How to move forward? First, recognize the history of economic appropriation that makes possible cultural appropriation. Without such a recognition, we will continue to fight the wrong battle. Though it has been important for political progress in this country to organize around cultures and identities, these types of struggles won’t fundamentally change how some people benefit from an economic system built on racial discrimination and many others don’t.
You can read the full essay at the LA Times: Cultural Appropriation: It’s About More than Pho and Sombreros, by Viet Thanh Nguyen.