The madness of 'cultural appropriation' exposed

Keziah Daum is an 18-year-old high school girl who set off a worldwide debate on the idea of "cultural appropriation."  Daum wore a dress to prom loosely based on a Chinese design and committed the mortal sin of not being Chinese. 

She was called out for her sin by another teen, Jeremy Lam:

Keziah Daum is an 18-year-old high school girl who set off a worldwide debate on the idea of "cultural appropriation."  Daum wore a dress to prom loosely based on a Chinese design and committed the mortal sin of not being Chinese. 

She was called out for her sin by another teen, Jeremy Lam:

 

 

The rest of the story is still being written.  But it's safe to say there has never been as much pushback against the towering idiocy of left-wing political correctness than there has been on this one issue.

Miss Daum is one of the reasons the resistance is so effective.  She is every high school boy's dream prom date.  She's pretty, intelligent, vivacious – and quietly courageous.  She has endured tens of thousands of mean, nasty, personally insulting entries on social media platforms with a grace and aplomb that should have her parents bursting with pride and the rest of us humbled.

Should people of Chinese ancestry and origin be upset?  Apparently, the Chinese people are cheering Miss Daum on.

Fox News:

On May 1, an article on Wenxue City News covering Daum's story largely voiced applause for her look, the English-language outlet South China Morning Post reported.

"Very elegant and beautiful!  Really don't understand the people who are against her, they are wrong!" a supporter chimed in of the cheongsam, otherwise known as a qiapo.  "I suggest the Chinese government, state television or fashion company invite her to China to display her cheongsam!"

"It is not cultural theft.  It is cultural appreciation and cultural respect," another agreed.

Of course it is – except on the left, where Miss Daum is either a villain or a dolt.  Jeff Yang, a regular contributor to CNN.com, believes the latter:

Cultural appropriation is a real and serious concern that's deeply intertwined with issues like colonialism, labor theft, racial privilege and ethnic stereotyping.  Dismissal of the phenomenon is often simply a knee-jerk reaction by those seeking to assail what they see as "political correctness."

But as always with these discussions, it pays to consider context before opening fire.

"Context"?  How can there be any context to a completely fabricated issue?

Which brings us back to Keziah Daum's decision to wear a qipao to her prom.  She clearly didn't consider the full implications of her decision to not just wear the dress, but to post pictures of herself doing so on social media without explanation.  And her comments to the press make it apparent that she hasn't fully reflected on the way that wearing outfits or hairstyles associated with other cultures is itself an expression of privilege.

Of course she didn't consider the "full implications" of her decision or "fully reflect" that her simple choice of wearing a pretty dress might be "an expression of privilege."  That's because she's a normal, mentally healthy person who doesn't look for ways to offend anyone and certainly doesn't scour the internet for something to be outraged about.

"Culture has no borders.  There is no problem, as long as there is no malice or deliberate maligning.  Chinese cultural treasures are worth spreading all over the world," one user mused.  Got that, snowflakes?  Stop picking on a pretty 18-year-old girl because she wanted a prom dress to remember. 

"Cultural appropriation" may be the sickest, most outrageously stupid element of political correctness in existence.  The history of human civilization would never be known without the Egyptians culturally appropriating the idea of writing from some unknown source.  Every major advance in the history of civilization has occurred because of one culture appropriating and improving upon an idea or invention from another culture.

Can you imagine what the world would be like if the invention of agriculture had remained in the fertile crescent?  It is mind-boggling that in a country that has made cultural appropriation a huge part of its identity, there would be those who would accuse anyone of "privilege" for doing what comes naturally to humans: learning from others.

I don't think the cultural appropriation accusers will be able to gain as much traction with anyone except the true believers after this incident.