Josh Welch, a 17-year-old from Silver Spring, Maryland made a statement about whiteness on Tuesday when he shared a photo on his Twitter account of his Culture Day outfit.
The photo is of Welch dressed in all black, pictured with a friend and the caption reads, “dressed like a thief for culture day bc white people steal everyone else’s culture.”
dressed like a thief for culture day bc white people steal everyone else’s culture pic.twitter.com/XnY4juY9fh
— welch’s grape juice (@jotswa_welch) October 5, 2016
Of course, no one is safe when critiquing whiteness or calling out cultural appropriation, so people took to Twitter to express their anger over Welch’s photo. One Twitter user wrote, “You kidding me? Are you saying that Italians have no culture? The Greeks? The French? The Spanish? The Dutch? You are ignorant.”
Welch told BuzzFeed the idea came to him while trying to decide how to poke fun at “white culture” for Culture Day.
He said, “The idea just happened to dawn on me, and I knew I had to do it,” adding, “Being a huge advocate for social justice, I was excited to come to school and participate in some grassroots activism.”
Welch’s commentary on white people stealing everyone else’s culture was just in time for Columbus Day, which some have pushed to change to Indigenous People’s Day.
Isn’t Columbus, in some ways, one of the original perpetrators of white people stealing from others? For instance, when he “discovered” the “New World.”
Welch noted, “I have received replies calling me racist and even berating the actual costume, but most responses were positive.”
White people seem to have a lot of trouble understanding reverse racism, so here goes: It’s not real.