Lil Uzi Vert Defends Diamond Implant Against Cultural Appropriation Backlash
Lil Uzi Vert has pushed back against claims that his diamond implant is an example of cultural appropriation.
The rapper has been making headlines all week after he revealed he had implanted a giant pink diamond in the middle of his forehead, and while reactions have generally ranged from confused to weirdly impressed, there’s also been a bit of a backlash against his new look.
Now, Lil Uzi has been forced to deny the implant is a form of cultural appropriation, after some social media users claimed the diamond mimicked the traditional Bindis often seen in South Asian culture.
The criticism began after the rapper, who has spent the past few days answering questions from fans about the implant and its inspiration, posted a series of images on his Instagram story of what appear to be Bollywood actors dressed in traditional Indian attire and wearing Bindis.
The images caused some Twitter users to question whether Lil Uzi was culturally appropriating Indian culture, with one user posting ‘Where r all the people saying cultural appropriation? I guess it doesn’t matter when it’s asian cultures. [sic]’ After another person replied saying the implant was an example of ‘cultural appreciation,’ the user went on to say, ‘I mean taking a symbol of spirituality and turning it into a sign of wealth?? What the health? 24mil for that ugly thing?’
The argument clearly caught the rapper’s attention, and in a tweet he denied that he had culturally appropriated the Bindi with his diamond implant, saying ‘glad to see you sharing your thoughts and knowledge…but I’m not mimicking anything I know about a lot and love different forms of art… do you even know where the images is from?’ before adding ‘Honestly… I love y’all.’
Unsurprisingly the claims have caused a fair bit of debate among Lil Uzi’s fans. While some have claimed that the rapper posted the images to prove that forehead jewellery isn’t as unusual as people think, other’s have defended him against the criticism, with one fan posting ‘I’m Indian, and people saying this is appropriating culture is really f**king ridiculous when its just foreigners getting mad at someone for us when we’re completely ok w it. ask someone irl if they think any of this is wrong and they’ll respond w no.’
Another person pointed out that Lil Uzi’s implant has a crucial difference to traditional Bindis, commenting on Instagram that most people don’t get their Bindis ‘permaglued to their skull.’
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