A browse through my Facebook groups brought a post from Sociological Images to my attention; the following pic was the talking point (before it was removed)…
Predictably, condemnation saturated the tone of Lisa Wade’s post, which castigated the troublesome trio for their sartorial sins; particular attention got paid to the bird in the middle, dolled up as “Anne Skank”, for apparently “sexualiz[ing] and laugh[ing] at [the] 15-year-old victim of the holocaust” her moniker rhymes with.
My masochist streak urged me to trawl through the trough of the comments section, where Wade’s outrage was matched and exceeded by a blitzkrieg of bleaters moaning about such things as the “misogyny” of “skank”, and the “race privilege” of the happy Halloweeners (never mind the bloke in the pic belonging to one of the pet groups of the folk who coin such terms). Any voices of dissent criticizing the Holocaust exceptionalism got drowned in a deluge of PC patois.
It seems, in their righteous indignation, the offenditarians missed something which had hit me in the face within seconds of viewing the pic: this is the perfect get-up for Halloween!
As I scribed in the comments section:
Seeing that Nazis are the boogeymen of the Western world, and Anne Frank haunts the cultural conscience, aren’t Skank and her Anne Flankers getting into the spirit of Halloween by dressing up in such garms?
Five minutes later, Wade closed the comment thread.
[EDIT (1/11/11): It seems Miss Wade had a change of mind and re-opened her comments section.]
Wade’s not the only one scorning the spirit of the season, though; elsewhere, one Sarah Williams, president of the STARS organisation, kickstarted a campaign calling out costumes that “reinforces stereotypes”(sic).
And again, as well as thinking my Nazi theory applies just as well to Islamist suicide bombers, I’m not seeing what all the uproar is about. Clearly, the folk in the pic don’t resemble the cultural stereotypes they take umbrage with—I know I’m not bothered by some ghetto-wannabe bint in blackface—so why give such a fuck? Who, for example, actually thinks all Oriental birds are geisha (and if they wanted potentially offensive stereotypes to work with, wouldn’t the prozzie from Full Metal Jacket be a better fit)?
I wonder, if someone were to dress up as a fucking leprechaun, would STARS be up in arms against “cultural stereotyping” against Irish folk? Not according to their treasurer, Stephanie Sheeley, who, in an interview with ColorLines, invoked the lame “racism is prejudice plus power” meme to rationalize the differences in reaction.