Sunday, June 01, 2008

Now that the New York Times has covered it, is the "jihadi chic latté" controversy over?

On Friday, the New York Times covered the Rachael Ray/Dunkin' Donuts/Kufiya thing.

What I find interesting about the report is that there was an internet backlash against the backlash spawned by Rachael Ray. As the Times puts it:

"From there, a backlash to the backlash started to take hold.

An item about the controversy had more than 2,300 votes and 830 comments on Digg, a news aggregation site. A YouTube video, “Rachael Ray Is a Terrorist,” poked fun at the situation, with the narrator saying, “Yes, because when I look at Rachael Ray I think 9/11.” That video drew more than 2,300 comments, and a related story on The Huffington Post had more than 1,200 comments."

For the record, The Huffington Post, to date, has FIVE posts dealing with the Dunkin' Donuts terrorist scarf. Here's a list:

1. "Wednesday night on 'Countdown,' Keith Olbermann [MSNBC] declared Dunkin' Donuts his "Worst Person in the World" for caving to the lunatic fringe..." Check out the video.

2. A post from Gershom Gorenberg: "[Daniel] Pipes, Michelle Malkin, [Pam] Geller et al should pay attention: The words alcohol , algebra and algorism are all really Arabic. They are proof of a nefarious Islamic plot to destroy Western society." When Gorenberg first read about the hullabaloo, he thought it was an item from The Onion.

3. From Daoud Kuttab: "Turning a centuries old symbol of a proud people into a claim of terrorism is unacceptable to the millions of people around the world who proudly wear the keffiya."

4. The original post with, to date, 1498 comments.

5. From Erin Kotecki Vest. She calls it Dunkin' Donuts' "Freedom Fries" moment.

Whew! Anyone else tired of this?

But wait, check out the comments on wayneandwax, to a post that linked to my post on Dunkin' Donuts and Grand Theft Auto, and in particular this one, from theantisuck:

"Back in high school, the only kids I knew rocking the keffiyeh were involved w/ or supported the US pro-palistine movement, the kind of kids who would wear similarly slightly controvercial military gear like army jackets and, yes, Che shirts. I knew a lot of radical youngins who wore them, some second generation arab kids and a bunch of white kids too.

Now I think its sort of a popularization of that MIA chic - graffiti/militant/bright colors etc I see it a lot in nyc in day-glo colors by a lot of hipsters & a TON of black youth - that not just fashion. I do think theres an interesting aesthetic and cultural link between gangster rapper and PLO chic glorification / perception of violence in america.

the keffiyeh, not worn across the middle east but very native to the gulf, the heartland, & it has been politicized, not first by westerners but by radicals themselves, why else would say, berber militants choose to wear it when its almost as foreign to see on heads in the streets in Casablanca as it is here. I pity the avereage gulf man who now gets a political association for wearing his normal clothing. But that association was not just made by americans, but mulsims across the world who see it everyday on aljazeera reporting in palistine.

soooo Quadir Habeeb vs. Rachael Ray? Ray’s use almost bothers me more b/c its just simple cultural appropriation. Habeeb’s use is more offensive but more interesting and politicaly engaging."

"Jihadi chic latté"?--courtesy wayneandwax.

1 comment:

Polydora said...

Enjoying the Dunkin'/Kufiya/Rachael Ray string of blogs.

How are things in Israel?