The Paula Deen conflict, makes me wonder

Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by Irishdave, Jun 25, 2013.

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  1. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    I am wondering with the most recent deal with Paula Deen

    Not just with her, but when does the use of certain words used by a person rise to being a racist?
    We have:
    the n-word,
    Cracker,
    Redneck,
    Rag head,
    Mick,
    etc.

    Does the mere use of a word in any way Make someone a Racist?
    If the use was years ago does it make the person a life long racist?
    Is one word worse that another?
    Does one race using a word make it worse?
    Can a race use a word in regard to themselves and it is not racist?

    My grandmother used the n-word sometimes in what I would call a non hateful way, I would not call her a racist, she was born in 1900.

    Please keep comments professional
     
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  3. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    For me, Paula's practice of having black men wear white servant outfits and referring to them as, "kind of like slaves," is what made me think she was deeply racist.
     
  4. donziejo

    donziejo Devotee

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    Does anyone know if Paula really did have black men wear white servant outfits??? I've heard different things. The last I heard was that she asked (for her brother's wedding) blacks to dress in white for a plantation wedding.

    Dave, I don't use ugly words, but I do think it takes more then just using them to be racist. My AA kids use the N word often. I do not like it!!!!!!

    I don't think any of us should be using words like cracker ect....words hurt.
     
  5. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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  6. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    It sounds like she got fired by FN not for her language but for her publicity flap and how she just kept making things worse and worse for herself with all those weird videos and by skipping out on the Today show.
     
  7. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    I've only watched her cook show a handful of times ever & not in a LONG time. Well, if she's fired, she's fired. I never really cared for her either way anyway.

    Well that certainly isn't subtle! If that's not racist, I don't know what is.
     
  8. BumbleB

    BumbleB Habitué

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    There is a video circulating the news of Paula being interviewed in front of a large black printed backdrop. She shares that she has a "black friend" and describes him as "darker than this" and refers to the backdrop. Later, she asks him to come on stage and tells him "I can't see you next to that black backdrop!"

    I'm not repeating her interview word for word, but I think I got the gist of it. It's just inappropriate to be making comments about someone's race. It seems like that's all she sees when talking about her "friend". Pretty sad.

    Here is the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=0svowr0QYQY
     
  9. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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  10. Major

    Major Connoisseur

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    Paula Deen may have made a mistake....... like 99.999 percent of the population........ She is not perfect...... but I would love to have her as a neighbor ....... :)
     
  11. Jem

    Jem Aficionado

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    I'm finishing up working for Eventbrite, which allows people to distribute tickets for their events. We have a list of words that we do not allow people to use on the site in their titles, descriptions or team names.

    I once got a call from an attendee (someone buying a ticket) who was trying to enter his team name with his order. He wanted to call his team Redneck something, and the system wasn't letting him. Turns out that word was on our 'do not use' list, even in reference to one's self. So in that respect, it was considered a bad word even when someone was calling themselves it. We would have done the same with any of the words listed. I'm not sure where I stand on the situation, but I guess that's a pretty good stance.
     
  12. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    I think what I find so disturbing is that other celebrities use the N-word, as well as other racial slurs, yet they are still making movies and videos-thus making money.
    I am not condoning Paula's use of the N-word, but I find the media frenzy a bit overkill.
     
  13. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    It is my understanding that she never did this. She referenced an event she attended that had men and women dressed in servant outfits representing the Civil War era and when asked about it she did say she figures they were supposed to be slaves...but she did not herself practice this.

    There have been black people who know her speak up for her saying there is no way she is racist.

    Obviously I don't know her. I feel fairly neutral about her, but I certainly don't enjoy this whole situation. :(
     
  14. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    I don´t agree with what she said, but she has already apologized for it, and apparently doesn´t speak like that anymore. I don´t quite think it´s fair that she is losing so much over this. From my understanding she used that language 30 years ago and is sorry. We also have something called free speech, but this just shows that we truly don´t have free speech. I am not defending her actions, but I do feel that the punishment doesn´t fit the crime.
     
  15. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I think racially insensitive is a good way to describe how she may be.
     
  16. Miss84

    Miss84 Comrade

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    How is using the n-word NOT hateful? If you've used any of the words listed (and the others not listed), yes that makes you prejudice against a group of people for using those offensive words. People need to use more judgement and common sense before opening their mouth (and typing).
     
  17. Major

    Major Connoisseur

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    I don't use the n-word......... but how is it that blacks use the n-word with impunity?
     
  18. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I've heard it used without hate. For sure without hate.
     
  19. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    I agree with you...that word was a word to describe anyone of low morals and trashy no matter the color when I was a child. I remember this wonderful elderly lady in my town. She was a former slave that was given her freedom but chose to stay with her "family" and help with their hotel. When she stopped me and asked me to walk to the store for her, she introduced herself as N----- Mary. I told her I couldn't call her that, she informed me that was her name. I called her Miss Mary. She corrected me every time. I loved to hear her stories about the people who use to come to the hotel on the train. She lived her whole life there. The family made that a provision of the will. While they had called her that, she never saw it as wrong. To a ten year old chil of the 80s I couldn't bring myself to use it...and I knew my mother would kill me!
     
  20. Miss84

    Miss84 Comrade

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    I'd tread lightly with that if I were you.
    YES some of us "blacks" use this and say this is a term of endearment, or jokingly, etc. We've been taught to hate our own, and to treat our own with the same hateful words that were used against us during the time of slavery. It's shameful how some of our own treat each other, but do know that there are A LOT of well-educated, self-loving, African Americans that have pride in who we are and our people. I grew up not even hearing that word until I came to college, because I grew up in a family/community that was proud of being black and where we came from, so we wouldn't dare use that disgusting word amongst each other.
    How it's used or who uses it STILL DOESN'T MAKE IT RIGHT. Point blank.
    I'd advise you to go look up the history/meaning of the word. I don't care how you perceived it be, it's a hateful word.
     
  21. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Language is a funny thing... To answer the question, it's for some of the same reasons that military veterans (bless them) encountering one another informally en route to reunions may greet each other as "Ya old SOB" while slapping each other on the shoulder or otherwise conveying that they're glad to see the other; that case is a matter of dysphemism, or using a negative term positively.

    The additional wrinkle in the case of the n-word is related to the use of the b-word among women who don't intend to disparage one another: in both cases, the term is being applied by members of the group that it originally targeted for harm, and I suspect it's a matter of preemptive use and perhaps an effort to dilute the word's harm (which is considerable, in both cases) by taking it away from those who intended harm with it.

    Crucially, this sort of thing works only within a subgroup of people who already know each other well enough that they have already established that the others intend no malice. And the minute it seems that malice may in fact be intended after all, watch out.
     
  22. Major

    Major Connoisseur

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    I don't need to be to told to "tread lightly." What part of "I don't use the n-word do you not understand?" You really don't need to "advise" me on anything.
     
  23. Major

    Major Connoisseur

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    No malice intended with or without the n-word......... (and thank you for blessing me ........)
     
  24. alioxenfree

    alioxenfree Rookie

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    I agree with Miss84, though I can tell you the difference in the use of that hateful word from my point of view. When another black person says the n word around me, my ears perk up and I tell them to watch their language or that they shouldn't be saying that word around me. When a white person has said the word to me, there is a visceral, fight or flight reaction, because of the history behind the use of the word, I suppose. When a white person says it, I don't necessarily think he's/she's racist, depending on the context, but I will be leery of that person and always wonder.

    It's reminds me a little when I was younger and I felt justified when I complained about my brother. But if somebody outside the family was talking about him, they'd have a problem with me. People just needed to know to not mess with my brother. They could if they wanted to, but there would be consequences. And even then, the feeling of my brother being insulted was not as enraging as when I heard the n word because the n word is an attack on all of my family and all of black people as far as I see it. Anyone can use the n word or whatever word they want, but there will be consequences. Isaiah Washington found that out when he got fired from Grey's Anatomy for his use of the f word. This is not unprecedented.

    I don't think anyone should use the n word and I wouldn't use the other words you listed either. I know people want to be equal and fair, but I never understood why some white people, who say they don't like the word, justify its use by other white people by saying that black people use it too. I would think they'd say that black people shouldn't say it either, instead of saying that's why white people should be able to use it.

    As for Paula Deen, I think she's so racist, she doesn't know she's racist. While watching that interview where she was calling her great granddaddy's slaves "workers" and showing off her friend who was "as black as this board," I was starting to think she was going to take bids for him. That being said, she is free to say whatever she wants. However, when her attitude spills over to her hiring decisions, working conditions, and treatment of her employees, which is the basis of the lawsuit (which I read), it's a big problem. A lot of people keep saying that this is just about her using the "n word" way back when, but it's about way more than that.

    If some black people are justifying Paula Deen's behavior, that's their business. If you're a person who believes that their approval is a reason for her behavior to be acceptable, please keep in mind that there are plenty of us who find her behavior unacceptable and offensive.
     
  25. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    You're welcome, Major.

    The point, of course, is this: I don't have standing to utter "You old SOB" to most vets because I'm not one: they'd be entitled to infer that I meant a slur whether or not I do. You don't have standing to use the b-word to me without risk that I'll impute malice to you because (a) you're male and (b) you and I have nothing like that kind of relationship. (In fact, I had difficulty with that word in an email friendship: it took me weeks to be sure what was intended, and I could never quite give it back comfortably.) And (c) neither of us has standing to use the n-word without malice being assumed - whence Miss84's reaction, which precisely proves the point made in HeartDrama's link.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2013
  26. Miss84

    Miss84 Comrade

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    No need to catch an attitude, I'm giving you a different point of view on the statement YOU made.
     
  27. Miss84

    Miss84 Comrade

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    Agree!
     
  28. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I'm surprised that a few people have indicated they feel it's not okay to use the term redneck. Many in my family think being redneck is a great thing to be! My husband's nickname for my dad is High-tech Redneck. :)
     
  29. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    I think I can paraphrase the bible here

    'Paula Deen paid for our sins'

    I think there is just too much of a brouhaha over this

    Just how long does America have to pay for slavery?

    If my history of the world is right, WWI was one of the causes for WWII, so is this reverse racism going to cause more racism or a civil war?

     
  30. Miss84

    Miss84 Comrade

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    :eek: Wow.
    And on that note, this discussion has ended for me. Some of these comments have proved my personal opinions/views right.
     
  31. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    I guess we all now have many personal opinions/views proven right
     
  32. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Au contraire, Dave. Lincoln said it well:

    The war ended, to be sure, but the blood is nowhere near requited.
     
  33. Major

    Major Connoisseur

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    Thank you again, TG....... As I said I don't personally use the n-word..... nor do I use the b-word. (Actually I'm not 100% sure what you mean by the "b-word" but I'm confident I don't use it.)

    Your point (a) .... is correct........ although actually I might be considered an alpha male (admittedly I'm not perfect)....... and (b) we don't have that kind of relationship. And as for (c) I have no idea about Miss84's reaction to the with or without malice part ..... That's simply too deep for a retired geologist, geophysicist, and mathematician to comprehend......... :lol:
     
  34. MikeTeachesMath

    MikeTeachesMath Devotee

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    There's also a sociological phenomenon where a group of people "reclaims" a word that was previously used to suppress them and turns it into a word full of power for that group only.

    Some in the gay community have reclaimed the three-letter "f" word, just as some in the black community have reclaimed the "n" word.
     
  35. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Thank you for confirming that you don't use those words, Major. Nevertheless, you've offended Miss84: time to man up and apologize.

    For the record, racism still thrives much more than it ought, and in much more public venues even than A to Z: see this blog post by writer Jim C. Hines. (Warning: the language is a bit raw.)
     
  36. Major

    Major Connoisseur

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    So what is the correct number of years? 70,100,120, 200?

    I think it is time to move on........... Just my opinion......
     
  37. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    See the quote from Lincoln. We're not there yet, no.
     
  38. Major

    Major Connoisseur

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    I have no idea how I offended anyone ........ (intentionally or otherwise). :confused:
     
  39. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Really? How remarkable.
     
  40. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    There are a lot of words I wish no one would use, regardless of context. I especially don't like words that are okay for some people to say, but not others. There are plenty of words in existence to use in their stead.
     
  41. Major

    Major Connoisseur

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    I agree........
     
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