Political Correctness/Walking on Eggshells Page 6

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  • Dangerous_Dave 9 Sep 2013 14:04:41 21 posts
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    sajasanman wrote:
    Well, considering whether he's taking the piss or not there were actual hobbits, there are gigantic missing pieces about where we came from.
    Just for interest's sake. Hobbit like humanoids did exist until as recently as 12,000 years ago. Obviously not the LOTR type though.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homo_floresiensis

    Edited by Dangerous_Dave at 14:06:13 09-09-2013
  • Deleted user 10 September 2013 08:35:46
    One of the problems with cultural stereotyping is that it ends up attributing to culture characteristics that might have their basis in other areas, (such as economics, politics, climate, etc..)

    Ha-Joon Chang, in his book 'Bad Samaritans' has some excellent examples of cultural stereotypes from an earlier age that... might be surprising nowadays.

    Having toured lots of factories in a developing country, an Australian management consultant told the government officials who had invited him: 'My impression as to your cheap labour was soon disillusioned when I saw your people at work. No doubt they are lowly paid, but the return is equally so; to see your men at work made me feel that you are a very satisfied easy-going race who reckon time is no object. When I spoke to some managers they informed me that it was impossible to change the habits of national heritage.'

    This Australian consultant was understandably worried that then workers of the country he was visiting did not have the right work ethic. In fact, he was being quite polite. He could have been blunt and just called them lazy. No wonder the country was poor—not dirt poor, but with an income level that was less than a quarter of Australia’s.....

    The country in question, however, was Japan in 1915. It doesn’t feel quite right that someone from Australia (a nation known today for its ability to have a good time) could call the Japanese lazy. But this is how most westerners saw Japan a century ago.
    Similarly:

    After her tour of Asia in 1911–1912, Beatrice Webb, the famous leader of British Fabian socialism, described the Japanese as having 'objectionable notions of leisure and a quite intolerable personal independence'. She said that, in Japan, 'there is evidently no desire to teach people to think'. She was even more scathing about my ancestors. She described the Koreans as '12 millions of dirty, degraded, sullen, lazy and religionless savages who slouch about in dirty white garments of the most inept kind and who live in filthy mudhuts'. No wonder she thought that 'if anyone can raise the Koreans out of their present state of barbarism I think the Japanese will', despite her rather low opinion of the Japanese. This was not just a western prejudice against eastern peoples. The British used to say similar things about the Germans. Before their economic take-off in the mid-19th century, the Germans were typically described by the British as 'a dull and heavy people'. 'Indolence' was a word that was frequently associated with the Germanic nature. Mary Shelley, the author of Frankenstein, wrote in exasperation after a particularly frustrating altercation with her German coach-driver: the Germans never hurry'. It wasn’t just the British. A French manufacturer who employed German workers complained that they 'work as and when they please'.
    One could argue that the culture of these countries has changed over a century due to industrialization - or alternatively, that these attributes are the result of economic conditions rather than cultural ones. Or both...

    Edited by EndlessSolitude at 08:37:14 10-09-2013
  • Deleted user 10 September 2013 08:58:58
    Still, the stereotypes that individuals have of their own people, can be intriguing:

    The Anglo-Saxon is a pirate, a land robber and a sea robber. Underneath his thin coating of culture, he is what he was in Morgan's time, in Drake's time, in William's time, in Alfred's time. The blood and the tradition of Hengist and Horsa are in his veins. In battle he is subject to the blood-lusts of the Berserkers of old. Plunder and booty fascinate him immeasurably. The schoolboy of to-day dreams the dream of Clive and Hastings. The Anglo-Saxon is strong of arm and heavy of hand, and he possesses a primitive brutality all his own. There is a discontent in his blood, an unsatisfaction that will not let him rest, but sends him adventuring over the sea and among the lands in the midst of the sea. He does not know when he is beaten, wherefore the term "bulldog" is attached to him, so that all may know his unreasonableness. He has "some care as to the purity of his ways, does not wish for strange gods, nor juggle with intellectual phantasmagoria." He loves freedom, but is dictatorial to others, is self-willed, has boundless energy, and does things for himself. He is also a master of matter, an organizer of law, and an administrator of justice.
    (Jack London, Revolution and Other Essays).


    As for the Aryans, it is distressing... “They need to be told everything with a neon sign”... These days what sort of animal is it, I ask you, that is stupider? ...that is more thick-headed than the Aryan? What Zoo would take him in?... Paradise?...

    The Aryan has no bravado... He is brave only in war...he’s timid in normal life...a sheep...
    (L.F. Céline, Trifles for a Massacre, pages 76 & 94).


    Or my favourite:

    Pious fanatical zealots, throttled by Talmud coil,
    Impious, lecherous sceptics, cynical stalkers of spoil,
    Wedded ’neath Hebrew awning, buried ’neath Hebrew sod,
    Between not a dream of duty, never a glimpse of God.
    Blarneying, shivering, crawling, taking all colours and none,
    Lying, a fox in the covert; leaping, an ape in the sun.”
    (Israel Zangwill, quoted in W. Joyce, Twilight Over England, page 57.)

    Edited by EndlessSolitude at 08:59:55 10-09-2013
  • Mr-Brett 10 Sep 2013 09:10:05 12,723 posts
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    Some amazing quotes EndlessSolitude, thanks for sharing.

    Portable view - Never forget.

  • RedSparrows 10 Sep 2013 12:31:24 22,104 posts
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    Beatrice Webb is always good for a quote if you want sweeping judgements :)
  • DrStrangelove 11 Sep 2013 01:43:16 3,405 posts
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    DodgyPast wrote:
    Is it racist to say that Asian cultures tend to be more racist than Western European cultures?
    From my experience, no. China is one of the last countries to believe that all of humanity didn't evolve from the same African "Eve", similarly to how my own Germany did some decades ago. I heard from more than one friends of Japanese who behaved in tourist locations like superhumans who had every right to punch and kick natives. Germans for example are known for always complaining, always being negative about everything, even being antisocial, but they're not usually known internationally for physically abusing people (not talking about history, just present with tourists etc.).
  • DrStrangelove 11 Sep 2013 01:44:55 3,405 posts
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    Oh why is it that the threads I start in full conscience do not deserve a single reply, while my near-dead drunken threads go on and on?
  • DrStrangelove 11 Sep 2013 01:46:35 3,405 posts
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  • DrStrangelove 11 Sep 2013 02:50:01 3,405 posts
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    @EndlessSolitude

    But (I think) that's what I'm talking about. I'm not saying people can't change. Germany is imho a pretty good example of that. It changed from German Empire over unwilling democracy over Nazism to what is now a truly western democracy, and may I add, one that is more concerned about civil rights than most others. Much more so than America, which was for some time the motherland of democracy and civil rights. But in the past, 80, 90, 100 years ago, would you have denied a deeper cultural problem? If you would have, you'd have been naive.

    People's ability to change is astonishing. But that's even more reason to keep trying. I believe in integration, not only others being assimilated by us, but truly being integrated while keeping their own culture if they wish so. I believe by absorbing theirs our cultures will profit too.

    Problem is, some "politically correct" people claim there were no problems. The more muslims (or whatever else), the better. But you can't deny that among a lot of muslim immigrants there is what we consider suppression of women. Again, not of all--I know enough muslims who seem to be more open than the narrow-minded public--but there's still a considerable number of fully-veiled women. Fully-veiled in the sense that only their eyes are visible.

    That shows even many leftists their limits. For all the goodwill of inviting immigrants, they often have great problems with gender inequality (rightfully so, imo--I consider myself a leftist btw). It doesn't strain only the gender egalism of the left, it also strains Christian-conservative values, it strains liberal ideals, in addition to rightists who hate foreigners anyway. All in all, there's so much rejection, for good or bad reasons, right or wrong, that it threatens to become explosive stuff. When there's a few, there'd be no problem probably, but when there's a great lot, danger is that parallel societies (I know, another polemically abused word, but again one with a background) form. And with them, anti-parallel-societies.

    Aside from cultural differences, there is the problem of cultural/ethnic confrontation. I grew up in multi-ethnic classes. Half were German, few were Turks, a few Poles, a Moroccan, a Yugoslav, etc. That was all great, because there was no basis for rivalling groups to form on, and my friends were as mixed as that. Other friends of mine grew up in less harmonic communities though, more often than not split into German and Turkish groups, increasingly fighting each other with age instead of approaching each other, with lots of hatred, and I can even understand each side emotionally, if not rationally.

    In my class, multi-culturalism worked because there were Germans and a colourful mix of non-Germans. In most of my friends', it didn't, because a polarity between two dominating ethnicities/cultures developed. There was no understanding, and more importantly, no will for understanding.

    Again, what I'm trying to say is, it's great to be open, but you must not be blind to actual, undeniable problems. No matter by whom those problems are in the end caused. And that's my criticism. The leftists I spoke of, most of them who I learned to know, denied there were any problems except for discrimination by majority against minority, and that everything will be fine.

    But it won't. Approach will take time, and on the way there there may be lots of separation, dissension, even violence. But that is something that most of my leftist friends utterly and fundamentally denied. Everything would be fine once we got rid of our fascist-conservative mainstream ideology. And my impression is that this mindset has conquered public opinion, or at least politics' opinion.

    I want us all to learn to live with each other, and that's the reason why I want to acknowledge problems. Because you can't understand each other without learning to know both their good and bad sides.

    I should stop talking incoherent rubbish, but sadly I'm out of beer. Sorry.

    Edited by DrStrangelove at 03:01:23 11-09-2013
  • muttler 11 Sep 2013 07:15:42 3,948 posts
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    DrStrangelove wrote:
    I heard from more than one friends of Japanese who behaved in tourist locations like superhumans who had every right to punch and kick natives.
    Bullshit.
  • FWB 11 Sep 2013 07:58:09 43,884 posts
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    Berlin has been a centre of democracy, fascism, communism, nationalism, liberalism... you name it, they've done it. Within ten years they switched from a very liberal society to that of the Nazis. Then another ten years out the other side with a swing towards Communism and then a few decades later back against where they started. Quite the 20th century there.
  • Dangerous_Dave 11 Sep 2013 08:21:51 21 posts
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    DrStrangelove wrote:
    I heard from more than one friends of Japanese who behaved in tourist locations like superhumans who had every right to punch and kick natives.

    Really now?

    Edited by Dangerous_Dave at 08:22:50 11-09-2013
  • Tonka 11 Sep 2013 08:42:55 20,029 posts
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    I'm trying to picture a japanese person with the build of a superhuman
    /racist

    If you can read this you really need to fiddle with your forum settings.

  • urban 11 Sep 2013 08:44:23 10,926 posts
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    I didn't know there wasn't such a thing as an actress anymore, they are all Actors?
  • Metalfish 11 Sep 2013 09:12:44 8,798 posts
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    urban wrote:
    I didn't know there wasn't such a thing as an actress anymore, they are all Actors?
    I'm a male governess.
  • Deleted user 11 September 2013 09:30:30
    In my class, multi-culturalism worked because there were Germans and a colourful mix of non-Germans. In most of my friends', it didn't, because a polarity between two dominating ethnicities/cultures developed. There was no understanding, and more importantly, no will for understanding.
    That's a very important point. When you have just two cultures or creeds, there tends to be great potential for conflict - be it Catholics vs Protestants in Ireland, Flemings vs Walloons in Belgium, Jews vs Muslims in Israel/Palestine, Tamils vs Sinhalese in Sri Lanka, Hutus vs. Tutsis in Rwanda, Sunnis vs Shias in Syria, Iraq, Bahrain, Pakistan, Hell, etc...

    Part of the reason is that each community sees that there is only one obstacle to its utopia - the other community. Add to that the projection of all sorts of negative qualities to the other, and the potential for violence becomes quite high.

    A strong argument can be made that such societies might benefit mightily from a significant influx of migrants who belong to neither community, (imagine if there were two million Buddhists in Northern Ireland, or two million Christians in Palestine..) The migrants could thereby create a buffer between the two warring sides... and over time, the tensions of a bipolar system could be replaced by a more relaxed multicultural society.

    Or we could have a three-sided conflict, like Starcraft or Earth 2150...

    But you can't deny that among a lot of muslim immigrants there is what we consider suppression of women.
    I'd have thought that if anything, the mutilation of children (circumcision) that Muslims (and some others) practice, would be even more shocking to Europeans of all political types, (and indeed, to non-Muslims in general). Yet you surely remember the outcry when a German court tried to ban the practice...

    Edited by EndlessSolitude at 10:32:17 11-09-2013
  • twelveways 11 Sep 2013 10:14:18 3,881 posts
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    PazJohnMitch wrote:
    Not found anyone that is happy with the term "Chink" though. Also the suggestion that the colour "Yellow" is cowardish does not go down well in China. (Discovered that the Chinese do have the term "Chinese Whispers" but they either say Korean or Japanese instead).
    I called some of my Chinese friends chinks in (good humoured) retaliation at them calling me Laowai, it didn't bother them in the slightest, they actually thought it sounded cute.
  • twelveways 11 Sep 2013 10:19:28 3,881 posts
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    I remember I was at a teacher training session in Beijing, we were playing a game where the trainer would call out a colour (in Chinese) and we had to touch something of that colour. They called out 'yellow' and a Chinese girl grabbed my hand and said "touch me, I'm yellow". I was a bit apprehensive to say the least and the (American) trainer berated me for it despite the Chinese in the room saying that it didn't bother them.
  • RedSparrows 11 Sep 2013 10:35:32 22,104 posts
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    'PC' is as much a noun as an adjective now: people use it as a shield, either to protect people, either to good or ill-effect, or to protect their own ill-founded twat assumptions, and to give the privileged a sense of being under attack, so they can all write to the Mail and bemoan how shit their life is.
  • Grax 11 Sep 2013 10:37:55 1,846 posts
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    Whenever I read this thread avenue q's everyone's a little bit rasict starts to play in my head. It really does encompass the whole of debate really
  • kalel 11 Sep 2013 10:41:03 86,449 posts
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    RedSparrows wrote:
    'PC' is as much a noun as an adjective now: people use it as a shield, either to protect people, either to good or ill-effect, or to protect their own ill-founded twat assumptions, and to give the privileged a sense of being under attack, so they can all write to the Mail and bemoan how shit their life is.
    It's a pejorative. Being PC no longer means being literally politically correct. It means being too politically correct.
  • RedSparrows 11 Sep 2013 10:42:45 22,104 posts
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    Yes, which is where the second 'group' seems relevant.

    You get people saying anything is 'PC', if, in effect, they simply don't like it and it's about culture or something.

    Meanwhile they happily consume horror movies, porn, the internet, etc etc.
  • twelveways 11 Sep 2013 10:49:12 3,881 posts
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    Political correctness has always been a noun
  • Metalfish 11 Sep 2013 10:52:52 8,798 posts
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    Poltical correctness has always been a pejorative. It was originally an attack on the perceived censorship of language. If at any point it has become/is an earnestly accepted term, it's because it describes something there wasn't really a word for before, even if it exists as two linked, but almost opposite ideas.
  • RedSparrows 11 Sep 2013 10:53:35 22,104 posts
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    twelveways wrote:
    Political correctness has always been a noun
    Yeah, I don't know where I was going with that :D
  • kalel 11 Sep 2013 10:56:26 86,449 posts
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    It's probably come full circle. At one point it was pretty common to criticise things for not being politically correct, the implication being that political correctness was a good thing.
  • nickthegun 11 Sep 2013 11:09:53 58,949 posts
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    I blame Ben Elton.

    ---------------------------------------------------------
    He totally called it

  • MrTomFTW Moderator 11 Sep 2013 11:17:58 37,425 posts
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    Does the thread title make anyone else think of Katrina and the Waves?

    We're walking on eggshells, woah-oh...

    Follow me on Twitter: @MrTom
    Voted by the community "Best mod" 2011, 2012 and 2013.

  • BeardedGamerUK 11 Sep 2013 11:20:16 1,304 posts
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    @MrTomFTW Most people in this thread probably weren't even alive when that song was in the charts :D But yes it did make me think of the original song :)
  • DrStrangelove 11 Sep 2013 17:09:33 3,405 posts
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    muttler wrote:
    DrStrangelove wrote:
    I heard from more than one friends of Japanese who behaved in tourist locations like superhumans who had every right to punch and kick natives.
    Bullshit.
    Yup, you're right. That was stupid. I should know better than jumping to conclusions based on the witnessing of a few individual cases.

    Not least because I know that hotel staff often falls victim to some people living out their ugliest antisocial inclinations. I have another friend working in a hotel restaurant in Germany, and she was threatened with beating several times already, by non-Japanese people. That in some hotels in far away poor countries like Indonesia and India there may happen actual violence could almost be expected, be the "guests" Japanese or not.

    I apologise, and will try to be a bit more careful in the future.
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