Artist and activist Gregg Deal recently shared a post on Facebook where he pointed out a Czech Cycling company's blatant cultural appropriation and misinformation on Native Americans. The post was so shocking that it rippled out into a viral share, prompting the company to remove it's social media sites after thousands of people called them out on their appropriation.
Read the original Facebook post here.
The next week, Deal wrote and published an Op-ed on cultural appropriation and cycling..
“I'm a cyclist. I’m also an Indigenous person, a member of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe, and a professional artist. My bike is my modern day war pony, and part of my complex identity in this country. It is my love of the bike, coupled with my Indigenous identity, that found me dismayed by something displayed at the Eurobike Expo last month in Germany.
Among the many new products, new models, and new companies, one stuck out to my Indigenous eyes. Czech bike brand Apache Bicycles promoted their new mountain bikes and electric bikes with branding that was both shocking and cheap. From tipis (yes, tipis, not teepees) to large photographs of our old ones stylized to fit their branding, what really went beyond the pale — pun completely intended — was the two blond haired European women decked out in stereotypical “war paint” and the kind of “Pocahottie” costume you can find in any Party City at your local strip mall.”
The article continues to explain the exact reasons why the Apache Bicycles company was in the wrong. It's an article that is well worth the read, especially if you have friends who do not understand the hard cultural appropriation causes.
Read Gregg Deal's Op-Ed here.
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