Monday, October 12, 2009

New babies, new blogs, new bad news (for Oprah)

So much meltingpot news, so little time. What's a girl to do but tell it like it is. Just tell it like it is.

First, I want to say a big congrats to one of my favorite celebrity mixie families. Heidi Klum and Seal welcomed a baby girl into their truly blended family. Why is this important? It's not, really, I just think they make multicultural families look really good. Enhorabuena.!

Second, I'm wondering how many of you have heard of the new website The From their website:

" is the first video-centric news community site devoted to providing African Americans with stories and perspectives that appeal to them but are underrepresented in existing national news outlets. TheGrio features aggregated and original video packages, news articles, and blogs on topics from breaking news, politics, health, business, and entertainment, which concern its niche audience."

You can read my opinion piece on Chris Rock's movie Good Hair on their opinion pages. Feel free to let me know what you think.

Now, how many of you heard the news about the horrible deaths of two people in a crazy sweat lodge accident? Not to rehash the whole thing, but Oprah-appointed guru and co-author of The Secret, James Arthur Ray, was hosting a spiritual warrior event which culminated in a sweat lodge ceremony that he copied from Native American traditions. From what we know so far, two people died and several were hospitalized after being in the lodge for over two hours. Of course I don't know all the details, but it occurs to me when people try to appropriate other groups' cultural norms you're treading on dangerous ground. It doesn't have to end with death, but taking things out of their cultural context can lead to dangerous outcomes. Right? Can you think of any other examples like this?

I'm listening.



jstele said...

Well, it just shows the possible danger of ignorance. But I am actually surprised by this story. James Arthur Ray claims to have studied with Indians from the Americas and other peoples for years, so I don't think it was a copycat situation. I think if people really make the effort to understand the traditions and why they are done, it shouldn't lead to such problems. The only issue left would be appropriation.

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