Mixed race fishing is a gateway to cultural appropriation

In our world today, racial fishing is a prominent form of modern cultural appropriation and erasure, popularized by social media. As White creators continually make themselves appear to be a different race than they were born, falsifying their experiences and their background, they commit harmful erasure, speaking over people of color while simultaneously mocking them. Racial fishing represents the fundamental paradox of modern racism: the White colonialism culture of stealing and trend-ifying aspects of POC appearance and tradition, but not the struggles, of which they caused. 

Most racial fishing online has been that of imitating Black or Asian traits, hence the terms blackfishing and Asianfishing, but recently, a new type of racial fishing has risen: mixed race fishing. Artists and creators like Ariana Grande, the Kardashians and Mika Francis have distorted their true race by making their appearance seem racially ambiguous, leading the public to be afraid to question their acts of cultural appropriation (see Ariana Grande’s music video for “7 Rings” and her “tan” since Victorious, the Kardashians’ regular acts of cultural appropriation and Mika Francis’ box braids) for fear of being rude. By hiding their true backgrounds, but not quite assuming a distinctly different one, these White people benefit from taking and using other cultures freely and proudly, without question of backlash.

In turn, the experiences of actually mixed people of color are dismissed. Mixed peoples’ are often told that they are only white passing because they don’t fit westernized stereotypes of people in their racial group, while these people have literally stolen their identities. The experiences of those whose cultures are being appropriated have to not only face the trauma that this intrinsically leaves behind, but also face harassment for calling out these influencers. 

White ideas of beauty standards change from moment to moment, but the “trend-ification” of the natural features of people of color should not be something ever considered in or out of season. Slanted eyes, heavy tans, big lips and many others, are appropriated on the daily by White peers while people of color are still often mocked and told they aren’t as beautiful as their white counterparts imitating the exact look.

Mixed race fishing takes advantage of this trust, and is a disgusting shortcut to get away with cultural appropriation guiltlessly. No one is entitled to present their experiences as the experiences and traumas of others, and especially not that of people color. Society cannot pick and choose who they patronize for certain traits.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.