Fort Bragg's "stereotypical" Black History Month menu: Does it make you angry or just hungry?

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Photo via Gawker

Gawker knocked Fort Bragg’s special Black History Month meal of fried chicken, pigs feet, ham hocks and collard greens, saying “all the stereotypical foods are represented.”

Many of the commenters on the original Gawker post did not seem outraged. Should they have been? Does offering soul food reinforce stereotypes or recognize a cultural contribution?

[Note: I hate to have to say this, but if the comments are offensive,  they’ll never be approved.]

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11 Comments

  1. It is stereotyping any more that having a Luau to represent Hawaiian, or serving egg rolls, and chow mein for a chinese theme…It is just a historical theme…FYI the chow hall/DFAC do serve these items several times a year. Southern cooking or Soul food is just that…why does everything have to be p.c. or scrutinized. Can there be some traditions, some enjoyment, and can a menu be just a menu. Like the first poster said..that is most the home cookin’ restaurant’s in NC around the Fort Bragg… it is just a menu..:o(

  2. How is this stereotyptical? Out of the 20 items listed on the menu, I enjoy and eat on a regular basis about 15 of them. Nobody would mistake me for a black person. Most of my family also enjoy these items. Somehow these foods got labled as “black food.” Everybody forgets that these items are typically cheaper to buy. But there were plenty and still are plenty of lower income white people and other races also. Would this become stereotypical of “poor white” people too?

  3. How did southern mountain cooking become known as “Soul Food”? This is the same food that I grew up eating in the Blue Ridge Mountains of VA. It’s as much my culture as theirs and I’m just a simple white hillbilly.

  4. Yes, I believe this menu reinforced sterotypes because it makes it seem as if “all” black people eat like this. I am a black female and 95% of the things on this menu I wouldn’t dare eat. This menu does not represent me at all. I eat more healthier than this. I thank God they wasn’t bold enough to throw the mother of all black folk stereotyped meals on the menu which are “chitterlings”. I believe the military need to get rid of these dining facility menu’s in which they think represent a race as a whole. Food shouldn’t be part of the Military Race/Heritage theme in my opinion. The focus of the military heritage months should be teaching a good curriculum to all races that help dispell myths about fellow servicemen/women of another race. By the way, I never ate over a black relative or friend home in my 40 years of living and seen them cooking “Fried Rice”. It appears we don’t even know the traditional foods that even need to be on this menu.

  5. I don’t see it as stereotyping. It is celebrating and southern. I would be like saying serving lasagna at an Italian festival is stereotypical. It is not! It is celebrating food of our heritage and sharing it with some that may not have had it. That is what it is about..sharing.

  6. Please… it’s a menu that represents history… and these foods are the items that many people of all races and religions enjoyed.
    Get over yourselves and enjoy!

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