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Old 11-10-2014, 10:19 AM   #14
Joe's Dad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OLChemist View Post
@TeenaBear, let's step aside from the cultural appropriation issues for a moment and let's just look at the sexual message within these "Pocahottie" costumes, of which these children's costumes are often a subset.

Do you know as a Native young woman part of your "birthright" is a 34% probability of experiencing sexual violence in your lifetime? This is 2.5 times the rate for white women. There is an estimated 86% likelihood the perpetrator with be non-Native. This is more than twice the rate for white women and more than 4 times the rate for black women.

What does this have to do with a faux buckskin costume, with it's mini-skirt slit to the hip? Part of that endeavor called Manifest Destiny was justifying to the dominant culture actions that ran counter to their deep, albeit patriarchal, religious and ethical roots. Part of this propaganda blitz was the degradation of our women, moving them even closer to animal status by depicting them as vicious, drudges that were sexually loose and available to all comers.

This empowered the use of sexual violence as a tool of colonial power. Raping an Indian woman didn't involve crossing the same moral line, since "our men treated us worse" and "Indian women are like that." Once we were reduced to military and political powerlessness, our women (and children) became an all you can eat, free buffet for sexual predators. And because of deeply ingrained stereotypes about Indians women's sexuality and Native substance abuse, authorities were and are often reluctant to expend the energy necessary to navigate the jurisdictional minefield of post-exparte Crow Dog Indian country, leaving us without even the protections offered by the dominant culture.

(Putting aside the disturbing and disgusting sexualization of children.) Wearing one of these outfits that conforms to dominant culture ideas of our women's dress, gender roles, and sexual availability just reenforces the stereotypes. It is a tiny step in the chain that leads to the ER, the rape crisis center, the homeless shelter, so on. For us as Native women to choose to ignore the objectification and distortion of our traditional roles is to bow to the colonizer's yoke.
Good post. Is there any other Disney Princess character dressed in a short dress or are all others in long sequined gowns?
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