A fiery discussion on cultural appropriation broke out following a disagreement on the issue between GB News’ Nigel Farage and YouTuber Nella Rose in the I’m A Celeb jungle.
Patrick Christys hosted a conversation with deputy Ukip leader, Rebecca Jane, and anti-racism activist Imarn Ayton to discuss cultural appropriation and whether it should be taken seriously.
Patrick began: “Rebecca, I will start with you. Is cultural appropriation offensive? Does it exist? What is it?”
“You mean wearing fancy dress?” joked Jane. “Essentially, no. Patrick, I think is what I’m trying to say. So absolutely not. You know, if I go and walk down the street today and I’ve got a garland of garlic and onions around my neck and I’m clutching a baguette, I don’t understand why anybody would ever take any kind of offence to that.
Deputy Leader of UKIP, Rebecca Jane, and anti-racism activist Imarn Ayton discuss cultural appropriation
“You know, when we were talking about obviously the Mexican theme when it was being discussed in the jungle. I don’t understand why everything has to be offensive today.
“Why can it not be seen as a sign of appreciation? If I’m going down the street with a baguette in one hand, it’s because I love the French. And if I’m dressing up as a Mexican, it’s because I flipping love tequila. So no, I don’t think it is. I think it’s gone too far.”
Ayton came in, saying: “Rebecca, I appreciate your sentiment. I actually agree with you to an extent. If you decide you want to walk around with a baguette and and and appreciate the French, well, we’re not taking into consideration racial prejudice, right? So that’s the white person acknowledging another white person and being happy for one culture that’s white and another culture that’s white.
“We’re talking about black people here, OK. We’re talking about Mexicans here, OK. If you decide you’re going to dress up in a Mexican hat or African garments, you need to take in consideration that those individuals have a certain life.
“And so what you don’t have to contend with is the racial prejudice and the bias that goes along with that culture. That’s why.”
Patrick tried to move the conversation back to Rebecca for a response though Ayton interrupted, saying “Let me finish my point!”
“And this is the problem that we face,” said Jane. “Is that there’s always somebody looking to win and there’s always somebody trying to make an argument. You’re not trying to have a conversation with me. I was enjoying myself listening to what you were saying until you went off on your little tangent. I actually really enjoyed listening and trying to understand the point that we’re having.
“The point that I make is that I don’t understand why Beyoncé can go around with blonde hair and blue eyes, and that’s not offensive. But if I wore cornrows, it absolutely would be!”
Discussion between Rebecca Jane and anti-racism activist Imarn Ayton turned fiery as the two disagreed
“This is a difference between appreciation, which can be steeped when it pertains to black people in terms of internalised racism and not feeling good enough. And this is why we resort to using your hair. But that’s an aside, right?
“We’re actually talking about why black people can get away with it. The reason why is because of appreciation. There’s a difference between appreciation and appropriation.”
Patrick disagreed, saying: “As far as I can tell, the difference between appreciation and appropriation is that a white person can’t show cultural appreciation.”
Though Patrick threw it over to Jane, Ayton spoke over both, saying ‘Wrong. Wrong. Wrong,”
“Can somebody please cut her mic off?” Said Jane, looking exasperated.
Jane’s made one final point, saying: “if you’ve not had a conversation with somebody you don’t know their reasons for wearing cornrows? How can you decide that they are wrong for doing it and they are racist if you’ve not even had the conversation?!”
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