The 30-year-old model causes a storm after telling fans about an 'oriental dressing option' during a flight...
Chrissy Teigen found herself embroiled in a huge Twitter debate yesterday.
It all started when the 30-year-old model Tweeted about the use of the word ‘oriental’ on an aeroplane menu.
She told fans: ‘I really really really really clearly am not a PC type of gal but I’m a little weirded out at the oriental dressing option on my flight.’
Chrissy – who’s half Thai – continued: ‘Like if you’re over 50 you can call me oriental to my face but this is a new menu and I’m not a rug.’
But when asked if she found the word offensive, she said: ‘Not offensive, really. Just weird. Old school. Just say Asian.’
And that’s where things really kicked off.
Clarifying her point, she said: ‘Them saying “oriental” makes no impact on me. I know that, most of the time, their intention is not to hurt.
‘For instance, you can call my mother Siamese. Thailand was Siam. But yeah. A little weird now.’
However, some of her followers responded by telling her the term is a slur – and that she should be offended.
One wrote: ‘It might not be offensive to her but it’s considered offensive to many. It perpetuates cultural ignorance.’
Another said: ‘@chrissyteigen sorry, but they are correct. ‘oriental’ is pejorative/derogatory when its used to describe people from Asia.’
Sign up for the newsletter
Get news, competitions and special offers direct to your inbox
This led the mum-of-one to say: ‘It’s not a slur, though. It’s just a bit of forgivable ignorance [sic],’ before adding: ‘I’ve never come across anyone who used it as a slur. Maybe when paired with an adjective, yes. Ignorance without malice isn’t something I can be offended by.’
She then hit out: ‘I really appreciate all the non-Asians telling me what is offensive to Asians, though. Thank you. Writing it all down.’
However, when a follower Tweeted her: ‘”Oriental” is adj. for goods/merchandise – offensive when applied to people,’ she replied: ‘So many people writing me this but no, it is not. Lol. This is a new, made up definition I guess.’
And when someone told her that they ‘didn’t realise she was Asian’ and that she ‘rarely ever talks about it’, she was NOT impressed.
She ranted: ‘So your objective here is to get me to stop speaking on what is an “Asian issue” because i don’t speak on “Asian issues”? [sic].
‘Except i work and donate thousands to a charity whose primary goal is to stop the southeast Asian sex trade. Or have 45 pages of my book devoted to my thai background.
‘Or the show where I explored thailand. Or my well-documented thai mother who lives with me. Yeah. I don’t claim Asian enough.’
Trying to clear things up, she said: ‘I think our miscommunication here is the fact we have different definitions of the word “offensive,”‘ before adding: ‘But thank you for reminding me why Twitter can be insufferable. I was getting too comfy enjoying it and all.’
What are your thoughts on the debate? Let us know over on Twitter @lookmagazine.