Dear Burning Man…

This video highlights the cultural appropriation issues, showing how some Burners really just don’t give a shit if some First Nations people are deeply offended by their antics.

Read the comments at Facebook…people are pretty upset about this. I’m not sure BMorg can take their usual approach of issuing a statement saying “we’ve listened to all of your concerns and we take them seriously”, then proceeding to do nothing whatsoever.

See also:

We Will Shut Down The Roads To Burning Man – Alarm at Cultural Appropriation

Dear White People, Standing Rock Is Not Burning Man

Standing Rock Coming To Black Rock

25 comments on “Dear Burning Man…

  1. When all think alike, no one is thinking. It would be nice if people who project a deep understanding of human nature could walk a mile in the moccasins they are trying to represent. Possibly, one might think about their actions and or words before acting on a shallow thought.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. It can end up being self-defeating to take too much offense at the people who love you and ignorantly offend you because they are admirers. Those people were signing petitions to free you and can be allies against real threats.

    There may be forces actually seeking to oppress and disrespect you. We are better off by coming together. Sure, educate and already there are less war bonnets at festivals and burning man. (as if war with other natives, before the white invasion, was a sacred thing, Natives have their own faults like the glorification in some tribes of war and stealing from each other)

    I understand people are wounded. Know there is an option to be strong like you are and bring your friends together rather than fighting the whole world

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It can end up being self-defeating to take too much offense at the people who love you and ignorantly offend you because they are admirers. Those people were signing petitions to free you and can be allies against real threats.

    There may be forces actually seeking to oppress and disrespect you. We are better off by coming together. Sure, educate and already there are less war bonnets at festivals and burning man. (as if war, before the white invasion, was a sacred thing, Natives have their own faults like the glorification in some tribes of war and stealing from each other)

    I understand people are wounded. Know there is an option to be strong like you are and bring your friends together rather than fighting the whole world

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  4. People who invalidate the emotional response to disrespectful expressions tamed as cultural appropriation are insensitive assholes who lack compassion and the desire to embrace the concerns of their fellow man. That behavior is the epitome of privilege and narcissism. Take a moment and think if you would allow someone to enter your home and pick out an item they like, take it without your permission and parade around town as though they not only own it but created it not ever once realizing or caring about the history attached to that item.

    I believe there are people who have great intentions out there who want to passionately participate. However, there are those who wear it as a cute costume and parade it while wearing a glittery veil of disrespect. That needs to stop. That is as violent and oppressive as a neo nazi screaming “white power”.

    If you care you listen. If you condemn you don’t care.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Would it be offensive to wear a kilt in Scotland? It wouldn’t really. Is it right you harass and judge other burners for taking drugs? Like she said you don’t know her. You stereo typed her by the colour of her skin. You don’t know her.

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  6. I have nothing but respect for all peoples of the world. That being said, why does ‘cultural appropriation’ only apply to North American tribes only? What about all the other cultures that people take or borrow from? For instance. The NATIVE AMERICANS from central and South America don’t come unglued when individuals use headdresses from their culture.Although I’m sure it’s not appreciated. The Spaniards and English MASSACRED the natives in central and South America. The indigenous tribes don’t seem to still be spouting off about how much they hate the spaniards and how terrible they are. Why? Because they know it is what it is and they have chosen to move on with their lives and try to live in harmony as much as they can. Peru is a great example of this. If anything, many cultures roll their eyes because they know many North Americans are stupid. The fact is, what one chooses to focus on, one gets. Like choosing to focus more on drunk idiots wearing sacred headdresses, then maybe the government still trying to exterminate you and your people. Priorities. I was there at the standing rock prayer, and I felt it to be very uplifting and powerful. There were MANY different unique individuals, there were also Asian, Hispanic, African American, and South American individuals. As well as numerous Europeans. Shocking! To ignore the people that are trying to help and are projecting love and compassion and focus on drunk idiots and sparkle ponies? Are you FUCKING KIDDING ME?
    end of rant.

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  7. Oh please. The whining about cultural appropriation is really getting tiresome. Personally I have no interest in attending powwows (I’m not spiritual), or donning faux Native attire (not my style), but with all due respect the whole festival is a cultural appropriation. You have camps appropriating Middle Eastern and Islamic themes and then serving alcohol -probably bacon too. You have Day of the Dead festivities… all manners of yoga and meditation workshops peddled by pseudo-gurus culturally appropriating whatever they learned at some retreat… hell the whole Temple is one big amalgam of appropriations from all sorts of mostly Eastern religions. I guess it’s OK to appropriate some cultures but not others? Or maybe it’s just whoever whines about it most. If a whole culture is threatened by some sparkle pony’s choice of attire, then I would argue that the foundations of said culture are not very strong to begin with.

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  8. A ritual, done for the right reasons, cannot be harmed, cannot lose its power, by another person doing something out of ignorance. It is more dangerous to the human spirit to limit the breadth self expression than it is risk some kids wearing feathers out of ignorance. The powers that be love this argument. Right now the public argument is about what a bunch of kids are wearing to festivals rather than the continued systematic abuse of native peoples.

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  9. Native people were colonized and killed by millions by white people,later were forced to live in reservations . That is history. It is deep seated trauma and pain.. When drunk/sober white person wearing native headdress it is understandable that native feels offended because it brings back all the pain. It is just matter of respect to listen to their concern. Radical self expression doesn’t mean radical selfishness. It is simple,really. If your friend offended or hurt by thing you say or wear, you don”t brag about your right to do whatever you want. If you care you stop and listen. Peace!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Never in all my years of state schools was it mentioned how the ceremeonial costumes are deeply sacred to the wearer and their comunity. The educational system at the time i was forced thru identified ceremonial dance as nothing more than cultural theatrics similar to our own holiday traditions. Should people be less stupid sure but who is going to teach them that all they have been taught is mostly wrong and or lies?
    I see burners and other people adopting these elements of ceremonial dress as a form of expression, they use for many different reasons. Where and whom do they purchase these items? Are they made from sacred feathers blessed by an elder or are they not really same as your sacred ceremonial items made from hawk, eagle, owl or other highly regarded spirit animals or are these just died chicken and turkey feathers being sold to tourists? Imitation gear worn by posers should not be of concern to the first nation, the long list of treaties violated by the US corporation is more an issue for me an i have but a slim fraction of native blood.
    Ive been to a pow wow or two and there was dtinking going on and dancers performing in colofully died feathers that were making elders cringe. What is right what is the best solution, is there a solution for everyone? Open communication is a wonderful thing lets use it more and try to individually be the change we would like to see in our world.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. One camp in burningman offended you, and you blame all of burningman? Or a few ignorant people shearing headdresses? And what if some of those people are truly modern day chiefs in their own right and their spirit calls for that attire …because you can trace your bloodline in the past 500 years back this culture do you not believe that their blood goes back just as far? If you think this as fight to honor your people then I encourage to go back
    To burningman a bit less judgemental and just avoid the camp of ignorant folk and go meet all the other geniuses that build things even your ancestors would find joy and honor in being fortunate enough to be able to witness and try to be like a little bit more greatful that your biggest problem you can think of making a viral video for is ignorant poorly educated white people dawning your people’s attire while in Syria their currently is no country and in places like Venezuela a person dies every 20 seconds from a violence…. seriously 2017 science can prove we’re all native on some level to somehwere on the same planet

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    • Bull. Shit.

      No one who has earned the right to wear a legit war bonnet is either a) female or b) wearing it with blacklight paint at Robot Heart.

      If your “spirit” tells you that you are a chief and are entitled to wear the regalia of a people almost exterminated for their culture and race, then your spirit is an asshole and not welcome at my camp.

      Liked by 1 person

      • To be fair “a legit war bonnet” would be made of feathers a non-native Burner would be prohibited from having. What you are talking about is a illegitimate war bonnet. While this is understandably hurtful, I believe the discussion takes away from the much more important discussion of the continued abuse of native peoples by the government.

        Liked by 1 person

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