Casual racism


People props are bad enough, but when they are there to encompass a culture that does not actually consist purely of people in bright colored tights and suspenders, we have a little issue. These identical expressionless girls were described as ‘clumsiest attempt to appropriate Japanese culture and fashion since Gwen Stefani’s ill-advised Harajuku phase back in 2004. Maybe clumsier” by Gawker’s Jay Hathaway.

What is even clumsier is when this singer laughs and mocks the suggestion of racism, someone from a supposedly multicultural civilization, yet seemingly living in her own pink, red frilled, tiered bubble (skirt). Whether intentional or unintentional there are distinct “stereotypes” that society has constructed, automatically merging individual traits with group identity and there we have, a blatant case of racism, heightened by the media, an influential and dominating system in society.

Dearest Avril, you’re a ‘public’ figure, you’re accountable to the general public for your actions. Also as one of the beneficiaries of institutionalized racism, you aren’t as entitled as you may think to decide what is and isn’t racist. P.s. You might want to do a double take on your idea of racism, because flying to the country you are amplifying does really make it okay… Oops.

If you love Japan as much as you claim, it might be worth trying to listen to the Asian women that have spoken out against your inappropriate song lyrics and accompanying ‘music’ video, Keep Holding On, or better luck next time Avril.

Yillin Kang & Rachel Lobo