Cosmopolitan veered away from its usual topics of women’s fashion and dating when it published an editorial on Monday regarding an odd subject matter.
The magazine’s website featured an article titled “Maybe Don’t Dress Your Kid Up As Moana This Halloween?”
The editorial urged white parents not to allow their children to dress up as Moana for Halloween — because, as Cosmopolitan puts it, “If your kid wears a racist costume … you’re kind of wearing it too.”
“If your Caucasian son or daughter doesn’t get to be exactly what they wanted for Halloween, encourage them to take a step back and realize that they’re awash in privileges that the real Moanas and Tianas of the world will likely never see, because the world is full of racist a–holes,” the piece states.
Moana is the name and title character of a popular Disney animation movie based on a young Polynesian girl. Released in 2016, the critically acclaimed film became an instant hit with movie-goers and grossed hundreds of millions of dollars at the box office.
Per Cosmopolitan, a white child dressing up as Moana would amount to cultural appropriation and would be an offensive act against young children of Pacific Island descent who, supposedly have no other characters to relate to.
According to the magazine, white children who dress up as an ethnic movie character for Halloween, be it Jasmine from “Aladdin” or Moana herself, are guilty of projecting racism.
“To pretend to be a racial, ethnic, or religious minority when you’re not makes light of their history — and reinforces a deeply problematic power dynamic, wherein white people use, then discard, pieces of cultures they’ve subjugated for centuries just because they can.”
The “onus” falls on the parents, Cosmopolitan says, to teach white children why dressing up as anything else other than a Caucasian character is cultural appropriation and deeply offensive.
Aside from costume policing, the editorial went on to allege that President Donald Trump is a hate group apologist and that his refugee ban was based off racist sentiment.
The blowback to the article on Twitter was swift and harsh.
Critics of the article from right-of-center outlets such as National Review, The Daily Wire and others, have argued that it isn’t racist at all for children to dress as whatever character they please for Halloween.
In fact, Emily Zanotti of The Daily Wire said allowing children to only dress as characters that correspond to their ethnicity is itself racist.
As of the publication of this article, Cosmopolitan has yet to respond to the backlash.