[SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Things that don't belong anywhere else. (Check first).

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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby PictureSarah » Tue Jul 26, 2011 6:44 pm UTC

I've been called a spic with seriousness only once, by some kid in Revere who was threatening to throw a pumpkin (it was October, and there were pumpkins on porches all over the place) at me. I was walking with my boyfriend (now husband), and just sort of turned to him bemusedly and said "...how does he know?" (I have Mexican heritage and a Spanish last name, but look and identify pretty much anglomutt).
Sometimes at work I have families that have a pretty big problem with bigotry. One dad went on a rant about President Obama being a "half-breed," among other things. Another dad was a white supremacist who (not even jokingly) wanted to name the baby after Adolf Hitler, and said some less-than-awesome things about Jews, Latinos, and various other groups. Oddly, the anti-semitic remarks hit me even harder than the anti-Latino remarks, because my husband is jewish. Hearing someone think that the idea of exterminating a group of which my husband is a part hurt a little more than hearing that someone might not like me based on my heritage. Oddly, I don't think he ever fully recognized that my last name was Mexican (Spanish, actually, but my paternal grandfather was from Mexico), even though we spoke, signed the same documents, and met several times.

Sorry for meandering thoughts, I did not actually have a point.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby clockworkmonk » Tue Jul 26, 2011 8:02 pm UTC

the things I know for certain are that my dad has German heritage and other while my mom has Hispanic( known Spanish, mexican, cuban, other). The simple fact is that I don't know and cannot find out much about the racial history of my family for a variety of reasons, chief being that I have a great grandpa who apparently came from no where and would give no history outside of that. The end result is that I am vaguely brownish. I know for a fact that people have thought I was Chinese.

So for me, race has personally always been a trait that has lead to bemusement, as any other reaction seemed to be more trouble than it was worth.

just sharing some of my history and feelings about race.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby el_loco_avs » Wed Jul 27, 2011 10:00 pm UTC

^ I recognize that being half-white and have people just come up with random races for you is annoying and amusing at times.

I make a point of remembering all the randomness. I heard close to 10 different wrong guesses I think. Oddly despite the Netherlands fairly large Surinam population only once or twice have people guessed me to be half-Surinam (which still doesn't say anything about race but whatever).
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby podbaydoor » Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:23 pm UTC

Years ago, a boy managed to basically go through every country in Asia and a couple Pacific Island countries before he landed on the correct one, China. Which is the largest country in the area. How do you even do that?
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby PictureSarah » Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:29 pm UTC

That sounds to me like someone who is desperately trying to avoid the Asian=Chinese mistake that so many people seem to (stupidly) make. I know a few people who have had to repeatedly, exasperatedly explain to people that no, they are not Chinese, they are American, actually, and were adopted from Korea/Cambodia/their parents were born in Vietnam, etc.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby podbaydoor » Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:55 pm UTC

I guess that's funny because (around nerds anyway) I get mistaken for Japanese most of the time. It's both funny and sad to see them deflate when I tell them I'm Chinese, and then they lose interest. :|

I wish people would stop guessing at all. Just freaking ask me.
tenet |ˈtenit|
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a principle or belief, esp. one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy : the tenets of classical liberalism.
tenant |ˈtenənt|
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a person who occupies land or property rented from a landlord.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby Felstaff » Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:12 pm UTC

podbaydoor wrote:Just freaking ask me.

"So, where are you from?



No, originally"
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby PictureSarah » Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:18 pm UTC

...I have actually had people ask me that on more than one occasion. And anyone who knows me IRL here (which is quite a few people) knows that I pretty much just look...white. It's so bizarre. I guess I must be more ethnically ambiguous than I think, because random strangers have asked me at least a dozen times if I'm from Italy, Spain, or Israel. In one memorable instance, they asked me if I was from India. I am 3/4 caucasian, and speak with a North American (specifically Californian) accent. I don't know where the confusion really comes from.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby Angua » Thu Jul 28, 2011 5:04 pm UTC

No one can ever work out where I'm from. My Indian blood (1/4) and possibly the 1/16th Cherokee floating around gives me darkish skin (if I've been in the sun) and black hair, and my accent is 'mid-atlantic' so the British think I sound American, the Americans think I sound British, and noone thinks I sound like I'm from the Caribbean. Indian people often see the Indian in me, but otherwise they think Mediterranean or sometimes Latin American.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby SurgicalSteel » Thu Jul 28, 2011 5:10 pm UTC

My cousin just moved to Nebraska, which according to her is pretty much the non-POC capital of the midwest. Anytime somebody finds out that she speaks Spanish they ask her what country she immigrated from :roll:, I told her she should ask them if they consider Northern California a different country. It's kind of funny though, when she was younger everybody thought she was Asian and that my aunt and uncle had adopted her.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby el_loco_avs » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:11 pm UTC

Felstaff wrote:
podbaydoor wrote:Just freaking ask me.

"So, where are you from?



No, originally"



most annoying version I've had:
"What are you?"

They weren't trying to be assholes but I just wanted to blankly say "human".
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby el_loco_avs » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:13 pm UTC

Angua wrote:No one can ever work out where I'm from. My Indian blood (1/4) and possibly the 1/16th Cherokee floating around gives me darkish skin (if I've been in the sun) and black hair, and my accent is 'mid-atlantic' so the British think I sound American, the Americans think I sound British, and noone thinks I sound like I'm from the Caribbean. Indian people often see the Indian in me, but otherwise they think Mediterranean or sometimes Latin American.



I've noticed this. Although my sister now has the opposite happening in New York, with people actually going "no way!"
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby Belial » Mon Aug 01, 2011 11:45 am UTC

Just did some pruning.

As a word of reminder, please be advised that if your post follows the formula "Hi, I am totally white, and I have a gripe about POC" you are in the diametrically wrong thread. It doesn't matter how upset you are or how justified you think you are. It doesn't belong here. Don't post it.

Thanks. Carry on.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby fyrenwater » Sat Aug 13, 2011 1:48 am UTC

Felstaff wrote:"So, where are you from?

No, originally"
AAARGH. MASSIVE pet peeve of mine. Although sometimes I can use it to my advantage and scare people.
"Oakland, foo'. Now shut up or I'mma bust a cap in yo' ass!" </dork>


I came to share a story. The neighbor-who-shares-a-backyard-fence-with-my-family recently contacted us about said fence, which was wearing down and needed replacement. Okay, that's fine. But then here comes the awkward race issue. He's a 70+ old white guy: quiet, but kinda suspicious. I found out why he's suspicious:

1. About a decade ago, some friends and I had filmed a fight movie in my backyard. We filmed for about a week. Keep in mind we were dorky tweens flailing foam/plastic swords.
2. Recently, my mother tried out martial arts sword-fighting and practiced in our backyard. Imagine a dumpy little Asian woman flailing a sword around as awkwardly as the tweens in #1.

He took in all this and "deduced" that we were part of a dangerous "Oriental fighting troupe" (his words, not mine). He was planning on getting someone to tear down the fence and build a bigger, taller, more durable fence for security reasons. Because he was concerned that swords could accidentally come flying over the fence.


I don't know if I should be offended by this, but I can't stop laughing about the absurdity. XD
...It made more sense in my head.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby el_loco_avs » Sat Aug 13, 2011 10:40 am UTC

^ That's offensive in a kinda awesome way.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby PAstrychef » Sat Aug 13, 2011 11:28 am UTC

Well he would probaly come to a similar conclusion about anybody waving plastic swords or wooden sticks around next door. He just would have changed the racial descriptor. Swarthy, Eastern European types would have been thought go be Gypsies and so on.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby podbaydoor » Sat Aug 13, 2011 6:46 pm UTC

Unfortunately, not everyone is like grumpy Clint Eastwood.

I get more and more spooked the more I listen to the GOP presidential candidates. Not a single solitary one of them gives any indication that they would do any kind of good for non-white people. Is it just my paranoia and political bias creating this perception, or does it really seem like they would do active harm to minority populations?
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tenant |ˈtenənt|
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby SecondTalon » Sun Aug 14, 2011 1:55 am UTC

Yes. That last thing. I don't know if it's intentional or just flat out "Forgetting" that not everyone in the US is descended from European (British is Best! .. unless it's Irish. Or Scottish. Or still English. Whales? People aren't fish!) stock.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby podbaydoor » Sun Aug 14, 2011 3:47 am UTC

As far as I can tell, the only people of color that are ever seen around any of the GOP hopefuls are the ones who can buy their way into GOP affection with gobs of money. It's peculiar that every one of the candidates (except maybe the Ronpaul) is frantically trying to campaign on platforms designed to exclude almost everyone in the country from Liberty or Pursuit of Happiness*: we're gonna exclude women, we're gonna exclude people who have sex, we're gonna exclude non-whites, we're gonna exclude immigrants, we're gonna exclude non-Christians, we're gonna exclude poor people, we're probably gonna exclude middle-class people, also we're gonna exclude starving children.

Remind me how any of them are going to win the general election?


*And I get the feeling Michelle Bachmann would be perfectly happy to exclude some of us from Life.
tenet |ˈtenit|
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a principle or belief, esp. one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy : the tenets of classical liberalism.
tenant |ˈtenənt|
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a person who occupies land or property rented from a landlord.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby Cheezwhiz Jenkins » Sun Aug 14, 2011 4:04 am UTC

podbaydoor wrote:Unfortunately, not everyone is like grumpy Clint Eastwood.

I get more and more spooked the more I listen to the GOP presidential candidates. Not a single solitary one of them gives any indication that they would do any kind of good for non-white people. Is it just my paranoia and political bias creating this perception, or does it really seem like they would do active harm to minority populations?


Not if this is any indication.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby Midnight » Sun Aug 14, 2011 6:38 pm UTC

fyrenwater wrote:
Felstaff wrote:"So, where are you from?

No, originally"
AAARGH. MASSIVE pet peeve of mine. Although sometimes I can use it to my advantage and scare people.
"Oakland, foo'. Now shut up or I'mma bust a cap in yo' ass!" </dork>


I came to share a story. The neighbor-who-shares-a-backyard-fence-with-my-family recently contacted us about said fence, which was wearing down and needed replacement. Okay, that's fine. But then here comes the awkward race issue. He's a 70+ old white guy: quiet, but kinda suspicious. I found out why he's suspicious:

1. About a decade ago, some friends and I had filmed a fight movie in my backyard. We filmed for about a week. Keep in mind we were dorky tweens flailing foam/plastic swords.
2. Recently, my mother tried out martial arts sword-fighting and practiced in our backyard. Imagine a dumpy little Asian woman flailing a sword around as awkwardly as the tweens in #1.

He took in all this and "deduced" that we were part of a dangerous "Oriental fighting troupe" (his words, not mine). He was planning on getting someone to tear down the fence and build a bigger, taller, more durable fence for security reasons. Because he was concerned that swords could accidentally come flying over the fence.


I don't know if I should be offended by this, but I can't stop laughing about the absurdity. XD

To me, that's 100% funny. His powers of deduction are stunning. I can't believe he found you guys out.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby Plasma Man » Fri Aug 19, 2011 11:50 am UTC

Black scientists less likely to be allocated funding. Thought I'd drop this in here as it seems to be relevant to the thread.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby natraj » Tue Sep 27, 2011 4:56 pm UTC

I am having an enormously frustrating week. Yesterday at work one of the clients my team went to assist got angry that I dared to walk onto his property and yelled at us about how he was "old fashioned" and didn't talk to people like that and he didn't even want to look at my face. It was clearly very offensive to him that I had dared besmirch his land.

Lately I feel like I am just angry all the time, except for when I am too exhausted to be angry and then I just don't want to get out of bed.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby GonzoMcFonzo » Thu Sep 29, 2011 6:17 pm UTC

fyrenwater wrote:He took in all this and "deduced" that we were part of a dangerous "Oriental fighting troupe" (his words, not mine). He was planning on getting someone to tear down the fence and build a bigger, taller, more durable fence for security reasons. Because he was concerned that swords could accidentally come flying over the fence.

I don't know if I should be offended by this, but I can't stop laughing about the absurdity. XD

To be fair, his concerns are partially justified (about the flying swords, not the disgustingly casual racism). Most of the time, tweens (or teens, or even adults really) swinging swords in their back yard are swinging cheap SLOs that they bought at the mall. Since these things are usually made of cheap stainless steel with spot-welded rat-tail tangs, there is a high possibility of all or part of the sword flying away and hitting gods-know-what.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby podbaydoor » Tue Nov 08, 2011 6:00 pm UTC

I look damn good in Chinese robes / kimono-looking things. I have made a successful clockwork doll costume that's made a bit of a splash in the local steampunk community. I look, and feel, beautiful.

But I feel guilty every time I put on a Chinese or Japanese item of clothing. I'm playing right into the stereotype. I feel like I should be more subversive, somehow.
tenet |ˈtenit|
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby Shro » Wed Nov 09, 2011 3:22 pm UTC

podbaydoor wrote:But I feel guilty every time I put on a Chinese or Japanese item of clothing. I'm playing right into the stereotype. I feel like I should be more subversive, somehow.

Be subversive by not fulfilling the submissive Asian stereotype and just be the person you are who happens to be wearing an item of clothing from the area of the world that they are from.
This is part of the pendulum swinging too far the other way. You should never be ashamed of wearing your culture however you want to. Even though it's from a place of wanting to show people that you're more than just an appearance of the stereotype, feeling that you look like one should stop you from doing what you want, you know?
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby podbaydoor » Wed Nov 16, 2011 11:04 pm UTC

Somehow I missed this response.

I love it. I mean, when I'm in costume, I just act like myself, so I can get loud and bossy...so I guess it's all right. Thank you. :)
tenet |ˈtenit|
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby XJ_0 » Fri Nov 25, 2011 9:08 am UTC

Hello. I have some things that I feel I need to vent. I put in spoilers, because I find this upsetting.

Spoiler:
I'll start off by saying that I am white.

A few months ago, I was at the welfare office. After several hours of being there, my partners and I had to make a phone call in the lobby. A white man came out here, as well. He started conversation with me, and it was friendly for maybe only a few seconds. He quickly began with racial slurs against the black family that had left a few minutes ago. I asked, "Would you, please, stop being racist?" I got a look of disbelief before he pulled out the whole "haven't you heard of 'freedom of speech'?" thing. He then repeatedly questioned whether I had served this country. I managed to say, "No," and "who were you fighting for? They're American citizens, too," but I don't think he heard me. It became a shouting match until one of my partners shouted REALLY loud at him. He said one more stupid thing before leaving the building.
I've been left frustrated with myself for not being able to handle this situation in a more calm and effective manner. I would have preferred if I could have gotten my point across with witty words that would have made him stop and think, and change his behaviour. I'm frustrated that I engaged in shouting. This event continues to come back and bug me with all the things I could have said and done. I was also appalled to come across someone so openly racist. I'd not met someone that intense before.

And then there's another time that I had a conversation with a white man. It began with a conversation about video games, and then how someone was banned for using the n-word. He made the remark somewhere of, "Yeah, they all call themselves that, but white man can't even use it." I tried my hardest to explain that it's not appropriate to use/reclaim a slur that hasn't been used against you/r group. It came out that he believed that there was no more racism, or sexism, or homophobia... "Everyone is equal." "I'm on the same boat as everyone else." No, no, no, no, no. He wouldn't change his mind no matter how many examples I presented. He asked, "Why are you so hell-bent on this?" We argued until he walked away. I was surprised by his ignorance. I thought that once you give people proof, they'll begin to be swayed.

I'm frustrated, so frustrated, because I didn't know that people could be so blind, and so defendant of OBVIOUS racism. I'm also very sad.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby Felstaff » Fri Nov 25, 2011 9:35 am UTC

Oooh that makes my blood boil. I would have called him a disgrace and quickly departed. Reasoning with bigots rarely changes their life view, so acting in disgust and walking away before they manage to start soapboxing is a more punchy way of making it known that their views are officially Not Cool and they're a bad person and should feel bad.

Overall, I feel sorry for the black family in question, and sad that people like this guy not only exist, but are conceited enough to air their vile views to perfect strangers.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby podbaydoor » Fri Nov 25, 2011 6:35 pm UTC

I haven't worked out a strategy for those situations either. It may be a situation where trying to argue just turns into a race to the bottom no matter your intentions, because being able to shut people up with only one line really only happens in movies. But I have a hard time just walking away, because I know that acting disgusted and not giving them the time of day only feeds into their martyr or persecution complexes. Just cannot win.
tenet |ˈtenit|
noun
a principle or belief, esp. one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy : the tenets of classical liberalism.
tenant |ˈtenənt|
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby GonzoMcFonzo » Wed Feb 15, 2012 11:42 pm UTC

I had an interesting discussion with a friend the other day, and was curious what you people thought about it. I mentioned that I don't use "the n word" in conversation, for all the obvious reasons, but that I support black people using/reclaiming it (I identify as mexican-american or simply "brown"). My (black) friend told me that it was ok for me to say it, because nowadays hispanics face the same discrimination as black people, and "[my] ancestors never owned [his]."

I'd never heard that particular line of reasoning, and while I'm not going to change my speech patterns it did get me thinking. I can't decide if it's a small step towards a truly post-racial mindset (black or brown, we're all brothers) or simply more of the same "us vs. them" mentality.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby Webzter » Thu Feb 16, 2012 3:02 am UTC

Felstaff wrote:
podbaydoor wrote:Just freaking ask me.

"So, where are you from?



No, originally"


My mother, originally. I've moved since.

When my sister comes to visit, it irks me to no end when people say "is that your sister?" yes, she is "no, I mean biologically"....

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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby eternauta3k » Tue Feb 21, 2012 12:22 am UTC

I guess the term is ambiguous, but would a random Latin American person count as hispanic to you?
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby Amie » Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:25 am UTC

I am glad there's finally a thread for this.

I've noticed that people change their behaviour when they're around me when they come to know that I'm Indian. Usually I'm fine with this because maybe they're just being careful. However, this one time, someone very "respectfully" asked me if I am "very poor like in that Slumdog movie".

None of your fucking business.
Summer is miles and miles away, and no one would ask me to stay.
And I, should contemplate this change... to ease the pain.
And I, should step out of the rain... turn away.

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natraj
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby natraj » Tue Feb 21, 2012 4:37 pm UTC

Oh, eesh, after Slumdog Millionaire came out I got so many completely random strangers asking me if my life had been like that movie. Er, what? This is Hollywood. I do not expect that all random Bostonians I meet will be bank robbers like in The Town.

... or maybe I should just start asking everyone I meet from Charlestown if they rob banks often.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby podbaydoor » Tue Feb 21, 2012 4:44 pm UTC

Interesting conversation on Facebook over the racial slurs. Basically, Jeremy Lin the basketball player has been stirring up a bunch of discussion about racism in sports/professional leagues. A couple days ago, an ESPN writer published an article analyzing Lin's flaws as a player, what he needed to improve, etc. The headline was "A Chink In the Armor". The writer was suspended for 30 days. Jeremy Lin said he was sure it was unintentional and that he doesn't care about the flap anymore.

I'm Chinese and I've had the word "chink" thrown at me before as a slur. On the other hand, I've used the phrase "chink in the armor" all the time, in the sense of a gap or chip in a wall. I think the coincidence was unfortunate and an editor really should have caught the headline before it went out, but 30 days suspension is a bit harsh. It's all turning into a tempest in a teapot. Agree, disagree?
tenet |ˈtenit|
noun
a principle or belief, esp. one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy : the tenets of classical liberalism.
tenant |ˈtenənt|
noun
a person who occupies land or property rented from a landlord.

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natraj
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby natraj » Tue Feb 21, 2012 4:51 pm UTC

disagree, personally. i see the word used as a racial slur way, way more often than i see the phrase "chink in the armour" used. maybe it was legitimately a mistake, maybe it was a terribad double entendre, but they definitely should have not let that headline go out.
You want to know the future, love? Then wait:
I'll answer your impatient questions. Still --
They'll call it chance, or luck, or call it Fate,
The cards and stars that tumble as they will.

pronouns: they or he

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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby podbaydoor » Tue Feb 21, 2012 4:56 pm UTC

I'd call it a legitimate mistake, since the same writer has used the phrase regarding non-Asian players before. Heck, I didn't even blink when I first read the headline, until it was pointed out to me. Now the writer is being crucified in journalism circles and I just think the hyperventilating is getting too much. Terrible mistake, educate everyone about racial slurs, heartfelt mea culpa - why cry for more punishment?
tenet |ˈtenit|
noun
a principle or belief, esp. one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy : the tenets of classical liberalism.
tenant |ˈtenənt|
noun
a person who occupies land or property rented from a landlord.

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Amie
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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby Amie » Tue Feb 21, 2012 5:00 pm UTC

Agree.

The editor should have seen that and the writer should have warned, at best. Sometimes when you don't give a shit about what race people belong to and treat everyone equally, it'd hard to notice stuff like that. It just doesn't strike you because you've never looked at people like that and you've never thought anything more of the word. That may as well have been the case here.
Summer is miles and miles away, and no one would ask me to stay.
And I, should contemplate this change... to ease the pain.
And I, should step out of the rain... turn away.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] People of Colour

Postby podbaydoor » Tue Feb 21, 2012 5:04 pm UTC

I should mention here that now I can't see or use the phrase "chink in the armor" without giggling. Because I have a mental image of a miniature Chinese man perched cross-legged on a giant suit of mobile armor. I'm allowed, right? I'm a terrible person?
tenet |ˈtenit|
noun
a principle or belief, esp. one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy : the tenets of classical liberalism.
tenant |ˈtenənt|
noun
a person who occupies land or property rented from a landlord.


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