Why Didn't Anyone Notice Macklemore's Anti-Semitic Costume at EMP?

Comments

1
He raps about getting good deals, wasn't that already antisemitic? Or is that cultural appropriation?
2
Maybe he was going for Amish and lost his straw boater.
4
Did anyone at the Stranger notice when an employee took part in a black face Halloween costume?
5
Looks like president Lincoln in "bling" from the picture tweeted. Shall we call him anti-Emancipation now? Is this an example of Abesploitation?
6
ohhhhhh noooooooooooooo...
7
I'm wondering if he was trying to go as Ringo Starr...
8
Seattle's passive aggressive conflict avoidance will always trump it's PC sensibilities.
9
Also the website for the event says "Dress as your favorite music icon or video character."
10
Uhhhh.... before the pictures materialized, I expected you were talking about something more subtle. Even if he didn't do it on purpose originally, there is no way someone didn't warn him ahead of time. WTF?
11
Apparently whoever mentioned "Abesploitation" hit a bit of a nerve with Slog.
12
Working on a long term deal with Disney?

But that's pretty bad--I mean, fake nose, too?
13
What exactly makes this costume Jewish?
14
I'm not saying this is NOT antisemitic, but is there anything besides the nose that suggests "Jewish stereotype"? I see the beard but beards are almost inherent to any disguise so... Just trying to think of any other reasonable explanation.
15
I actually don't know anything about Macklemore, but Ansel has a tweet on the right side of the blog saying he was in this costume performing a song called "Thrift Shop."
16
@15
Duh. He wrote that in the main post, too.
17
@13, @14

Google "Jewish peddler stereotype" and see what images come up.
18
He tweeted his excuse: "Some of my best friends are Jewish!"

Well there you go.
19
Seriously though, Beatles hair cut, at an music event where people dress like famous musicians, big nose....why is peoples first thought "Jewish Caricature" and not Ringo Starr?

http://www.beatlesarchive.net/wp-content…
File:The_Fabs.JPG">http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:The_Fa…

If this does turn out to be a Jewish costume, yeah that's really fucked up, but if it turns out to be a Ringo costume, then what does that say about those jumping to jewish caricature?
20
@18 except that that tweet was from a year ago and sounded tongue in cheek.
21
@19 The Ringo costume at the costume store has a beard? Are you really arguing this?

22
Tony Clifton really doesn't give a fuck what y'all think.
23
This is a good idea for a halloween costume. I'm already planning to go as a paid news reporter on assignment in Haiti - the sterotype is so classic.
24
Unbelievable and shameful by both Macklemore and the media who attended.

Also unbelievable and shameful, people who "give it a pass" or "don't see it" (even though I don't see how that's possible here). You don't get to define what another group of people is insulted by, mocked by, oppressed by. You can draw attention to it, which is what the media should have done (and Ansel and others in the media are doing now). You can ignore it if you really don't care. But if you're actively dismissing it, you're becoming part of the oppressive power structure and being anti-Semitic as well.
25
If he were going full Jew I think there'd be a payot involved (the curled sidelocks). Getting a bit sensitive about a costume with a beard and fake nose (which has to be larger than your real nose). It's not like he was passing out gold-foil wrapped coins and twerking a giant dreidel.
26
White privilege Ansel knows all.
27
@21 Ringo has had a beard, its honestly not that far fetched. Google pictures of Ringo
28
They didn't immediately respond. Did they respond at all and you're keeping it to yourselves, or did they just never get back to you?
29
I really dont care about this or if you wear a sombrero for cinco de mayo. Pick your battles on what to get outraged about. complaining about every single costume "appropriation" kinda waters it down your argument.
30
I don't understand. When has this guy ever done anything to incite the spitefulness people seem so eager to treat him with. I think of him, I think of Same Love & his love for our city. I don't think guy going out of his way to be an insensitive fuck.
31
Uh... I think this dude's shit is whack as fuck, but this doesn't look like a Jewish caricature to me. It looks like the shittiest fake nose, beard, and wig you can possibly find.
32
@9: So what music icon or videogame star do you think he's trying to be? Because I can't think of a single one, and I love me some videogames.
33
@30: Dude shut down Broadway so he could play with his Dick(s).
34
According to Macklemore's Twitter feed, it's just supposed to be a random, wacky costume. It does look like the Jewish equivalent of blackface though. Like something out of one of those old anti-Semitic, Nazi propaganda films.
35
Sonny Bono
36
Ansel,
Indeed, when I read this morning's Seattle Times and saw the pic, I thought "What's with the Fagin (Dickens' character from Oliver Twist) nose?". No kidding, very weird.
37
@27 Give it a rest. I've got a life time of Ringo. Intentional or not, there is nothing about this visual presentation that says, "Ringo", and everything that matches the classic Nazi visual representation of Jews. This is really horrible and insulting.
38
I can't believe, with all the cooks in his kitchen, there wasn't one person to say NO, FOR FUCK'S SAKE, DON'T WEAR THAT, WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU THAT YOU THINK THAT'S A GOOD IDEA??!
39
@38 I'm with you. Was there no one to say, "Seriously, dude, don't do that." ? Is he that insulated from society and history?
40
I think it's disgusting and exactly a nazi propaganda stereotype - we could go round and round all night long guessing as to his intent, and my honest guess would be that he's just a clueless jackass. The only real surprise to me here is just what I said above.
41
Meanwhile, inequality has increased every year of Obama's presidency.
42
Ansel, isn't it exhausting to be outraged 24/7? I think you are in danger of adrenal fatigue or something.
43
I can't believe I'm defending Macklemore, BUT the stranger is being VERY inappropriate by saying that a man with a big nose mask is lookin all jewey...

Idiots.
44
He looks like a smurf. I can't believe this shit.
45
Seattlites are so fucking clueless and so is he. I love that a major DORK like Macklemore is on the national stage because he typifies the typical white Seattle bubblehead with all the stupid shit he says and does.

Keep up everything that you do, Macklemore. I thoroughly enjoy sitting back and watching you consistently make a fool of yourself, all while sucking your own cock in self love and not "getting" all the haters. Joke's on you, dipshit. Where's my popcorn?
46
He better post one hell of a convincing hipster apology on twitter today. All he was missing was the yamaka and curls.
47
@45 It's impossible for me to read your comment without thinking of Kevin from Ed, Edd, 'n Eddy riding past on a bicycle yelling "Dorks!" just because.
48

Jewish caricature??

He doesn't even have horns.

49
The no-brainer here is that he should simply apologize. The whole, "It wasn't racist!" thing is not going to get him anywhere.
50
This is obviously a worldwide conspiracy involving shady world bankers at the highest levels, and probably lizard men from another dimension. Is anything safe from the clutches of the joooooooooooooz?

Haven't any of you sheeple read The Protocols of Zion?

-Juche
51
The only thing missing from this crazy conversation is BENGHAZI.

What the hell is wrong with you? You are primed for outrage and see offence where there is none. Stop assuming the worst of people and spend your time and energy on non-imaginary problems.
52
Am I the only one whose first thought was this?

http://i.imgur.com/VdlOb1X.jpg
53
I don't get why someone with money and access to stylists would go to a costume party with a theme (music icons/videostars) wearing "just some random disguise items". You don't go to a tarts and vicars party in a cowboy outfit. He could have been a great Ringo, if he'd stuck to just the wig and nose. The beard was a stupid add-on.
54
It's a wig, beard and nose. It's not a Jew costume. Look at the suit. There is nothing jewish about that suit. It's not a particularly jewish beard and not a jewish wig at all (as has been noted, no payes). Also, no hat. Come on, folks. The only thing that triggered this idea was the nose.

So, to say that this is an anti-semitic costume is to say that all big noses and references to big noses regardless of their context are anti-semetic. That doesn't seem valid to me. Moreover, I think that draws far too strong a relationship that says big nose=jewish.

I think he looks a lot more like Ringo Starr than a Jewish stereotype.
55
A few thoughts....

@ Ansel, while this is a cut and dried case of someone dressed as a harmful stereotyped caricature, I hope you were just being not fully thought out when you said this:

Being told you did something racist, especially by members of a group that suffers from said racism, is not an invitation to take it personally...


The plural givesa greater chance that said charges of racism by said members of a minority group are justified, but you seem to be saying that if a member of a minority group charges that the actions or words of a person outside that group are racist/sexist/etc, then those charges are to be accepted at face value. I hope that we all recognize that any such charge must not be accepted until it's been examined. One of the left's greatest weaknesses is allowing the craziest people an equal platform and taking them seriously. Sometimes that's manifest in unjust charges of this or that -ism.

@ Everyone saying "I can't believe nobody told him that was fucked up," all I can say is that I totally believe that's possible because successful people tend to be surrounded by yes-men.

@ 52, I thought of that right away too, because they both have big fake noses. I can't think of what else they might have in common. Maybe the fact that dressing up like that is rare in hip-hop (or, if it's more common than I think, then only Humpty Hump was hugely successful and well known).
56
I will say that the beard is not totally in keeping with the Jewish stereotype. For one, there's no mustache, and for another, the beard is trimmed and shaped. Combine it with an almost-bowl hairstyle and it can pass for an Amish stereotype. But that's where you have to ask how the big nose fits in.
57
I can see it. Add my voice to the group who wonder why somebody didn't give the guy a reality check before he went out -- "Lose the nose, you know what that looks like?" It shows how complacent we are in our delusion that we are all racially benevolent -- we forget to check ourselves to see if we're becoming monstrous.

http://goatmilk.files.wordpress.com/2008…
58
Whoops, there is a mustache - it just wasn't visible in the first, low-angled photo. So much for any possible it's-an-Amish-stereotype deflecting.
59
When I was in the third grade I thought that I was a Jew,
'Cause I had big nose and beard and some kinda suit
I told my mom, tears rushing down my face
She's like "Ben, you've loved Ringo since before pre-K"
Trippin'.

And I can't change . . .
60
@Ansel Herz...You story asks this question..."Why Didn't Anyone Notice Macklemore's Anti-Semitic Costume at EMP?"

Maybe no one saw, or intended, it to be anti-semitic.

Can we give Macklemore that?

Given that possibility, once it's pointed out to him that some saw it that way Macklemore should step back and apologize if he unintentionally offended. The only crime I see, is he got defensive, when confronted. If your intentions are innocent, then step back and try to see it from the offended persons' perspective, and apologize.
62
@60

I once wrote something where the way some letters of the alphabet lined up, you could see a slur. No one called me on it, but when I realized it, I immediately apologized--none of that "if you were offended" crap or "sorry to those belong to the group that would have been the target of the slur. Aside from explaining that it was unintentional, it was as widespread and unequivocal as I could make it.
63
I'm sorry, but I don't see it, this time. Random costume is random.
64
Never mind, apparently he's mocking Adolf Hitler during that show.

http://i.imgur.com/vIPJuP5.jpg
65


This is what Jewish rappers look likes: http://thissongissick.com/wp-content/upl…
66
I was there. It was noticed by me and many other Seattlites. I did music stuff for many years and have known him for a long time. I'm not afraid to say he is WAY OFF THE MARK. https://www.facebook.com/shannon.stewart…. I also believe at some point he'll come around. If not, then celebrity has really got the best of him and that would be a huge bummer.
67
I was there performing that night and can say that many Seattlites noticed, were enraged and embarrassed. This was my post right after the show. . . "It was an awesome party. i think we did Daft Punk right but Macklemore bummed me out. . . not who I would expect to be totally out of line so WTF is up with this disguise? I know he's a superstar and whatnot but who does he think he is?. . . or moreover, who does he think his audience is? This is one of those moments when I'm like, this shit can only happen in Seattle. #macklemore #jewface #getaclue" https://www.facebook.com/shannon.stewart…
68
Is a Beatles' wig a Jewish stereotype? And honestly, if we was trying to go for a stereotypical Jewish look, why not just wear the payos and the yarmulke? No ambiguity there.
69
It would have helped if he were more specific about what he was dressing up as. Or maybe just did everything but the stupid nose. I think the nose is what's pushing people over the edge.
70
Yikes, ok since that wasn't Ringo but a "random" costume he should've known better. It's too easy for negative stereotypes to find their way into a "random" costume and someone who speaks out about things such as white privilege should know a lot better. He should apologize.

71
He looks like Patrick Troughton.
72
I guess, if we're going to play the "big nose = jew" card, then we need to publicly castigate Monty Python for this little gem.
73
Jewish guy here. Don't care at all. I seriously doubt Macklemore is actually some antisemite. Guy is just an idiot. His music is the more offensive thing here.
74
"Being told you did something racist, especially by members of a group that suffers from said racism, is not an invitation to take it personally and defend your intentions one way or the other. It's about taking a step back and evaluating whether your behavior is racist—if it results in discrimination or reinforces racial hierarchies or plays on ethnic tropes, for example."

Who the fuck made this rule up? I never asked for you're stupid opinion so why did you give it to me? I bow to no man and will not respond to your social threats with internal reflection about how I made you feel.
75
@56 There was a mustache at the beginning of the set.
76
I thought he looked more like your stereotypical caveman/Neanderthal caricature.
77
Meh.
78
@30 He's a white rapper.
79
The problem isn't just that is it a stereotype.

It is particularly outrageous because this caricature was used for a deadly political purpose and is widely know for it.

But, even assuming he and everyone around him is oblivious, their obliviousness, weirdly, in some ways makes it worse, because is shows so many people haven't been paying any attention at all. Or, is this just the first post-kristallnacht generation?
80
I kinda thought he looked a little like mahmoud ahmadinejad.

81
The costume makes no sense as a costume. It's completely random, slapdash, not stylish, and has no apparent thematic relevance to his music or performance. I have a hard time understanding how someone couldn't parse this as a Jewish stereotype, because it's the only way the costume isn't completely pointless and random.

So he either did something pointless and unintentionally racist, or he was deliberately playing with racist imagery. Neither makes him look very good, and he needs to do better than the non-apology apology "I didn't mean it; sorry you were offended."
82
DTMFA.
83
It's impossible to call this a Jewish caricature without something to show that he was trying to ape or mock Jewish culture. Is the hook nose a poor choice because it could be interpreted as "jewface?" Sure, but there's nothing else that says he was meaning this as a caricature. Did he sing Hava Nagila? Was there a star of David around his neck?

Everything but the nose looks Amish to me, so I'd say this was just a poor choice of costume, not something worth getting truly outraged over.
84
#83 -- and the others who insist that the costume wasn't Jewish because it didn't have Orthodox Judaic signifiers (payes, et al) -- do you want somebody who is possibly addressing a popular stereotype to hold up a big sign that says YES, I'M BEING RACIST NOW? Are you familiar with the concept of plausible deniability?

I wrote his apology for him. "I wore a costume that looked a lot like a bad stereotype, and I'm sorry I did it, and I won't do it again."
85
I was there and I didn't notice probably because I'm not racist.
86
It might be worth nothing that he pretty clearly made a bar mitzvah joke as well, "went to Costume Display today. Feel like a man for the first time" I was there and I thought it was pretty clear what he was doing. Disgusting.
87
Ansel, you should take a look at Digital Underground. You'd be appalled at their horrible anti-semitism. Fake nose! Heavy glasses! Won't *anyone* think of the children?!?!?
88
@86: that was sarcasm? hard to tell on this thread.
89
@85 Stephen Colbert is in the house, in character! "I don't see color!" Actually, assuming you are being honest, you didn't notice because you are ahistorical and wildly ignorant.

@86 ouch. missed the bar mitzvah joke. But you are right, what is the joke/point, otherwise of saying that?
90
Right about now he's regretting the choice JNOT to wear an R. Kelly/Lone Ranger style mask instead, I'm betting.
91
Meanwhile, further down on line-out you will find people creaming their pants about Death In June...an ACTUAL ANTISEMITE who uses ACTUAL NAZI (Y'MACH SHEMO) IMAGERY... how many comments on that thread??

92
@88 Oh, shit. Did I miss sarcasm? The stuff people say in defense of hurtful racism these days is so absurd, I expect them to say absurd things like that.
94
@92 And if there's one thing that's hurtful racism, it's a prosthetic nose.
95
Huh. I also tend to think those who look at this and immediately think "JEWISH!!!" are maybe perpetuating the stereotype themselves. He already has sort of a big nose. He put on a comically larger one and caveman hair. Why is that Jewish? I guess I'm wearing my stereotypical Christian costume today. I'd better go apologize to all of my Christian friends.
97
I see Ringo Starr too. I wouldn't have thought Jewish.
96
Here's the PI's report, with lots more pictures.

Ringo Starr? If he looks like Ringo, you know who else he looks like? Howard Wolowitz, who is definitely a Jewish character (played by a Jewish actor, I believe.)

http://www.seattlepi.com/entertainment/a…
98
@94, 95 -- Careful, guys. If you don't recognize this as an aggressive act of anti-Semetism, you're probably anti-Semetic yourself.

To be clear: you're with us or against us.
99
Yo that's definitely a caricature of an Ashkenazi Jew.

@94: Surprised it took your lying filth 94 comments to show up in this thread. You know you STILL haven't shown up with those totally-valid talking points you promised a couple weeks ago after I debunked your falsified quotations, right? Reported for fascism.
100
Are you all kidding!?

There's nothing to this - UNLESS - one can find ANY substantive history of racism.

What a stupid story.

And, I'd like to point out to the writer that when one 'cries wolf'...or, should we write, 'cries Wolff'.

Get it!? Wolff? A Jewish name? Get it?
101
#95 ...so if one complains about a stereotype, one is perpetuating the stereotype? No .. one is perpetuating the complaints against the stereotype.

Here's a question I guess none of us have asked: where did he get that fake nose and how is it marketed?
102
I thought he was dressed as a young Gandalf.