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Becky G Gets Called Out For Cultural Appropriation And Latinx Twitter Users Have Thoughts

The hashtag #HowDoMexicansTalk is trending on Twitter as social media users squabble about Becky G and J-Hope’s new song “Chicken Noodle Soup”. The trilingual song —an homage to the early 2000’s hit by DJ Webstar and Young B (who now goes by Bianca Bonnie), featuring AG aka The Voice of Harlem— sent Twitter into a frenzied debate on cultural appropriation and whether or not Becky G is putting on a ‘blaccent’.

The “Chicken Noodle Soup” remake sparked a heated conversation around cultural appropriation on Twitter, and the Latinx community had stuff to say. 

The much-anticipated collab between Becky G and K-pop singer J-Hope, resulted in a big Billboard Social 50 gain for Becky and has racked up over 50 million views in just 5 days. The 2006 hit remake even started a whole dance challenge after J-Hope shared a video of himself recreating the choreography on TikTok, millions of fans followed suit, posting their own videos with the hashtag #CNSChallenge. But the new “Chicken Noodle Soup” also sparked a heated conversation on cultural appropriation in the Latinx community online.

It’s not the first time BTS’ J-Hope is involved in a debate about appropriating other cultures.

credit instagram @bts_jhope

J-Hope himself has been the subject of criticism for cultural appropriation around one of the hairstyles he sported towards the end of the video. In most of the video of “Chicken Noodle Soup”, J-Hope rocks his natural hair with blonde highlights, but during the second half, he wears a twisted hairstyle that many believe resembled dreadlocks. It’s not the first time the BTS star finds himself involved in debates of this nature —especially given K-pop’s already fraught history with appropriating black culture. 

One twitter used called the song “anti-black” and accused Becky G of using a ‘blaccent’.

credit twitter @rudeboiluna

On this occasion however, the subject of debate and heated comments was ‘Sin Pijama’ singer Becky G. One outspoken account on black Latinx issues called the song “anti-black” and accused the Mexican-American singer of using a “Caribbean blaccent.” “La Mala” or @rudeboiluna, questioned Becky G’s Spanish accent in a tweet that went viral: “Non-black people of color cannot survive without appropriating black diaspora,” she wrote.

Other twitter users were quick to disagree with “La mala” and so, the rhetorical question ‘How do Mexicans talk’ started to trend as part of the debate, questioning whether there’s only one ‘correct’ way for Mexicans to speak Spanish. When asked, “La mala” responded: “like a Mexican. tf.”

Thousands of commenters asked “How are we supposed to sound in order to be legitimized as Mexican-American?”

The hashtag was a response to Luna’s argument that all Mexicans should sound the same given that Mexico has a population of nearly 130 million and is a multicultural nation that greatly identifies as ‘mestizo’ given that it’s composed of many ethnic groups complete with their own different languages. Another user asked “How do you think Mexicans sound? Do you think we [go] buRRito and tAcO all the time?”  Luna replied, perhaps in poor taste, perhaps just making light of her own ignorance, “yea lol.”

credit Twitter @jin_butterfly

@rudeboiluna’s account has since been suspended following the heated tweets on behalf of BTS’ loyal army and the Mexican community who defended their views. Thousands of Latinx commenters chimed into the argument, a debate that greatly asked: “How are we supposed to sound in order to be legitimized as Mexican-American?”. The fact is that no one’s ethnic identity needs to be legitimized by anyone. No one has the right to invalidate another person’s cultural identity or expressions. 

“You don’t look Latina” or “You don’t even speak Spanish, “are some remarks that second- and third-generation-born American Latinos hear way too often. 

credit Twitter @somexicans

Becky G is part of a troupe of Latinx artists who have been questioned for not “looking” Latino enough, or “sounding” Latino enough. The actor and singer, has shut down the ignorant claims many times before, most famously in an essay published on Popsugar.com: 

“You don’t look Latina” or “You don’t even speak Spanish.” These are the remarks that us second- and third-generation-born American Latinos often hear. The truth is, the lack of language knowledge does not lessen the Latin blood running through our veins or the stories our last names carry. There is no “look” to the passion Latinos carry within them. Although my Spanish is flawed and I didn’t grow up in Mexico, I take pride in my roots. My family’s history and the fact that all the traditions and morals passed down have shaped me to be who I am today is what it means to be a second-generation-born Mexican-American for me.”

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