— Rustling my jimmies: “transethnics”
So I just learned that there are actual people who genuinely believe that they’re another ethnicity. The first few pages of the #transethnic tag suggests that most of these people are actually white teenagers.
This is so bullshit that it merits pause and discussion.
Ethnic identity is not something you can just slather on yourself like cheap lipstick. Actually, that’s a bad analogy, because others can at least see your shitty choice in makeup and judge you for it. Transethnics conveniently get to circumvent the entire component of racial identity defined by how others perceive and treat you. They get to continue enjoying white privilege while also pretending that they are two different flavors of oppressed. The first layer of donned oppression consists of whatever history of racism has been directed towards the ethnic group they’re identifying as (assumption being that a history of oppression usually is a defining and integral part to most cultures suffering from appropriation), while the second layer is how others invariably condescend towards their “transethnicity.”
Any reasonably educated person will probably consider “transethnics” as full of bullshit. This is not another form of oppression, and does not make “transethnics” a novel marginalized group. It makes them privileged teenagers who get called out on their bullshit. They’re doing much more harm to the culture they so badly think they belong to because they’re furthering superficial and romanticized visions of that ethnicity, and they deserve to be mocked and chastised relentlessly.
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with finding aspects of another culture resonant, or being able to identify with another people. That shit’s good. Try to understand other people, by all means. However, people who claim to belong to another ethnicity while still enjoying white privilege cross the line. They aren’t a special kind of oppressed people. They’re just little shits with a passing fascination with K-Pop, war bonnets, or whatever other fad is trending on tumblr.