Two items, the first of which comes via Reading The Score:
At various American universities, college students have been told to avoid certain types of costumes for this coming Halloween, such as "cowboys", "Indians", "anything involving a sombrero", "white trash", "geisha", "squaw", "ghetto" or "hillbilly", for the reason that these and others might (gasp!) offend somebody. When I was a college student, some of my male friends dressed up in female garb, and vice versa. The whole cross-dressed bunch of them then ate dinner together at campus dining hall. I guess that such a stunt today would be banned for fear of offending transvestites. Meanwhile, I dressed up as a punk rocker, with the help of a gal who gave me paper clip for my ear. This, of course, was much less painful than using a safety pin, as real punk rockers used to do back then. In any event, read the story at The Telegraph.
Meanwhile, dancer and singer Julianne Hough caused an internet "uproar" and later apologized for her choice of Halloween costume. She and a bunch of friends attended a party dressed as characters from the TV show Orange Is The New Black, with herself as Crazy Eyes, who is played by a black actress. (Oops, did I just offend someone by using the suffix "-ess"?) In doing so, Hough darkened her face and tied her hair in knots, just like the character. In my opinion, she didn't look like a black woman, but like a white woman who has spent too much time in the tanning booth. The one time I darkened my skin for Halloween was part of a coal miner costume. The dark makeup was intended to imitate coal dust, not melanin. But now, perhaps even a coal-faced miner might offend somebody. Read the story at the New York Daily News and judge for yourself.