Yet none of them seemed aware either of the irony that they were literally appropriating womanhood, or that if museums got rid of those artifacts, only their Euro-centric, or non-diverse collections would be on display, which would also be perceived as problematic.
The five men, each well-coiffed in wigs, with full makeup, elegant gowns, heels, and jewelry bemoan the existence of African artifacts in American museums as "entitled" and culturally appropriative, not realizing for a single second that they, as drag queens, as men dressed up as women, are appropriating the culture of women's beauty, fashion, and femininity.
"I just feel like there's such a long-rooted history of appropriation from black culture," said one queen. "Like for instance, like when I go to the Metropolitan Museum, and I see things that they've taken from Africa, I see things that they've taken from Nubia—"
He was met with resounding affirmations from his fellow queens, all of whom also appeared to not have the least inkling that as they were complaining about the "appropriation" of artifacts they are appropriating, personifying without respect, and taking possession of women's culture, and colonizing women's bodies.
Interestingly, they were speaking with derision about the most storied and elegant art museum in the United States exhibiting artifacts from cultures around the world. The Met shows these artifacts to give visitors to the museum a glimpse into the lives, practices, and artworks of cultures in far off places, places to which many Americans will never have the privilege of visiting.
Should the Met have offered no artifacts from anywhere other than the United States, would that have made the men more or less angry? Do they want to only see artifacts and art works from what they would undoubtedly call "white America"?
Just as another man chimed in to complain about the "Cultural artifacts," it was clear that none of them were thinking about the Met's responsibility to show a diverse collection of art and artifacts.
"And then you go and you look at these pillars, and then there's this white man, Samuel Something-something, 1800, going and saying 'I'm putting my ownership on something that was never mine to begin with" The first queen continued ranting.
"Discovered," another said.
"'I discovered it, so then it gives me this ownership, so I can take it and it can be mine,'" he said, imitating the imaginary Samuel Something-something. "And I feel like it's that entitlement that is one thing that we really need to discuss. Like there is a way to very much so appreciate somebody's culture, but so many times, like Bob says, they cite the source, but they don't."
As the 5 men complained about the Met not showing enough deference to black culture, they sat mocking the culture of women's beauty, and they appeared to have no self-awareness at all, despite the countless hours they must have spent on hair and make-up.