When I first went searching for photographs to accompany yesterday's post I remembered a meme from a few years back. At the time I remember it being half funny/half eye roll worthy. It didn't take me long to find it again. It's down below. I know this is a zero waste/minimalist blog, but really it's my blog, and no one thing lives in a vacuum. For the last two years I've been actively working on my blindspots in regards to issues such as systemic racism, white supremacy, cultural appropriation, gender, and white feminism vs. intersectional feminism. To name a few! As a white woman there is A LOT I need to learn and unlearn.
When I re-discovered this meme yesterday, I found it to be even more cringeworthy and less funny, but I couldn't put my finger on why exactly. I just knew that I didn't want to use it as the main photo yesterday or today. Hence the photo of my giant container of olive oil on yesterday's post. This meme felt and feels icky. Why?I started Googling and didn't find anything about this meme specifically, but I did find a couple of thought provoking articles about coconut oil, hair, and cultural appropriation. I thought this would be a great place to point out that using coconut oil for hair care is not some hot, new trend invented by young, thin, white, cis women, although that is how it looks if you do a simple internet search. I had to scroll down to the eighth row to find the first photo of a POC.
Here are three links I found yesterday that I wanted to share. This is not to say that white women can not use coconut oil in our hair. It's taking a moment to acknowledge the people and cultures that have been doing this for centuries. It's enjoying these hair care tips without completely erasing the people who got ridiculed for the very same thing we are now hailing as the solution to all of our problems, or at least 86 of them.
If You Don't Get the Problem with Cultural Appropriation, Listen to This
Why Cultural Appropriation is Real and Hurtful
My Indian Parents are Huge Fans of Cultural Appropriation, Even While My Generation Finds it Appalling