November 30, 2013

Stereotypical Dress-Up Fridge Magnets

Someone posted a link to this British product on Facebook's Native Appropriations page:

Dress Up Fridge MagnetsWe love dressing up! So why stop at dressing ourselves up… With our Dress Up Fridge Magnets you can give your best friend an Indian headdress and give your cat some bling and at the same time attach them to your fridge door. Choose from over 28 magnets and create a funny new look for your photos of friends, family & pets.Comment:  Dressing up your dog as an Indian chief, as in the photo...that kinds of says it all about what's wrong with this product. Needless to say, selecting two ethnic groups for this dubious treatment is discriminatory.

If you don't see it, add a "blackface" magnet with kinky hair and big red lips. Now do you get it?

At this point, I think the British have a lot of experience with blacks, Asians, and Arabs. They don't have much experience with Indians or Latinos.

Is it a coincidence that the company treats these two brown-skinned groups as exotic others? And trivializes their diverse cultures with stupid stereotypes? Probably not.

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