There’s honestly no debate the fashion industry, and most people online, consistently ignore black women’s requests to respect and acknowledge the importance of black hairstyles to black culture. And just like clockwork, another race-related issue emerged in fashion this week, sparking yet another “culture appropriation” debate.
Marc Jacobs sent white models down the runway wearing multicolored faux dreadlocks. Commenters on Instagram quickly voiced their disappointment with the designer for appropriating a hairstyle that should exclusively be worn by individuals with afro-textured hair. This prompted Jacobs to respond with the cliché phrase coined by most people doing something racist: “I don’t see color or race—I see people.”
Jacobs’ comment immediately caused backlash all over social media, including hundreds of angry tweets that perfectly summed up why the designer’s explanation was so immature and ill informed.
Dreadlocks are part of black culture, something you have no business trying to sell or appropriate.
— maia (@sebologist) September 16, 2016
if Marc Jacobs wanted to add black culture to his fashion why didn’t they just hire black models with actual dreads???
— ️ (@rnbzains) September 15, 2016
Plus, lots of WoC/BW were shamed for their hair textures of curls, kinks, and coils so they straightened it. There’s that @marcjacobs
— . (@fairywiak) September 16, 2016
— Clara (@datldngal) September 16, 2016
Does Marc Jacobs think that white people invented straight hair lmao
— #NoDAPL (@zoexrain) September 16, 2016
The entire “cultural appropriation” debate, along with discussions surrounding black hair, has always been sensitive. We all know black girls have been forced to stop wearing their natural hair in schools and that black people have made headlines over the years after being fired for having their hair in locs. So if black women, as a whole, say they find something offensive, why do people continue doing it? Amandla Stenberg explained it best:
Marc Jacobs? Cancelled.