There was a Twitter storm and former footballer Stan Collymore, who has battled depression himself, tweeted ‘Dear ASDA, nice stereotype of ‘Mental patients’. Something you’d expect from the £££. A f***ing joke.’ He pointed out that many people are frightened of the stigma, and hurt themselves, sometimes fatally. Asda was forced to apologise and withdraw the product.
Halloween does offer a great opportunity to dress up and party, but you do have to be careful that you don’t sale too close to the wind and dress in something that is potentially offensive to other people. You can accuse us of being too PC if you like, but we’ve compiled a list of costumes we recommend you avoid. What are the most offensive Halloween costumes of all time?Avoid topical or long-remembered tragedies. Who can forget about the controversy of the students who dressed as the Twin Towers? I’ve also seen one for ‘Malaysian Airlines Flight Crew’. Anything blackface. Just 12 months ago, I would have assumed that nobody in Britain would paint their face for Halloween. Now in the light of Brexit, panic about immigration and child refugees, I’m not so sure. Blacking your face is offensive and racist. It’s not funny, it’s not cool. Blackface is easily one of the most offensive Halloween costumes of all time.
Anything from a native or indigenous culture. By this we mean not dressing as a native American Indian, a Dashiki, a Geisha, a Maori, a Scot (if you’re not) etc. Indigenous dress, such as tribal wear or kilts, they’re not costumes, they are part of a culture and rich heritage. You may think it looks great, the Glaswegian behind you, may not.Sugar skull. This is an interesting one as sugar skull make-up is currently pretty fashionable. Calavera, otherwise known as sugar skull makeup, is associated with Día de los Muertos, or the Day of the Dead. You’ve seen Spectre, right? The Mexican spiritual holiday is a celebration of loved ones who have passed away, so you need to be careful what you’re messing with. Anything Arabian. We often use Arab, and Arabian as catch-all terms which dismisses cultural differences between Middle Eastern people. Feelings are running high at the moment, and Islamophobia is real. You may think your costumes is funny, someone with direct experience of fundamentalism and terrorism will not. Alternatively, you may just be guilty of discrimination, racism or bad taste. Don’t do it. “Anna Rexia” A Halloween costume depicting an eating disorder. Ouch. Hunter/Animal costumes. There have been a few hunter/animal costumes around recently. You know, the kind that depict a dentist as a hunter with a lion trophy. Or you can get a Cecil the Lion costume. There’s also been a “Sexy Harambe” costume (he was the gorilla involved when the child fell into his enclosure. Harambe was shot and killed, and this caused controversy). It’s not cute, it’s not sexy, it’s not fun.
What would you consider costumes on the cusp?I read somewhere that the most offensive Halloween costume would be a zombie version of a recently deceased celebrity, and I’ll buy that to a certain extent. How soon is too soon to do a Michael Jackson Thriller Zombie Halloween costume? Maybe too soon for David Bowie or Severus Snape perhaps? Donald Trump. Trump – quite possible the most offensive Halloween costumes of all time. Ah ….. what the hell. Go for it.
This Halloween, why not try to be a little more creative and original? Steer clear of the disturbing Halloween costumes, especially racially or culturally insensitive ones, or those that are topical and tragic.And I have to say that one of my personal favourites is an inflatable penis, which for some reason I don’t find offensive at all. I guess it’s all in the eye of the beholder, but of course you have to ask how offensive it would be if you turned up as a vagina.
Over to you
What do you consider are the most offensive Halloween costumes of all time? Have you ever dressed in something completely offensive and were there repercussions? Send us photos of your Halloween costumes. Join us on Facebook! 🙂