Brooklyn Beckham Criticized Over His Native American Tattoo
Last weekend, Brooklyn Beckham got a tattoo of a Native American Great Plains chief in a ceremonial headdress on his arm.
Brooklyn's very first ink was, he said on Instagram, a nod to his famous dad, David Beckham, who has the exact same tattoo on his side.
This is all very sweet and everything, but it does beg the question: Why exactly are these Beckham boys, who are neither native nor American, etching images of Great Plains chiefs onto their bodies?
That's the question a lot of people were asking in the comments of Brooklyn's Instagram post, anyway.
The answer, it seems, is pretty clearly "No." The Beckhams are not native.
While a lot people in the comments maintained the "who cares, it's a tattoo" attitude, several native peoples spoke up about why the tattoo bothered them.
One user wrote,
Ignorant white people with no regard for the violent history of indigenous peoples, for genocide that is still perpetuated today by society and government alike. We are not fictional characters from some far away time. We are not sensationalized and generalized images for you to tattoo onto your privileged white arm.
It's called cultural appropriation. I don't appreciate the use of 1) a Great Plains chief and 2) a sacred ceremonial headdress being depicted on the someone who is not native. My people, the Choctaw were beaten. Raped. Starved. Massacred. Stripped of their identity by Europeans. There is nothing fashionable and trendy about that.
And while many came to Brooklyn's defense...
...others felt we should really just let the people who are native voice their concerns.
Look, is this the worst thing white people have done to native people? No, that title belongs to the whole "murdering almost all of them and stealing their land" thing.
But in light of that whole genocide thing, maybe you can see why it'd be a bit annoying for white people to "honor" the people they conquered by using their image for a hipster tattoo.
If you are not native, just try to put yourself in their shoes and look at this tattoo again — I challenge you.