Although RCTA is not exactly a trend that’s been followed by many recently, the acronym has been highlighted on TikTok, gaining over 5.8 million views.
While most viral trends on TikTok mean no malice, occasionally, there emerges one controversial trend like this one that ends up disrespecting certain groups of people.
Yet the majority of users are unfamiliar with the term. @kyamewa recently explained the meaning of RCTA and how it’s problematic. RCTA is short for race change to another.
There’s another alternative to the term called ECTA, meaning ethnicity change to another.
Allegedly, the term was coined by @fr0sty_bears on TikTok. The members of this community don’t necessarily seek to change their appearance to look like their targeted race. Rather, they believe they can change their DNA by manifesting and subliminal. They claim that they don't intend to cause any harm.
This new wave of RCTA is mainly focused on transitioning into South-Asian ethnicities due to their obsession with K-pop, K-dramas, and anime culture.
User @kyamewa, among many others, strongly criticized this community and found them to be extremely ignorant, offensive, and racist.
How is the RCTA community different from the transracial community?
@kyamewa went on to elucidate the definition of RCTA in their video. They said it’s similar to the concept of being transracial.
Transracial means identifying as a different race than what one was originally born into. But the RCTA-identifying people go one step ahead and believe themselves to be more educated than transracial people. They claim to learn and cultivate more about the language and inner culture of the race they want to transition into.
The TikToker said that it still doesn’t make the entire thing any good. They shared their own experience as an actual Korean person to rationalize why racial transition is wrong on so many counts.
The user talked about moving to Canada around seven years ago when they were in fourth grade. They were bullied in school for their race. When they were enrolled in the English Second Language program, they were looked down upon as the kid who could not speak English.
They also opened up about how people asserting on changing their race or ethnicity never had to experience the struggles of minorities, since they don’t originally fall under the community.
Wanting to transition to a different race just because people like pop culture or what modern culture is trending these days could be harmful. This is because the RCTA groups don’t know what it’s like to be a part of an ethnicity that has been discriminated against for years.
The user expressed how it’s harmful even if one wants to change to the white race.
@kyamewa elaborated on how denying one’s original racial identity reflects being ashamed of their race. And one cannot essentially change their ethnicity just because they don’t take pride in it or a different race interests them more.
Their video explaining the term has over 33,000 views as of this writing.
How internet personalities have promoted ECTA subculture
Oli London, a British internet personality and singer who was born Caucasian, has undergone 32 different surgeries to look Korean. Oli wanted to look like his K-pop idol, Jimin from BTS.
In a recent YouTube documentary series, Oli said:
“I’m Korean. Now people need to accept that.”
Former president of the NAACP chapter Rachel Dolezal tricked the world into believing that she was a black woman until her white biological parents outed her in 2015.