As frustratingly repeated on a regular basis to several White musicians and artists, Black culture is not up for sale or revamping — musically or otherwise.
Enter pop songstress Katy Perry, just one of many celebrities with a mailbox full of cultural appropriation memos, who recently decided to pull out her cornrows and untie her kimono for an open conversation on racism and white privilege. Her name hasn’t been on the fondest side of Black Twitter lately, especially after perplexing commentary on her new haircut with regard to President Barack Obama and an even more puzzling performance with the Culture rap trio Migos.
Conducted with acclaimed Black Lives Matter activist DeRay McKesson, Perry’s discussion aired during her Witness World Wide live stream on Saturday (June 10). And while some of the internet has saluted her initiative to address her problematic cultural appropriation, others still aren't buying it.
I'm proud of Katy for acknowledging her mistakes with cultural appropriation. She's learning pic.twitter.com/uyHd3upmzx— la bella vita (@drugproblem) June 11, 2017
I started #PodSaveThePeople with the goal of discussing activism, race, equity, and solutions with a range of people in a candid way.— deray mckesson (@deray) June 11, 2017
I invited Katy Perry to talk on the podcast b/c of her role on the HRC campaign, how she views her art + activism, & her past re: race.— deray mckesson (@deray) June 11, 2017
And yes, we talk about race, appropriation, what she's doing to grow and learn. And I ask one/two questions about music.— deray mckesson (@deray) June 11, 2017
From what I've seen so far, it looks like two minutes of an hour long interview has been posted #onhere. I'd encourage folks to see it all.— deray mckesson (@deray) June 11, 2017
I appreciate the people who've pushed me either now/before to be thoughtful about how I engage. We might not always agree, but I hear you.— deray mckesson (@deray) June 11, 2017
Katy Perry is apologizing for the Britney Spears joke, her cultural appropriation and she forgave Taylor and y'all still want to hate her pic.twitter.com/zNh54t5wIz— 🅹 (@kxtysboy) June 12, 2017
SHOUT OUT TO KATY PERRY FOR SPREAD INFORMATION ABOUT CULTURAL APPROPRIATION LEARNING FROM HER OWN MISTAKES https://t.co/II4VSfc00a— Come to mama (@PerryAbruz) June 11, 2017
katy literally owned up to her mistakes and admitted to being ignorant and you guys still have something negative to say.... pic.twitter.com/UCyAYCfwsr— j (@jxstinvalle) June 11, 2017
The tea is Katy Perry apologized for her cultural appropriation and not a lot of artists have the guts to admit that. WOKE QUEEN— Katheryn Hudson ❤️ (@risethrive) June 11, 2017
It's amazing that Katy Perry had time to learn her mistakes in cultural appropriation the same week she was releasing an album.— David S. (@AE_DavidS) June 11, 2017
katy perry: I'm a woman in my 30's who just learned why cultural appropriation is wrong I had no idea pls don't be mean to me— farwz (@farwzz) June 11, 2017
Hi, my name is Katy Perry and I have not made my entire career off the backs of LGBT and cultural appropriation pic.twitter.com/65EXAopYts— Kayla/Marie(a)🏳️🌈 (@Maria_Giesela) June 11, 2017
She's sitting up here literally saying "don't yell at me, i'm learning" but its not up to poc to hold white peoples hand in all this.— LA MIRI 🥑 (@abstracthoe) June 11, 2017
Don't sit up here and tell me that in june 2017 we gotta hold your hand when this is something we been saying for years.— LA MIRI 🥑 (@abstracthoe) June 11, 2017
Why is Katy Perry having a conversation with Deray about appropriating WOMEN of color cultures. That's not how this works— Misogynoir Slayer (@TheQueenSpeaks_) June 11, 2017
Katy Perry on Cultural Appropriation: pic.twitter.com/cye6gqRdef— David Lo Pun-ch Nazi (@helpmeskeletor) June 12, 2017
Katy Perry is 32 and Google is free. She knew better but cultural appropriation made her rich. But now it's not working, so she apologize.— Betsey Bell Devoe (@Myrtle_Urkel) June 11, 2017
Katy Perry. Sitting down w Deray. To have a discussion on cultural appropriation and "how clapbacks hurt".— moe (they/them) (@moepriester) June 11, 2017
Laughter isn't even the word. https://t.co/EPP6tBwcq3
Katy Perry can't wear braids because she is white, braids are black peoples culture, black People can be born with blonde/white hair. https://t.co/KgvCfU2NQR— leah🥂 (@donthurtyurseIf) June 13, 2017
If Katy Perry was serious about dealing w/ her history of cultural appropriation she would have spoken w/ ppl whose culture she used ie BW— Victoria (@meditationxvii) June 12, 2017
What business does a BM have even being the one talking to Katy perry about the shit she steals from BW and WoC— Yessica Haircut 🙃 (@KillaKamWasHere) June 11, 2017
Katy Perry is acting like a victim, making who the guilty ones again? Black women!— Eniola Hundeyin (@EniolaHu) June 13, 2017
Not today sis.
TL today:— tiredt. (@itsottwall) June 11, 2017
Katy Perry: I understand now. I didn't know! 😭
White ppl: She's sorry & learning! Accept this!
Black women and queer ppl: pic.twitter.com/eHAl2lGOV4
(Photo: Michael Tran/FilmMagic)