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Episode 122 — Luchadores Party


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#1 Earwolf Admin

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Posted 03 April 2013 - 11:00 PM

Andrew Ti and guest Milana Vayntrub give their opinions on whether a luchadores themed party is racist or not. Plus, they talk about how the Facebook generation is too passive and why changing your profile picture isn’t enough to make a change. Stand up for yourself and leave us a message at (323) 389-RACE.

#2 Shariq Torres

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 07:59 AM

Damn, this was a good conversation. Andrew is right, it's not anyone's job to change/convert your racist (and/or lazy) ass. Google is your friend.

#3 .....

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 09:35 AM

Dressing up like luchadores is not okay whether you're in Mexican culture or American culture. It's mockery/cultural appropriation from the warrior traditions of the Aztecs/Mayans that weren't being practiced just to entertain people.

#4 Shariq Torres

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 12:16 PM

View PostJoshie, on 04 April 2013 - 09:35 AM, said:

Dressing up like luchadores is not okay whether you're in Mexican culture or American culture. It's mockery/cultural appropriation from the warrior traditions of the Aztecs/Mayans that weren't being practiced just to entertain people.


So, it's not just for entertainment value? I thought that the masks were a part of the pageantry of wrestling, sort like how wrestlers in the U.S. have a long tradition of wearing capes and face paint. Maybe I should take my own advice and Google it.

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 03:04 PM

View PostShariq Torres, on 04 April 2013 - 12:16 PM, said:

So, it's not just for entertainment value? I thought that the masks were a part of the pageantry of wrestling, sort like how wrestlers in the U.S. have a long tradition of wearing capes and face paint. Maybe I should take my own advice and Google it.

Well, it is done for pageantry/evoking old Gods/animals etc. by the guys wrestling today, yea, but when the Aztecs/Mayans did the ceremonial fighting stuff it was part of their religion. I'm saying there's like two levels to the thievery:

1. Aztec/Mayan indigenous symbols/Jaguar Warriors from the Garland Wars -> Mexican settler culture uses the same themes but just for fighting/wrestling shows (wanting to use ferocious native themes/colors, like the Cleveland Indians or Washington Redskins but in a Mexican context)

2. Mexican culture -> Anglo appropriation

There are some luchadores that aren't trying to do that, and use the masks in the traditional "mysterious guy" role, but it's problematic stuff like "exóticos" who are supposed to be in-the-closet gay dudes that put on the mask and wrestle just to be physical with other guys and get beat up by the good guys

#6 Shariq Torres

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Posted 05 April 2013 - 04:44 AM

View PostJoshie, on 04 April 2013 - 03:04 PM, said:

Well, it is done for pageantry/evoking old Gods/animals etc. by the guys wrestling today, yea, but when the Aztecs/Mayans did the ceremonial fighting stuff it was part of their religion. I'm saying there's like two levels to the thievery:

1. Aztec/Mayan indigenous symbols/Jaguar Warriors from the Garland Wars -> Mexican settler culture uses the same themes but just for fighting/wrestling shows (wanting to use ferocious native themes/colors, like the Cleveland Indians or Washington Redskins but in a Mexican context)

2. Mexican culture -> Anglo appropriation

There are some luchadores that aren't trying to do that, and use the masks in the traditional "mysterious guy" role, but it's problematic stuff like "exóticos" who are supposed to be in-the-closet gay dudes that put on the mask and wrestle just to be physical with other guys and get beat up by the good guys



The first item you spoke about is interesting. Around the the same time as the Black Power movement was the Chicano Pride movement. There was a lot of imagery and language that evoked their Native American lineage. I assumed that this was analogous to members of the Black Power movement taking on African names, wearing traditional West African clothes, and interest in West African religions. It was a way to connect to something that had been cut from you (through slavery or indoctrination) and they were trying to reclaim this part of themselves. Do you think those Chicano Pride members were using this imagery from a place of privilege within Mexican culture? If it was different, can you tell me why?

The second point is the reason why I kinda love wrestling. It is a physical representation of the hopes and fears of working class people in its respective countries. For awhile there was a wrestler in the WWE called Golddust who I think was the most flamboyant wrestler in ages. He was like a white Little Richard. And he was the heel for all of his career. In American wrestling the heels are usually guys with white collar jobs (I.R.S), rich people (The Million Dollar Man, Hunter Hearst Hemly) and educated people (The Professor). The good guys are down-home, good ole boy rednecks (Dusty Rhodes, Bob Backlund, Steve Austin). It just really crazy to see the collective psychic energy of a population being manifest in physical form.

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Posted 05 April 2013 - 02:54 PM

View PostJoshie, on 04 April 2013 - 09:35 AM, said:

Dressing up like luchadores is not okay whether you're in Mexican culture or American culture. It's mockery/cultural appropriation from the warrior traditions of the Aztecs/Mayans that weren't being practiced just to entertain people.

Who cares about what shit traditions some Mayan assholes had? Entertainment has value, and far more than anyone's "warrior traditions."