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#1 Posted by quirkwood (184 posts) -

Ok, I am pretty drunk right now and listenbg to two hipsters talk about movining house as I ride tram home. For some reason this made me think about how Vinny is "always" getting branded as racist on the podcast. This, in turn made me think of how I am branded as rascist for being Australian.

What I am wondering is that I say a hell of a lot of shit that could be considered racist, sexist. homophobic or any combination of the afore mentioned. I don't consider myself any of those things I pretty much don't give a shit about who you are or where you come from (in a g

#2 Posted by quirkwood (184 posts) -

FrIk.... Typing on my phone .....(in a good way) Does the fact I don't give a shit make me rasict, sexist, homophobic or any combo of those two? Or is not giving a shit about that shit the way to true world peace?

#3 Posted by LikeaSsur (1532 posts) -

Words are words, man. That's it. People that take offense to them are really just looking for a way to be victimized so they have attention.

Of course, depending on what words you use, the opposite could be true. Most people have it embedded in their brains that when you use that "N" word, you're doing so with malice and intent to harm. That's where the racism lies. So long as you aren't saying that stuff from a place of hate, and instead doing so from humor, then go right ahead (of course, mind what you say around strangers, since they don't know how you use those words).

Racism is kind of a blame on both sides. It takes one person to be racist, and another to call them out. Sometimes it's valid (Like I said, using slurs out of a place of hate), and sometimes it's taken too seriously (That South Park episode about the town flag springs to mind, I forget the name of it). Maybe if we all stopped caring what color your skin was, we'd be a better society for it, but that won't happen for a couple centuries more.

#4 Posted by McGhee (6094 posts) -

Hey fuckface, don't mind me if I verbally abuse you. Go fuck yourself.

Now we have world peace?

#5 Posted by buzz_killington (3532 posts) -

Same. I say a lot of shit I don't actually believe, and people get offended. You know what I say? FUCK EM

#6 Posted by konig_kei (618 posts) -
@buzz_killington

Same. I say a lot of shit I don't actually believe, and people get offended. You know what I say? FUCK EM

So what's the point of saying it if you don't believe it? Sounds like you're just deliberately saying it just to offend.
#7 Edited by TeflonBilly (4713 posts) -

I blame offended people, not people being offensive

#8 Posted by bartok (2480 posts) -

Vinny is always talking about how he hates the Portuguese. He says they are Spain's asshole and that their Water Dog is lame as hell.

#9 Posted by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -

@quirkwood said:

This, in turn made me think of how I am branded as rascist for being Australian.

I don't think I've ever heard of that.

#10 Posted by TobbRobb (4649 posts) -

I think, on sites like this and in most intelligent company. The only ones who even give a shit are unrelated. I mean, the large majority of racist remarks here are done in the name of comedy, with no malicious intent. But there is almost always someone who takes offense, and makes it a big deal. And with no evidence at all, I'm pretty damn sure no one who takes offense actually is at the butt end of the joke. White Knighting up in here.

But in real life, and on more degenerate forums like, youtube comments or something. Racism is a real thing, with real hate and real victims. That is not cool in any way and people have a right to be offended when their race is being insulted.

TLDR: Stop covering for other people, they aren't incapable of defending themselves. People need to either learn to read intent, or stop making racy jokes in potentially wrong company.

#11 Posted by Brodehouse (9950 posts) -

George Carlin, Explicit Language, 1990. Look it up.

http://www.iceboxman.com/carlin/pael.php#track14

I'd post the actual transcript but I'm sure someone would see a _bad word_, call me racist and sic a moderator.

#12 Posted by ThePickle (4182 posts) -

The thing with Vinny being racist is just a joke, right?

#13 Posted by Toxeia (729 posts) -

Actions speak louder than words, unless you're a dipshit who thinks that the world is free of sarcasm or darker humor than "Why'd the chicken cross the road?" If people are going to be offended by the things you say, let them be. We've all got better things to do than consider the feelings of some overly sensitive hippy that thinks because we tell a black joke to a group of friends (that we KNOW will find it light heartedly hilarious) who will then turn around and think that our purpose in life is to lynch every minority in sight.

And I think EVERYONE should be able to use racial slurs. If we can take it back from the people who are discriminatory and bring these words to a place where they are solely used in good humor - and no longer slurs - then they wouldn't have to be so feared. It actually seems more racist to me that because someone's not a specific minority that a word is off limits to them.

@konig_kei said:

@buzz_killington

Same. I say a lot of shit I don't actually believe, and people get offended. You know what I say? FUCK EM

So what's the point of saying it if you don't believe it? Sounds like you're just deliberately saying it just to offend.

You seem like the kind of person who is greatly disturbed by the fact that "Cards Against Humanity" exists. I don't think the Holocaust is funny, but god damn if it doesn't win every round of that game.

@Video_Game_King said:

@quirkwood said:

This, in turn made me think of how I am branded as rascist for being Australian.

I don't think I've ever heard of that.

I've just always assumed that Australia was like Texas, just with Aboriginals instead of Mexicans, and Kangaroos instead of cattle. That automatically makes them all super racist. They drink kangaroo milk in Australia, right?

#14 Posted by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -

@Toxeia said:

@Video_Game_King said:

@quirkwood said:

This, in turn made me think of how I am branded as rascist for being Australian.

I don't think I've ever heard of that.

I've just always assumed that Australia was like Texas, just with Aboriginals instead of Mexicans, and Kangaroos instead of cattle. That automatically makes them all super racist. They drink kangaroo milk in Australia, right?

This doesn't make it any less confusing. I wish there were more instances in life where I could use the phrase "just with Aboriginals instead of Mexicans".

#15 Posted by quirkwood (184 posts) -

@bartok: My step father is an arsehole and Portuguese but those two things have nothing to do with eachother. Also, all dogs suck ;).

@TobbRobb: Pffft, people on this site intelligent? ;)

@ThePickle: No, he is a filthy, filthy racist, he hates Italians like nobody's business and changed his surname to Caravella just so he could rag on them and get away with it... ;)

DRINK MORE BOOZE!

#16 Posted by themangalist (1735 posts) -

Oh this is going to go well...

Two words to summarize everyone's views on the matter: Racism sucks.

#17 Edited by Animasta (14691 posts) -

unfortunately, there is a lot of racism in australia and people tend to brand many of the white aussies that way. I don't know you enough to say either way, but as long as you believe you aren't racist and don't treat aboriginals bad just for being aboriginal than you should be cool.

abos really are treated pretty bad though.

#18 Posted by kgb0515 (411 posts) -

I just don't like the whole, we can use this word but you can't use this word mentality. If a word is offensive, it's offensive across the board. Doesn't matter what color you are. If it's just a word, then it shouldn't matter who says it unless they are purposely trying to get a rise out of someone. Does that make sense?

#19 Posted by Elyk247 (367 posts) -

Racism is bad, m'kay.

I never given racism a lot of thought. It's stupid, petty, and totally beneath me.

Online
#20 Posted by Arbie (1449 posts) -

Who was that comedian? The one who makes fun out of people getting offended so easily. Whoever he was I pretty much stand by him. Racism is thinking someone is lesser because of their race, the same with sexism and what have you. People have made fun of me for being a girl, for being a bi-sexual, for being blonde and for being as pale as Nosferatu. But I never felt threatened by it because I can give as good as I get! But if someone ever told me I couldn't do something because of any of those reasons then sure, then that would be . . . something-ism! But then I'd just tell them to go hook themselves. I think people throw around words too lightly because everyone loves to be offended. It all comes down to, what was it Frankie Boyle called it? Oh yes, 'Spastic gaytalk.' (i.e political correctness).

#21 Posted by TooWalrus (13198 posts) -
@konig_kei said:
@buzz_killington

Same. I say a lot of shit I don't actually believe, and people get offended. You know what I say? FUCK EM

So what's the point of saying it if you don't believe it? Sounds like you're just deliberately saying it just to offend.
The other day, that stupid love song was on the radio at work, and I turned to Scott and said "Scott- I want to know what love is- I want YOU to show me..." Which made the girl behind me laugh out loud. 
 
...yeah, why would you EVER say something you don't believe? It's really ALL about context, man. Think about it.
#22 Posted by Arbie (1449 posts) -

@TooWalrus: I think the girl behind you may have been laughing at the fact you're homosexual. You should be offended imo.

Now, what's this about not saying something unless you believe it?

#23 Posted by Jace (1094 posts) -

@Erzs said:

Who was that comedian? The one who makes fun out of people getting offended so easily. Whoever he was I pretty much stand by him. Racism is thinking someone is lesser because of their race, the same with sexism and what have you. People have made fun of me for being a girl, for being a bi-sexual, for being blonde and for being as pale as Nosferatu. But I never felt threatened by it because I can give as good as I get! But if someone ever told me I couldn't do something because of any of those reasons then sure, then that would be . . . something-ism! But then I'd just tell them to go hook themselves. I think people throw around words too lightly because everyone loves to be offended. It all comes down to, what was it Frankie Boyle called it? Oh yes, 'Spastic gaytalk.' (i.e political correctness).

I think you're talking about George Carlin.

The issue is, especially in the U.S., people love to be the victim. It doesn't matter how small the offense is, if it can be made into a big ordeal they'll try their best to get something out of it. As a white male, the only racism I've ever experienced has been in a joking way ("It must be hard for you to get a job" "Cant jump/run/dance/etc.")

If someone tells me I can't do something because of any existential factor, I just try harder to prove them wrong. I don't waste any time trying to appear emotionally wounded.

Online
#24 Edited by BRNK (307 posts) -

Some of you guys are not thinking this through very clearly. I know you'd like to pretend that words are devoid of meaning, power and history, but they aren't. Ever been bullied by being harassed? Ever known someone who took their life because the verbal abuse they got (for no fault of their own) convinced them they had no value? Ever consider that while you may be an intelligent person who judges others on your first-hand experience of them, an awful lot of people in this world are dumb and impressionable and by perpetuating racial stereotypes you're making it more likely those dumb people will act on them? Is that your direct fault? No.... but do you really want to play a part in keeping other people down just to maintain your entitlement to hurtful words?

Just think about this shit outside of your bubble for a minute.

#25 Edited by TheDudeOfGaming (6078 posts) -

Far as I'm concerned, you an use whatever word you like to describe whatever thing you want to...so long as that thing ain't another man's country, then shit about to get real.

@BRNK said:

Some of you guys are not thinking this through very clearly. I know you'd like to pretend that words are devoid of meaning, power and history, but they aren't. Ever been bullied by being harassed? Ever known someone who took their life because the verbal abuse they got (for no fault of their own) convinced them they had no value? Ever consider that while you may be an intelligent person who judges others on your first-hand experience of them, an awful lot of people in this world are dumb and impressionable and by perpetuating racial stereotypes you're making it more likely those dumb people will act on them? Is that your direct fault? No.... but do you really want to play a part in keeping other people down just to maintain your entitlement to hurtful words?

Just think about this shit outside of your bubble for a minute.

That's only if your using those words to specifically insult someone. And if it's so offensive, then someone can lay the motherfucker out instead of running around like a bunch of little fucking kids and crying "Teacheeeer! He said a word I don't like!" Grow the fuck up.

#26 Posted by bunnymud (717 posts) -

Those that have racism on the brain 24/7 tend to be racist themselves. I'm surprised every copy of Blazing Saddles hasn't been dragged into the alley set on fire.

#27 Posted by BRNK (307 posts) -

@TheDudeOfGaming said:

Far as I'm concerned, you an use whatever word you like to describe whatever thing you want to...so long as that thing ain't another man's country, then shit about to get real.

@BRNK said:

Some of you guys are not thinking this through very clearly. I know you'd like to pretend that words are devoid of meaning, power and history, but they aren't. Ever been bullied by being harassed? Ever known someone who took their life because the verbal abuse they got (for no fault of their own) convinced them they had no value? Ever consider that while you may be an intelligent person who judges others on your first-hand experience of them, an awful lot of people in this world are dumb and impressionable and by perpetuating racial stereotypes you're making it more likely those dumb people will act on them? Is that your direct fault? No.... but do you really want to play a part in keeping other people down just to maintain your entitlement to hurtful words?

Just think about this shit outside of your bubble for a minute.

That's only if your using those words to specifically insult someone. And if it's so offensive, then someone can lay the motherfucker out instead of running around like a bunch of little fucking kids and crying "Teacheeeer! He said a word I don't like!" Grow the fuck up.

It seems you didn't read (or maybe didn't think about) any of the text you quoted. You continue to pretend words only have the meaning you intend, and you seem to think I was complaining to some authority instead of appealing to your (apparently underdeveloped) sense of human empathy. Adults consider the feelings of others.

#28 Posted by Brendan (7810 posts) -

@TheDudeOfGaming said:

Far as I'm concerned, you an use whatever word you like to describe whatever thing you want to...so long as that thing ain't another man's country, then shit about to get real.

@BRNK said:

Some of you guys are not thinking this through very clearly. I know you'd like to pretend that words are devoid of meaning, power and history, but they aren't. Ever been bullied by being harassed? Ever known someone who took their life because the verbal abuse they got (for no fault of their own) convinced them they had no value? Ever consider that while you may be an intelligent person who judges others on your first-hand experience of them, an awful lot of people in this world are dumb and impressionable and by perpetuating racial stereotypes you're making it more likely those dumb people will act on them? Is that your direct fault? No.... but do you really want to play a part in keeping other people down just to maintain your entitlement to hurtful words?

Just think about this shit outside of your bubble for a minute.

That's only if your using those words to specifically insult someone. And if it's so offensive, then someone can lay the motherfucker out instead of running around like a bunch of little fucking kids and crying "Teacheeeer! He said a word I don't like!" Grow the fuck up.

You just said "lay a motherfucker out" and "grow the fuck up" in the same sentence.

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#29 Posted by TheDudeOfGaming (6078 posts) -

@BRNK said:

@TheDudeOfGaming said:

Far as I'm concerned, you an use whatever word you like to describe whatever thing you want to...so long as that thing ain't another man's country, then shit about to get real.

@BRNK said:

Some of you guys are not thinking this through very clearly. I know you'd like to pretend that words are devoid of meaning, power and history, but they aren't. Ever been bullied by being harassed? Ever known someone who took their life because the verbal abuse they got (for no fault of their own) convinced them they had no value? Ever consider that while you may be an intelligent person who judges others on your first-hand experience of them, an awful lot of people in this world are dumb and impressionable and by perpetuating racial stereotypes you're making it more likely those dumb people will act on them? Is that your direct fault? No.... but do you really want to play a part in keeping other people down just to maintain your entitlement to hurtful words?

Just think about this shit outside of your bubble for a minute.

That's only if your using those words to specifically insult someone. And if it's so offensive, then someone can lay the motherfucker out instead of running around like a bunch of little fucking kids and crying "Teacheeeer! He said a word I don't like!" Grow the fuck up.

It seems you didn't read (or maybe didn't think about) any of the text you quoted. You continue to pretend words only have the meaning you intend, and you seem to think I was complaining to some authority instead of appealing to your (apparently underdeveloped) sense of human empathy. Adults consider the feelings of others.

No I read it, it just seems like you didn't understand my point. I'm not saying "You should go to some black folks and say the N-word for the lulz because words have no meaning" I'm saying.... sticks and stones may break my bones, and if words offend you so much you can be the one who's doing the breaking. You Americans need to realize there are far bigger problems in life than some asshole (such as myself) saying stuff you don't like. Oh and by the way, no one in the entire world gets worked up about racism like you Americans do. It's bad sure, but you guys make it look like it's the worst thing on planet earth, which it is not.

And if you still don't get what I was saying, then fuck it, I give up and you're 100% correct.

#30 Posted by TheHumanDove (2523 posts) -

But what if racism and sexism join forces and become a captain planet

#31 Posted by Deleth (250 posts) -

@Animasta said:

unfortunately, there is a lot of racism in australia and people tend to brand many of the white aussies that way. I don't know you enough to say either way, but as long as you believe you aren't racist and don't treat aboriginals bad just for being aboriginal than you should be cool.

abos really are treated pretty bad though.

You do realize stereotyping white australians as racists is racist, right?

On Topic, the problem is that racism by now is something people shout to justify their behavior. As in "you're racist and you've offended me so that makes it alright if I beat you up and mug you!". Just take a look at the current "demonstrations" in the islamic world where people go completly berserk and murdered several Americans already over a small video clip.

Those same people who're constantly calling people with another religion and world view "swines and apes" and talk about how it would be best to kill them all. Screaming racism empowers the one who does it and cast them as the victim therefore justifying their every actions and putting blame onto the victims.

#32 Edited by Slag (4379 posts) -

@quirkwood said:

What I am wondering is that I say a hell of a lot of shit that could be considered racist, sexist. homophobic or any combination of the afore mentioned. I don't consider myself any of those things I pretty much don't give a shit about who you are or where you come from ...Does the fact I don't give a shit make me rasict, sexist, homophobic or any combo of those two? Or is not giving a shit about that shit the way to true world peace

What those things you say mean to you are not necessarily what they mean to someone who hears it. And you already know that the societal meaning of what you say is offensive otherwise you wouldn't be asking this question in the first place.

It's like the art of telling a good joke in a way, you have to be respectful and understanding of your audience. It's the listener who decides if you are funny, not you. It's the listener who decides if you are being offensive not you.

The key is knowing and respecting your audience.

Not giving a shit, especially when you clearly know this has the potential to really offend people, is just irresponsible. It's the opposite of "true world peace" bro, that's how stupid shit gets started.

If you don't mean it, don't say it. Especially if you are around people you don't know well and who don't know you well. You can't expect people to be mindreaders to know "you don't mean it that way".

If you are around a group of close friends who share your sense of humor, that's a judgement call.

I don't understand why this seems to be so hard for some people to understand. Seems like common sense to me.

#33 Posted by Senno (74 posts) -

Says it all, really.

#34 Posted by DukesT3 (1917 posts) -

My ex-girlfriends friend once told me if my mom crossed the border to give birth to me. I'm sure I wanted to slit her throat after that remark... so racism sucks.

#35 Posted by Animasta (14691 posts) -

@Deleth: ...that's what I said in my first sentence? People was meant to mean other people and not me. There is a lot of racism in australia towards aboriginal australians, and that's a fact. unfortunately, this has led to white australians being branded racist without knowing if they are or not.

#36 Posted by Gamer_152 (14078 posts) -

I think it's a little unclear on what exact kind of behaviour you're talking about, while I don't think either are good there's a bit of a difference between slurs and more specific remarks about race, sex, sexual orientation, etc. Obviously, the latter we can agree is definitely not good, it's ignorant, damaging, and hurtful, but I also think the former is a problem. This is something the very large majority of the community seem to disagree with me on, but I don't think there's a defence for publicly using homophobic and racial slurs.

People talk about context, that they have gay/non-white friends who aren't offended by these words, or the fact that they don't mean the slurs to be taken in a discriminatory manner, but these things are irrelevant, because obviously regardless of context, who your friends are, and intent, these words have the power to hurt people. People also talk about how the offended are at fault and are to blame for taking the slurs poorly, but we know these words offend people.You wouldn't tell random people on the street to "fuck off and die" then blame them when they get upset. Why? Because offending people by using offensive language towards another person is obviously your fault. You can do whatever you like in the private company of consenting adults, but when you use words that have that kind of weight behind them around whoever you like, that's not okay.

Moderator
#37 Edited by Asian2Go (181 posts) -

@Slag said:

@quirkwood said:

What I am wondering is that I say a hell of a lot of shit that could be considered racist, sexist. homophobic or any combination of the afore mentioned. I don't consider myself any of those things I pretty much don't give a shit about who you are or where you come from ...Does the fact I don't give a shit make me rasict, sexist, homophobic or any combo of those two? Or is not giving a shit about that shit the way to true world peace

What those things you say mean to you are not necessarily what they mean to someone who hears it. And you already know that the societal meaning of what you say is offensive otherwise you wouldn't be asking this question in the first place.

It's like the art of telling a good joke in a way, you have to be respectful and understanding of your audience. It's the listener who decides if you are funny, not you. It's the listener who decides if you are being offensive not you.

The key is knowing and respecting your audience.

Not giving a shit, especially when you clearly know this has the potential to really offend people, is just irresponsible. It's the opposite of "true world peace" bro, that's how stupid shit gets started.

If you don't mean it, don't say it. Especially if you are around people you don't know well and who don't know you well. You can't expect people to be mindreaders to know "you don't mean it that way".

If you are around a group of close friends who share your sense of humor, that's a judgement call.

I don't understand why this seems to be so hard for some people to understand. Seems like common sense to me.

I couldn't agree more with this. It baffles me when blame goes to the person who was offended instead of the offender. Just because you may not think something was offensive or hurtful doesn't mean others will feel the same way. Then again, this may just be me. As someone who has been exposed to a fair share of racial bigotry, I don't like potentially offending and upsetting people, so I make sure to watch what I say when I'm in mixed company. But saying something with the mentality of "oh if they get offended, then, well, fuck them because I did not nothing wrong," is ridiculous. Show some respect and decency to others. Understand that people think differently than you and may be more sensitive to certain things compared to you. Don't try to criminalize someone else when it's fully possible that you were just being an asshole.

#38 Edited by Brandino (250 posts) -

@LikeaSsur said:

Words are words, man. That's it. People that take offense to them are really just looking for a way to be victimized so they have attention.

Of course, depending on what words you use, the opposite could be true. Most people have it embedded in their brains that when you use that "N" word, you're doing so with malice and intent to harm. That's where the racism lies. So long as you aren't saying that stuff from a place of hate, and instead doing so from humor, then go right ahead (of course, mind what you say around strangers, since they don't know how you use those words).

Racism is kind of a blame on both sides. It takes one person to be racist, and another to call them out. Sometimes it's valid (Like I said, using slurs out of a place of hate), and sometimes it's taken too seriously (That South Park episode about the town flag springs to mind, I forget the name of it). Maybe if we all stopped caring what color your skin was, we'd be a better society for it, but that won't happen for a couple centuries more.

Could not agree more and honestly i believe people need to be a little less politically correct.

As a gay person my family/friends always walked on pins and needles around me by not using the word "fag" or "gay" to each other jokingly and i took more offense to that than the actual words, every gay person i know including myself does not get offended when friends are calling each other a "fag" or "gay" out to stupid humor. We actually take more offense when straight people get upset over those words being used in fun because it's really not offensive unless you are really uptight and PC. I am not saying it's ok to go around calling people those names and i am highly against hate speech but there is a line between hate speech and playing around/joking with a friend and i think the problem is people need to lighten the fuck up.

It's ok to be upset about racism and hate speech but you also have to understand some people have a dark sense of humor (including myself) and people need to stop getting so damn offended all the time by non-sense.

@kgb0515 said:

I just don't like the whole, we can use this word but you can't use this word mentality. If a word is offensive, it's offensive across the board. Doesn't matter what color you are. If it's just a word, then it shouldn't matter who says it unless they are purposely trying to get a rise out of someone. Does that make sense?

Totally get where you are coming from and i completely agree.

#39 Posted by thomasnash (556 posts) -

I'm always ab it bothered by these conversations. I don't really know where I stand, although I don't personally find racist, sexist and generally "offensive" material funny, I'm pretty damn pro free speech, and it worries me how much people on the "left" of these debates seem to forget about that. On the other hand I don't really believe that it's just "ok" to make these jokes. I don't want to write an essay about it, but here's a few of my thoughts, not towards any particular conclusion but I think you probably know where I'm coming from.

- I think intentionality is a really disingenuous defense. Any offensive utterance is a self-contained interaction between the offender and the offendee, and the offendee has precious little access to the intent of the offender. To say that in the moment of utterance a sentence can't be offensive because it wasn't intended to be ignores the fact that that piece of information is unretrievable at the moment when offense is taken. Obviously this is mitigated sometimes by context and prior experience of the person or people involved, but even then; my friends and I always used to spend a lot of time making "hilarious" offensive jokes, safe in the knowledge that we weren't really racist. But eventually I just stopped and thought, what makes me so sure that I'm not racist? What do I do that allows me to say that. In fact I "do" a lot more stuff that would make people call me a racist. I guess where I'm going with all of this, to make a slightly loftier philosophical claim, is that it's your actions that define you, at least to other people, so it's maybe a bit illusory to cling onto a "real" self that mitigates any negative actions you might take. To put it another way, if there's a point of rupture between what you do and the type of person you think you are, maybe you should think hard about why that is. Obviously, this isn't a universal experience, and no doubt many of you will immediately tell me about all the actions that make you not racist, but then I'd still have to ask why you feel the need to say one thing and do another, even if the positive "doing" is given more weight.

- The other thing people here seem to be pointing to a lot is the fact that "they are just words." I would suggest to anyone interested in thinking seriously about this should investigate the category of the performative in language. It was first coined by JL Austin in his book "How to Do Things with Words" and was expanded on by Searle, amongst otheres. It basically describes a category of sentence which doesn't only serve a purely descriptive function like most of language, but actually constitutes an action in itself, in the moment of utterance. It's fairly interesting in and of itself, just to convincingly break a fairly commonsense view of language that I think a lot of people have, if they've given it any thought at all. But really it's important because Judith Butler does some pretty great work examining how it goes into the production of injurious speech, in particular in "Exciteable Speech" which largely focuses on Queer Theory issues. I don't really want to say anything definitive because I know plenty of people will take issue with those books and theories, but I hope at least people accept that there is the possibility that there is a bit more to words than just ephemera.

- The idea of accrued meaning to these words is really interesting to me. Certain words have had attempts made to "reclaim" them, Queer being a pretty solid example. I sometimes wonder whether it's ever possible to break those historical meanings which are accrued from the words themselves. Stephen Pinker talks about it a bit in The Blank Slatewhere he gets all angry at an art exhibition that was basically lots of photos of stereotypes. He argued I think that instead of making us face our preconceptions, or challenging them, it just reproduced them and made them acceptable. Then again there's something slightly different about that and the reclamation of "Queer" because I suppose the whole thing with queer is that it's taking a word that has no content except "homosexual" and saying "so what?" And this is where I'll stop jabbering because I'm about to tie myself in theoretical knots, because that would imply that intention (to offend) is in itself the offensive element.

Sorry, I went a bit overboard maybe. I'm just genuinely interested in this topic. I think it's probably pretty obvious how I feel about it, but it's obvious even to me that without a lot of thought it's not a tenable position from which to get too argumentative.

#40 Edited by BiffMcBlumpkin (3720 posts) -

Vinny is a known racist and homophobe and he makes absolutely no secret of it.

I was actually originally linked to this forum from Stormfront and I've never looked back since.

And with those big arms of his, those big beautiful white arms...

#41 Posted by BraveToaster (12589 posts) -

Why care what people think about you? But, maybe you should watch what you say, especially when you're around people you don't know. If you end up saying the wrong thing to the right person, things may get out of hand.

#42 Posted by Bocam (3752 posts) -

Racism sucks, but just saying a "bad" word doesn't make you a racist.

#43 Posted by Dad_Is_A_Zombie (1225 posts) -

Nope, not gonna take the bait. Getting out of here...

#44 Posted by afrofools (1347 posts) -

@Animasta said:

unfortunately, there is a lot of racism in australia and people tend to brand many of the white aussies that way. I don't know you enough to say either way, but as long as you believe you aren't racist and don't treat aboriginals bad just for being aboriginal than you should be cool.

abos really are treated pretty bad though.

No they are not treated bad. They were a few decades ago by the rednecks that ran the country though. Did you know they get more of everything than white Australians now? That's because the original white settlers put them in a place of disadvantage, and now everyone, not just descendants from the English, but Indians, Italians, New Zealanders, French, etcetera now all have to pay for what the English settlers did to the aboriginals. Some aboriginals live in their own communities, and they are provided free housing, free food, free everything. They don't have to work. Their communities are filled with incest, rape, and domestic violence. They destroy their homes and possessions, which are then replaced and fixed by the government. They are allowed to hunt endangered species so they don't lose their traditions, yet are allowed to do so with western inventions like motorboats. Every sector of the Australian government that deals with the community gives Aboriginals preferential treatment.

Now before everyone starts calling me a racist or a conservative, I'm not. I understand that they must be given preferential treatment, as a larger portion of their race come from poor upbringings than others. But don't say they are treated bad. They were treated bad, and now everyone is paying for it, and must continue to be looked after until the problem is mostly fixed (It's unfixable). Racism is not cool, my ancestors came to Australia after the Nazis destroyed their homeland (Holland). The problem with giving them preferential treatment, is it separates them from the rest of the community. It creates an 'us' and 'them' mentality among the population. If you apply for University, go to the doctor, apply for financial assistance, get a car licence, or apply for a job - on the paper that you must fill out their will be a section somewhere that asks you to indicate if you are any of the following: Aboriginal, Torrest Strait Islander, or neither. If one of your ancestors is Aboriginal, then you must tick the aboriginal box. Now why must they know whether or not you are Aboriginal? You are a person, I am a person, we are all people. No wonder some Aboriginals feel they are being alienated by the rest of society. How offended would I be if I had to tick a box that said 'of European descent.'

The problem is getting worse, too, in-regards to all races. Their are people from the Middle East and elsewhere who are fleeing their countries, either because of an ongoing war, or for similar reasons as my ancestors had. They do whatever they can to get to Australia. They don't wait for the official channels to let them through, who would, so they cross the ocean on overcrowded poorly-maintained boats to get to Australia. Now the media of the country have branded them as 'boat people,' and give them either an unflattering image or one that taps into people's hearts, making people angry with the government for not allowing them all in, and placing them in detention centres. As with most issues, their is no clear answer. Yes detaining them is incredibly inhumane, even if you are giving them a comfortable beds, free food, and internet. It doesn't make up for being locked up. But if we just allowed everyone in to the country then they would need to be supported until they can get jobs. Now the conservatives get angry because some of these refugees actually take fights back home to visit their families, but I think that's a bit short-sighted. Their is no right way, the more ethical way would be to let everyone in, and provide free transport. But Australia isn't really capable of handling an influx of population, the country cannot scale effectively. In regards to this race issue, I don't have an opinion, it is to difficult for myself to make an opinion, the media doesn't help anyone have a reasonable idea of the right way to go about it, and I'm pretty sure the decision makers don't know what they are doing either.

The racial issues of Australia will continue long after I'm dead, and they will likely be much worse than they are now. So much for a multicultural society. I guess that when we eventually become a manufacturing country again, and China's China, and Indians outsource their call centres to us and get aggravated about our terrible pronunciation of their language, it might bring us all together. To anyone being mistreated for having a different race, wherever you are, my heart goes out to you, even if I don't know your personally and your personal struggles.

#45 Posted by Vampir (139 posts) -

If words are just words, and it's the offended's fault for being offended, then their words are also just words, and it's the annoyed's fault for being annoyed.

#46 Posted by TheDudeOfGaming (6078 posts) -

@afrofools: Damn son, you so racist!

#47 Posted by Clonedzero (4200 posts) -

i find racist jokes to be super funny alot of the time, but i dont really dislike people cus of race.

does that make me racist?

#48 Posted by NlGHTCRAWLER (1215 posts) -

@Clonedzero said:

i find racist jokes to be super funny alot of the time, but i dont really dislike people cus of race.

does that make me racist?

No, it makes you a Jew.

#49 Posted by iGooner7 (136 posts) -

Talking about racism? Well as an Arab i always get abused when i fly to uk or america.

Im a human too. hardcore gamer, love football, and i live just like how everybody does

I still get abused for being an arab and they call me a "Terrorist" when actually terrorists are everywhere + they dont even come 1% of arabs in majority

I get offended alot but why shall I care since i know who am i? I know that im not a terrorist and i know that im no different than any other human

So as i say, FUCK EM ALL!

#50 Posted by Deleth (250 posts) -

@Animasta said:

@Deleth: ...that's what I said in my first sentence? People was meant to mean other people and not me. There is a lot of racism in australia towards aboriginal australians, and that's a fact. unfortunately, this has led to white australians being branded racist without knowing if they are or not.

Actually racism while something bad is sadly also something very normal. The majority of people all around the world are extremly racist. The only ones who go out of their way to actually condemn and fight it are the western countries. Funnily enough those are the countries who in a few generations wont exist in the way they day today anymore. :D