Is Planking Racist?

The Blogosphere and the Twitterverse are all in a tizzy over the latest controversy regarding planking. Turns out that not only is it lame and can possibly lead to a Darwin Award-winning death, but now there are accusations that the trend is racist. I know, right?

All of this candy hit the fan when rapper Xhibit, who we all know as the host of Pimp My Ride and as the star of the ubiquitous 'Yo Dawg!' meme:

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...took to his Twitter account to inform all of his followers about planking's racist origins. Here’s the tweet that started the whole uproar.

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In a matter of minutes, the planking cavalcade came out to defend the meme, getting into it with the rapper Via Twitter. Seriously? Why would you defend planking so vigorously? EVER. But especially under these circumstances. If someone told me that something I was doing was rooted in one of the most heinous atrocities in world history...you better damned well believe I would at the very least take pause and look into it first. But hey, I'm crazy like that! Xzibit shot back.

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Now, Xzibit isn’t the first person to make this accusation. In late June, a blogger named Courtney Luv (which I admit doesn’t sound like someone I would want to rely on for educating me on anything) laid out some intriguing evidence, including eerie illustrations showing the interiors of slave ships, where victims were in positions very much like modern day planking. 

Weird.

Now, whether you think planking has racist origins or not, I think we can all agree that the people participating in the viral sensation just seem to be having fun. And I'm pretty sure they are not intending to do anything that would be interpreted as racist. Although I'm baffled by the trend, I'll admit it is pretty funny to see an old broad struggling to keep afloat on top of some kind of...slot-machine?

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And I'm pretty sure the parents of this baby didn't think they were being racist...they were just being really irresponsible parents.

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That being said, if it turns out people who are more expert than Courtney Luv and Xzibit say that planking does indeed seem to have originated from the slave trade…then I think this trend needs to go bye bye. But then again I’m not really a fan so I wouldn't miss it. On this fact I am definitely down with Xzibit.

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But I am definitely not down with him on this statement:

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You'll always be my Yo Dawg, Dawg! But you raise an interesting point. And because I like thinking, I'm gonna stick that interesting idea in my brain and think about it.

What do you think of all the uproar? Is planking racist? Or just stupid? Let’s discuss serious issues in the comments!

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