Oh what to be for Halloween, a Sexy Nun or a Native American? Too many choices. | Teen Ink

Oh what to be for Halloween, a Sexy Nun or a Native American? Too many choices.

June 5, 2023
By Anonymous

Walking down the aisles of Spirit Halloween looking for a costume can be very daunting especially when you're looking last minute the day before to wear to a Halloween costume party. Seeing all the options, before you thought you were a pretty decisive person, you can choose what you want in a reasonable time but in Spirit Halloween. You become the most indecisive person ever. You see costumes ranging from Pikachu to a clown, a sexy nun to a police officer, and a Native American to a blue M&M. It’s shocking the costumes you see in the aisle, some aren’t even costumes because it's what people actually wear for their culture or religion. 

Adults dressing up as nuns isn’t always the issue, it crosses the line when they wear stilettos, thongs, fishnet tights, and garter belts paired with the Benedictine habit. What Nuns wear is a devotion to their worship, not a costume for people to wear and modify to get attention from people or to get free drinks at the bar. People sexualizing the Benedictine Nun cause issues in the Catholic community. Sister Gilmary Kay of the Religious Sisters of Mercy believes “It’s such an offense against goodness and sacredness. Not only do such costumes denigrate each woman who is a religious sister, but they also denigrate God”. People continuing to choose to dress up as Nuns will only continue to put out the sexual and offensive image. 

Halloween costumes can offend and degrade cultures and races but can also appropriate and hurt religion by putting a harmful image out like wearing Ribbon skirts and Breechcloth and headdresses as costumes to a Halloween party for likes on Instagram. According to Henu Josephine Tarrant, a New York-based artist, and performer of the Ho-Chunk, Hopi, and Rappahannock tribes, “The costumes depict Indigenous people as a monolith frozen in time. It really is a reflection of how we look to [non-Native Americans] and what we are to them. And the style is based on clothes worn during a violent time in the 19th century as white settlers moved west, displacing Indigenous people on the land”. Dressing up as Native Americans will only continue to hurt them because the costumes people put on for likes have significant, traditional, and spiritual meaning to them. The ribbon skirts represent resilience, survival, and identity and the headdresses symbolize leadership. Wearing their traditional outfits as costumes takes away the symbolizing identity they have fought hard and long for and that is why it is not ok anymore to dress up as Native Americans for Halloween.

October is coming up in the next few months so for the ones who go all out or the ones who wait until the last minute for a Halloween costume for a party or trick or treating, just remember. Your costumes shouldn’t continue to put out a bad and dehumanizing image by appropriating someone's identity or religion or culture or sexualizing a group of people. Think about someone or something that you care very deeply about being portrayed negatively. The pain and frustration you feel because they have been harmed for years that they couldn’t escape from because of something that they couldn’t control or stop.

Similar Articles


This article has 0 comments.