Native American Halloween Costume. (C) 2018, Jennifer Mitchell Henson. All rights reserved (used with permission).As the Halloween season approaches, the question of “appropriate” costumes is raised.

Regarding the question of “cultural appropriation” or “racism” regarding Halloween Costumes, there are two factors to consider:

  1. Is the individual INTENDING to cause someone emotional pain?
  2. A person cannot OFFEND another person, rather, a person can CHOOSE whether or not to BE OFFENDED by something.

Would a Police Officer be offended if a child dressed up as a cop? A Fire Fighter? An astronaut? A school teacher? No! Of course not!

Personally, as a member of the Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah; and speaking in my capacity as the President of the Utah Republican Native American Caucus: no, children dressing up as Natives for Halloween is NOT racist or offensive.

Happy Halloween, be safe, and have fun!

  • Joe Levi