dress up as. She feels that dressing up as the Polynesian Princess is wrong because she is based on "real history and a real group of people". The issue came when her daughter wanted to dress up as Elsa this year and Moana next year but she felt that there were race issues related to this.

There is one thing I don’t like about the character of Elsa. I feel like because Elsa is a White princess, and we see so many white princesses, her character sends the message that you have to be a certain way to be “beautiful” or to be a 'princess. That you have to have white skin, long, blonde hair, and blue eyes. And I don’t like that message. You are White, like Elsa—if you dressed up as a character like Moana, who has brown skin, you would never change your skin colour.”

Here's the thing ... I get where she is coming from to an extent but are we really going to turn Disney Princesses into a racist hot button? Why not let a white child dress up as Moana? I'm white and Scottish - I don't see any issue with a black child dressing up as Merida.

Making a thing about not being allowed to dress up as a specific princess due to the colour of your skin makes it about something bigger. Telling a black child they cant dress up as Elsa must be devastating when you realise that she is EVERWHERE! I doubt very much that the child sees the colour of the princess ... to them they see someone magical that inspires them. Its easy to read messages into things like you have to have "long blonde hair and blue eyes" to be viewed as "beautiful" - Just like i can read into the medias view of tall, skinny women are beautiful and that my pale, curvy body isn't pretty. How you view something and how something really is can be two very different things. I am more worried about why this blogger thinks that's the message these Princesses carry, rather than take them at face value.

Last week Agent M and i were in Disneyland Paris and while there i saw loads of little ones dressed as their favourite character. Not once did i thing "I as a white woman am offended by a little Asian girl dressed as Elsa" nor was my son offended as a white male for any black child dressed as Spider-man, Thor or Captain America.

I have been told that being white i have lived a "privileged life" and that i don't understand the struggles that many cultures face, and i accept to a certain extent that is true. I am not here saying that it should be OK to paint your face black and go out trick or treating. That is absolutely not OK and is in my opinion racist. My argument here is about Children watching these Disney films and wanting to be that character.

Magic Dreams by SilentMermaid21 (DeviantArt) 

When i was younger my sister and i used to dress up all the time in our Disney costumes. We had so many that I'm surprised my parents didn't own shares in the Disney Store. One of my absolute favourites was the Jasmine costume. I remember running around the house belting out "A whole new world" while pretending i was on a magic carpet. I didn't know that i was technically culturally misappropriating the whole Arab community. I was a princess and i felt magical. My sister used to dress up as Pocahontas and act out scenes while singing "Colours of the Wind" - at 4 years old she didn't know that she was technically being racist toward native Americans.

Right now, reading all these comments about how these children are being racist, it hurts my heart to think that something so innocent is being twisted and turned into something sinister.

But where does it stop. Today i have seen people attacked for doing their make-up as a Day of the Dead skeleton as its cultural appropriation of a Mexican holiday. Seriously.

So going by that logic, absolutely no-one but a Mexican person should be allowed to wear a sombrero, no white person should be allowed to wear dreads, no black person should be allowed to have blonde hair and no-one other than the Scots should be allowed to wear a kilt and only the Irish should be allowed to wear green on saint Patrick's day.

Doesn't the saying go Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery?

Yes i agree that children should be taught that racism is not acceptable, but i think there are more important issues we should be focusing on. Kids will have the rest of their lives to deal with these kinds of problems. For now just let them be kids and be whichever princess they want to be.