"What is so complicated when it comes to black culture, the line between cultural appropriation and cultural exchange is always going to be blurred. But here's the thing: Appropriation occurs when a style leads to racist generalizations or stereotypes where it originated but is deemed as high-fashion, cool, or funny when the privileged take it for themselves. Appropriation occurs when the appropriator is not aware of the deep significance of the culture that they are partaking in. Hip hop stems from a Black struggle, it stems from jazz and blues, styles of music which African-Americans created to retain humanity in the face of adversity."
Unsurprisingly, Billboard Music, a well-known international publication covering the music business reduced her poignant, educated message to one of immaturity and anger as they tweeted, "Hunger Games" star Amandla Stenberg criticized Taylor Swift and Madonna for "rampant" appropriation of Black culture." However, the 16 year old response was as inspiring as her original message (tweets shown below.) Again, as we often do on this blog: block out the negativity and noise to pay attention to the lesson at hand. Amandla Stenberg asks a question that has been asked on social media for years now: