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11 comments

1 palomino  Fri, Jun 21, 2013 8:55:55pm

It’s not the word in and of itself. It’s the unique history of prejudice, oppression and anti-black violence that goes along with the word.

2 stabby  Fri, Jun 21, 2013 10:07:55pm

I really, really don’t get it.

You really, really are missing empathy. I don’t mean this in the sense of “you are doing cruel things, you must lack empathy,” rather I mean it as “you totally lack an understanding of reactions that are felt by many and obvious to many.” You don’t even seem to have a model of what makes people react.

3 Locker  Sat, Jun 22, 2013 2:05:10am

re: #1 palomino

It’s not the word in and of itself. It’s the unique history of prejudice, oppression and anti-black violence that goes along with the word.

That’s a whole lot of stuff to attach to one word. It’s also a whole lot of assumption to think that a person supports all that bad stuff because they used a word. Claiming to know someone’s heart, mind and what they believe in because they said a word you don’t like is ridiculous. Utterly.

4 CuriousLurker  Sat, Jun 22, 2013 2:08:11am
The insinuation, based on his article, that Josh Marshall couldn’t possibly think or say things he wouldn’t share is utterly ridiculous.

I saw no such insinuation. He wasn’t speaking in general terms, he was talking specifically about racism—white-on-black racism and its history.

I don’t like the n-word. I don’t use it, ever. No one who enters my home is allowed to use it, and if they did they’d be told to leave.

Does that imply that I never say other things in private that I’d rather not be made public? No, it does not.

This language stuff is always hard for me. Not really sure why this or that word bugs people so much. People are still going to think what they think and then it becomes a game of “don’t let someone catch you saying…”

So if someone who disliked your mom/sister/daughter/wife walked up to her and called her the c-word, you’d just shrug it off (and expect her to shrug it off)? Somehow I doubt it.

Everyone I know and have ever met says stuff they wouldn’t want to be caught saying in public. Every day, all the time. When someone finally messes up we all jump on em and say ‘Ah HA! I knew you were x,y,z”.

This is absurd. Do you talk the same way here as you when speaking with family members at home? What about at work or when applying for a job? What about when pulled over by the police? What about at a party with friends?

Of course we speak differently in different situations. Barring adults with medical/psychological conditions, young children are pretty much the only ones who don’t edit what comes out of their mouths (and even they will lie to stay out of trouble if they know something they did was socially unacceptable).

If we never censored ourselves there would likely be a lot more blood flowing in the streets every day than there already is.

Keep in mind that all of this ugliness came out in a videotaped deposition that was part of a discrimination suit filed by a former employee, so it’s NOT something Deen said in private that’s being used as some sort of “gotcha”. People shouldn’t have to put up with racism, sexism, etc. in the workplace.

I think it’s a dumb game and I hate playing it. You can’t say X but you can say Y that means exactly the same thing.

What word means exactly the same thing as n*****, with all of its history?

You can hate someone’s guts and every action you take validates that hate but if you say nice words then it’s all ok.

For example?

5 Locker  Sat, Jun 22, 2013 2:08:53am

re: #2 stabby

I really, really don’t get it.

You really, really are missing empathy. I don’t mean this in the sense of “you are doing cruel things, you must lack empathy,” rather I mean it as “you totally lack an understanding of reactions that are felt by many and obvious to many.” You don’t even seem to have a model of what makes people react.

My entire comment is showing empathy towards the everyone in the world world. How we all make mistakes, all think stuff other people wouldn’t like and all say things we’d like to take back. You, on the other hand, show empathy with those who can’t control their reactions and blame them on other people.

I’ll take my empathy towards accepting the reality that each human is imperfect over your condescension and moral superiority.

6 Locker  Sat, Jun 22, 2013 2:20:16am

re: #4 CuriousLurker

I saw no such insinuation. He wasn’t speaking in general terms, he was talking specifically about racism—white-on-black racism and its history.

Referring to the text I originally quoted it’s obvious that he’s wrapped a little bow on her. She talks this way, therefore she thinks this way, therefore she’s exactly what’s wrong with the world and example of what “I am not”.

So if someone who disliked your mom/sister/daughter/wife walked up to her and called her the c-word, you’d just shrug it off (and expect her to shrug it off)? Somehow I doubt it.

If someone who disliked X walked up to her and demonstrated his dislike without even saying a word I wouldn’t shrug it off. Is c*nt different than bitch or witch or ill tempered or mean or smelly or oogie oogie?

This is absurd. Do you talk the same way here as you when speaking with family members at home? What about at work or when applying for a job? What about when pulled over by the police? What about at a party with friends?

What I do and what I should have to do are not the same thing. What you make clear by this statement is that we all lie all the time so people won’t know what we really think. It’s lame.

If we never censored ourselves there would likely be a lot more blood flowing in the streets every day than there already is.

I don’t disagree but should it be that way?

What word means exactly the same thing as n*****, with all of its history?

For example?

I’m not going to sit here and list a bunch of slurs that mean the same as the slur being discussed but you know there are lots and lots and lots. The point I made at the end is that everyone is fine if Paula Deen hates black people and thinks about it every single day as long as she doesn’t use a word someone thinks is offensive.

7 Locker  Sat, Jun 22, 2013 2:32:37am

I’m not at all surprised to hear opposition to my thoughts and that’s perfectly fine. Seems Bill Maher took up the same topic:

rawstory.com

His panel didn’t agree with him either and that’s also fine. I know people who think it’s ok to assault or even kill someone just for using that slur. They feel righteous and justified. It’s insane. It’s a word, it’s a sound your vocal cords and mouth make. The listener attaches meaning. The listener decides how they will react. The listener decides to ignore context or intent just to be offended and righteous.

The listener is responsible for all of that but still blames the speaker for “offending them” or “making them react”. Doesn’t work for me at all when I try to tell my wife “You made me feel bad when you did X.” Her response “I didn’t MAKE YOU feel anyway, you decided that all on your own.”

8 Absalom, Absalom, Obdicut  Sat, Jun 22, 2013 2:43:11am

re: #6 Locker

What’s actually being alleged is that those racist attitudes contributed to a working environment that was negative for the black staff, as well as her support of her sexist brother’s ludicrously inappropriate behavior towards women creating a working environment that was terrible for the female staff. That people were fired, punished, and otherwise negatively impacted by it.

She’s not being attacked for just saying stuff.

9 CuriousLurker  Sat, Jun 22, 2013 2:44:15am

re: #6 Locker

Referring to the text I originally quoted it’s obvious that he’s wrapped a little bow on her. She talks this way, therefore she thinks this way, therefore she’s exactly what’s wrong with the world and example of what “I am not”.

Isn’t that what you’re doing also, WRT Marshall?

If someone who disliked X walked up to her and demonstrated his dislike without even saying a word I wouldn’t shrug it off. Is c*nt different than bitch or witch or ill tempered or mean or smelly or oogie oogie?

Yes, it is different. Words have meaning and degrees of meaning.

What I do and what I should have to do are not the same thing. What you make clear by this statement is that we all lie all the time so people won’t know what we really think. It’s lame.

No one is forcing you to abide by society’s rules. Go ahead and be completely honest & uncensored 24/7 and let me know how it works out for you. //

I don’t disagree but should it be that way?

I think it has to be, for the reasons I already mentioned.

I’m not going to sit here and list a bunch of slurs that mean the same as the slur being discussed but you know there are lots and lots and lots.

No actually, I don’t know that. There are many other slurs used against black people, but none (that I know of) with the historical baggage of the n-word.

The point I made at the end is that everyone is fine if Paula Deen hates black people and thinks about it every single day as long as she doesn’t use a word someone thinks is offensive.

Sorry, but this is bullshit. To say that someone is fine with something because they have no knowledge of it makes no sense.

I used to watch & enjoy Deen’s show when I had cable, and nothing she ever said or did gave me reason to think she was racist. Now that has changed.

10 stabby  Sun, Jun 23, 2013 9:08:52am

re: #5 Locker

My entire comment is showing empathy towards the everyone in the world world. How we all make mistakes, all think stuff other people wouldn’t like and all say things we’d like to take back. You, on the other hand, show empathy with those who can’t control their reactions and blame them on other people.

I’ll take my empathy towards accepting the reality that each human is imperfect over your condescension and moral superiority.

I wasn’t talking in a moral sense at all, I was talking in a psychological sense.

Having a willingness to understand other people isn’t enough if you fail at the necessary perception and modeling.

11 stabby  Sun, Jun 23, 2013 9:12:09am

In Paula Deen’s case, she came from a wealthy family that owned a lot of slaves - and she tried to hire a bunch of black men to essentially play the part of slaves for her daughter’s wedding, and she referred to them as “n*****s”. And she said that she uses the word all the time, what’s the problem?

You can’t see why people are offended? Then you’re missing basic, normal perception and empathy.


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