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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Harrison Ford defends use of n-word in Jackie Robinson biopic ’42?: ‘It’s historically accurate’

Well…it ain’t Nixon.

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Moviegoers will see the hardships Robinson endured during his endeavor to integrate an all-white sport, including repeatedly being called racial slurs like the n-word.

Ford says the n-word was tastefully used in 42, and was necessary in telling the story of Robinson.

“It’s historically accurate,” Ford told theGrio’s Chris Witherspoon. “This is a film about a period of time, and about redeeming that period of time in which it was conventional and common to hear that word and others in characterization of people. The characters that we played worked hard to create circumstances in which that word couldn’t be used, but you can’t make a movie about applesauce without talking about apples.”

When asked if he thinks audience members from 42 will be offended by the when they hear the n-word in the film, Ford said, “No. I don’t think they will.”

“Just to hear the word is a powerful emotional reaction from many people… me included. If the circumstances that we’re talking about and the character that I play hadn’t worked with Jackie Robinson to change white baseball, the civil rights movement wouldn’t have happened as quickly as it did. So this is about racism, it’s about civil rights.”

Repoz Posted: March 27, 2013 at 06:30 PM | 230 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: film, history

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   101. The Good Face Posted: March 28, 2013 at 02:09 PM (#4398575)
When Katy Perry covered “Niggas in Paris” during a BBC television performance in March, she replaced the word nigga, which appears several times in the verses, with ninja.


Huh. Never heard of using ninja as a substitute. Back in the early days of World of Warcraft, some people would use "naga," named after the ubiquitous snake monsters that populated the game. This led to such hilarious guild names as "Naga Gave Me Harpies".
   102. mex4173 Posted: March 28, 2013 at 03:49 PM (#4398646)

Huh. Never heard of using ninja as a substitute. Back in the early days of World of Warcraft, some people would use "naga," named after the ubiquitous snake monsters that populated the game. This led to such hilarious guild names as "Naga Gave Me Harpies".


"Naga Stole My Bike" was the popular one on my server.
   103. Morty Causa Posted: March 28, 2013 at 04:29 PM (#4398667)
Pinker would probably also make the point that the increased focus on politically correct language is evidence of our increasing levels of empathy, and that in turn has led to a decrease in violence.


Pinker defended Larry Summers.
   104. Morty Causa Posted: March 28, 2013 at 04:41 PM (#4398671)
   105. Greg K Posted: March 28, 2013 at 07:14 PM (#4398755)
The discussion about mutual knowledge in that link is interesting (to me anyway) as I've been reading a lot lately on the presentation of self and the legitimizing of political authority in the 17th century. I'm thinking particularly of his section on mutual knowledge and overthrowing dictators.

In a society without much formalized hierarchy, political authority was derived from your ability to wear one of various available hats through dress, speech, personal carriage, where you sat in a room, ability to lay claim to somewhat ambiguously defined virtues like "duty", "disinterested concern for the welfare of the commonwealth" etc. The key wasn't so much the ability to prove authenticity in any of this, but plausibility. In a formal setting like an assize session, you could present yourself as disinterested in a particular case, knowing that in fact you are not. Your audience knows this front is not "authentic", you know that they know that it is not "authentic", but so long as it is plausible (ie. you are able to maintain a convincing superficial adherence to the role you are playing, or you are able to present a convincing definition of, say "duty"), your authority is legitimate. The indirect language of legitimization offered a kind of venue for tensions between domination, consent, and submission to play out. Without the legalized bureaucratic hierarchy, or the military power to enforce order, political authority relied on constant displays of submission. But the necessary participation of the ruled in these displays gave them some agency. The political authority had to maintain a certain level of plausibility for the display not to back-fire, and the lack of physical force behind the claim to authority to become apparent.
   106. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: March 28, 2013 at 07:36 PM (#4398769)
In a formal setting like an assize session,


"Base knave, thine hinder is false!"
   107. Greg K Posted: March 28, 2013 at 07:48 PM (#4398774)

"Base knave, thine hinder is false!"

Calling a dude a knave during quarter sessions would certainly be one way to forfeit the plausibility of your claim to dispassionate authority!
   108. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 28, 2013 at 09:08 PM (#4398820)
I would have expected Andy to know this, but DiMaggio's nickname was "The big Dag" pronounced dayg as in Dago. It definitely wasn't restricted to Italian teammates.

   109. Accent Shallow Posted: March 28, 2013 at 09:28 PM (#4398835)
[97] I know quite a few black people who use ninja

. . .to strike fear into the hearts of their enemies?
   110. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 28, 2013 at 09:53 PM (#4398860)
I would have expected Andy to know this, but DiMaggio's nickname was "The big Dag" pronounced dayg as in Dago. It definitely wasn't restricted to Italian teammates.

Interesting. I'd never heard that before, but I did find one reference to it in a 1997 interview with Tommy Henrich. OTOH although Henrich said that "we got away" with calling him that (and in return, Joe called Henrich a "Krauthead"), it's not hard to infer from the article that the "we" referred only to his few close friends on the team. The article mentioned Rizzuto, Berra, and Jerry Coleman as being in the interview along with Henrich: Two Italians, one veteran (Henrich) who'd been with the Yanks since Joe's second season, and one who was a widely admired WW2 combat veteran (Coleman). Language like that among teammates, even back then, implies a certain amount of closeness, and Dimaggio had very few close friends in the clubhouse. And outside the clubhouse, I'd strongly suspect that while someone like Toots Shor might have called him "big dag" while he was serving him his 5th complimentary drink of the night, that sort of familiarity wasn't allowed to more than a handful of people, and certainly not to any stranger.

As for Marilyn Monroe....now that's a good question....(smile)
   111. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 28, 2013 at 10:15 PM (#4398876)

Interesting. I'd never heard that before, but I did find one reference to it in a 1997 interview with Tommy Henrich.


http://books.google.com/books?id=-nQGCE9yjO0C&pg=PA108&lpg=PA108&dq=the+big+dago+dimaggio&source=bl&ots=7uM-YnXnh2&sig=ztw9JRI07HCxHCKNtS4md55jGvs&hl=en&sa=X&ei=VfhUUayiKI-w0AGIhIDgBQ&ved=0CE0Q6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=the big dago dimaggio&f=false

Here's a link to a book, "Joe Dimaggio: The Hero's Life" that goes into the nickname a bit.

Apparently Lazzeri and Crosetti were "Big Dago" and "Little Dago" before DiMaggio came along, and then DiMaggio was just "Dago" or "Daig". It doesn't sound like it was limited in usage.

Later, DiMaggio became "Big Dago" and Rizzuto was "Little Dago".
   112. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 28, 2013 at 11:13 PM (#4398910)
Snapper, I still suspect that there were several factors going on here.

First, the Yankees had more Italians than any other team**, which by itself probably helped defuse the situation. And Lazzeri and Crosetti were also from the San Francisco area***, plus Gomez, who was a hometown hero while Dimaggio was still in high school.

Second, Gomez was the unofficial Yankee designated clown, and had seniority over Dimaggio. He helped break down Joe's reserve, visited him back home during the offseason, and was likely considered almost part of Joe's family, a kind of honorary big brother.

I'm not saying that nobody else but those few (and McCarthy) used that term around him, but I doubt that it was quite as universal as those tales told by his closest (and largely Italian) teammates might suggest. Anyway, I'm glad you brought it up, since that Cramer book is one of the few major bios that I've never bothered to read.


**I've mentioned this before, I know, but in 1950 the Yankees' four best players (Rizzuto, Berra, Dimaggio and Raschi) were all Italian. I doubt that that bit of coincidental trivia has ever been duplicated before or since. On the largely Italian block that I was born on in Manhattan, the Yankees were the overwhelming team of choice, with the exception of a few liberal types who rooted for the Dodgers because of Jackie Robinson.

***Though according to the possibly apocryphal story, when the three of them drove cross-country for Dimaggio's first Yankee training camp, the only words they exchanged on the entire trip were "You drive" and "Your turn". And since Dimaggio didn't drive, he didn't even join in that gabfest.
   113. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 28, 2013 at 11:33 PM (#4398915)
My guess, Andy, is that it was much more widespread. Even in the 70s and 80s when I was growing up, it was pretty common for us to use that kind of ethnic slur with our classmates. Polak, Wop, Mick, and Hebe were certainly not fighting words. Two generations earlier, I'd guess they were rampant; if the people of that generation I knew are representative, very rampant.
   114. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: March 29, 2013 at 02:20 AM (#4398942)
Tarantino movies use everything gratuitously.

Boy howdy.


Reservoir Dogs was very well done, a terrific B, especially solid in the relationship between Keitel and Roth, the overall grubby milieu, the layers of storytelling, and the use of space and color in the warehouse scenes. So much after Dogs, though, was a whole lot of effort to tell the frothiest of stories. Except for Jules' road to enlightenment, maybe, Pulp Fiction is all about licking the foam on the five dollar milk shake. Movies don't have to be about other than titillating their audiences, but if they aren't, don't expect the applause to last more than briefly.

I re-watched Kill Bill recently with a friend and it's awfully good, for what it is; it just isn't all that much. Even the ballyhooed fight scenes between Beatrix and the Crazy 88 aren't much compared to similar fight scenes in the first Drunken Master. Tarantino gets giggles, winces, and shrugs. Jackie Chan gets well-deserved awe. When your subject matter and characters don't matter to anyone, you better get the choreography and cinematography right, and QT misses on both counts.

He's an interesting writer and director, but he's not an interesting guy, which I think is why his movies are rarely about anyone who could exist outside 24 frames a second. Tarantino seems like one of those people who spent more time in front of tv and movie screens than anywhere else. Films are all he knows, so films are all his films are about.

I happen to enjoy his work, and the success of Dogs and Pulp opened up moviemaking. His work just doesn't mean much of anything, though. I was surprised when he said he won't stay in movies all that much longer. What else could he do?
   115. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: March 29, 2013 at 07:49 AM (#4398961)
Quentin Tarantino hit the lottery, and then, pissed it all away because he is a hack. He writes his stories with one hand caressing his lap. His POV is that of a 14 year old asthmatic who can't go out and play with the other kids. One masturbatory
fantasy after another.
   116. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 29, 2013 at 08:17 AM (#4398968)
My guess, Andy, is that it was much more widespread. Even in the 70s and 80s when I was growing up, it was pretty common for us to use that kind of ethnic slur with our classmates. Polak, Wop, Mick, and Hebe were certainly not fighting words. Two generations earlier, I'd guess they were rampant; if the people of that generation I knew are representative, very rampant.

But again, there's a difference between using those words among friends, which was the case in your neighborhood and many others, and having strangers or non-friends in general use them. It's not all that different from when black people address each other with the n-word; if it's among friends, it's one thing, but if it's not among friends---and especially if it's coming from a non-black person---it's a completely different matter.

Let's assume you're Italian. If an Irish friend you grew up with calls you "Dag", or if you call him "Mick" (even if his real name is Dan), it may shock an outsider who overheard your exchange, but since you both know where you're coming from and are longstanding friends, neither of you give it a second thought. But what happens if someone from outside your circle of friends says the same thing? Then it's not the same thing, and your reaction would be much less accepting.
   117. formerly dp Posted: March 29, 2013 at 08:37 AM (#4398977)
He writes his stories with one hand caressing his lap. His POV is that of a 14 year old asthmatic who can't go out and play with the other kids. One masturbatory fantasy after another.
I agree with this to some extent, but still immensely enjoyed D'jango.
   118. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 29, 2013 at 09:25 AM (#4398996)
The best ten minutes you'll ever spend on the meaning of language

Yes, that's great stuff.

Does this sound like he's PC type?

To some extent, yes. I think it's pretty clear that he believes that maintaining polite fictions by using innuendo is not a bad thing. It helps maintain civil society. Total honesty all the time would be terrible.

Are you going to answer any of the questions I've asked?
   119. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 29, 2013 at 09:47 AM (#4399018)
But again, there's a difference between using those words among friends, which was the case in your neighborhood and many others, and having strangers or non-friends in general use them. It's not all that different from when black people address each other with the n-word; if it's among friends, it's one thing, but if it's not among friends---and especially if it's coming from a non-black person---it's a completely different matter.

I definitely agree there was a difference between friendly usage, and intended insult. My point is that none of the slurs exchanged among the various white ethnicities were "fighting words" to the extent "nigga" has become. Likewise, I don't think "wetback", "PR", "chink", "slope", "gook", etc. have been given that unique status. The treatment of "nigga" is a complete overreaction.

Talking to my father, in his generation in the Bronx, the worstb thing you could call someone and not automatically start a fight was c***sucker. If you went to mother f*****, fisticufss were imminent. Ethnic slurs weren't even in the ballpark of those two.
   120. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 29, 2013 at 10:44 AM (#4399073)
I definitely agree there was a difference between friendly usage, and intended insult. My point is that none of the slurs exchanged among the various white ethnicities were "fighting words" to the extent "nigga" has become. Likewise, I don't think "wetback", "PR", "chink", "slope", "gook", etc. have been given that unique status. The treatment of "nigga" is a complete overreaction.

Gotta disagree with that if you're talking about non-close friends doing the insulting. Every one of those words, plus "wop", "dago", "Mick", "Jew Boy" and "kike", would have gotten the same reaction as "nigger". "Cocksucker" and "motherfucker" at one point were fighting words on that level, but they've lost a lot of their sting from sheer overuse and passing into the mainstream**. I'm not saying that it wasn't different in your father's neighborhood and generation, but I'm just talking about the sort of environments I've been used to.

**Both "nigger " and "motherfucker" have actually had entire books devoted to their evolution and the infinite ways in which they've been used over the years.
   121. PerroX Posted: March 29, 2013 at 10:50 AM (#4399079)
Political correctness is mostly about tact and respect, so, no, it's not evil. Of course, some people abuse it, but that doesn't mean the general concept is wrong.


Andy pointed out its origins in leftist infighting long before the reactionaries ran with it. The 'general concept' is that political correctness is inherently a power trip, along the lines of #105, by people using politeness to gain the submission of their opponent.

Now, I often feel like telling Morty to shut up already, but I take his side on this issue. We're not in kindergarten anymore, boys.
   122. PerroX Posted: March 29, 2013 at 10:52 AM (#4399081)
Quentin Tarantino hit the lottery, and then, pissed it all away because he is a hack.


What did he piss away exactly? He can make a big-budget movie anytime he wants, and Hollywood will give him little gold statues for it. And girls will line up for him to suck their toes.
   123. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 29, 2013 at 10:56 AM (#4399085)
Now, I often feel like telling Morty to shut up already, but I take his side on this issue. We're not in kindergarten anymore, boys.

What is his side, exactly? That's what I don't get.
   124. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:05 AM (#4399093)
If people don't answer my questions and points I raise I feel no obligation to engage in cherry-picked objections that don't even attempt to address the totality of the argument presented. I'm not going to be the servant of a one-way reciprocation that exists only in your mind. Being inquisitorial without argument doesn't make me take you seriously.

I say this:

Why not? Steven Pinker makes the incontestable (to me) point that it isn't the word, it's the feeling. Even if you could magically eradicate the word, as long as the feeling exists, a word will be found, and it will be taken vehement exception to.

You reply:

Pinker would probably also make the point that the increased focus on politically correct language is evidence of our increasing levels of empathy, and that in turn has led to a decrease in violence.

Now, read both carefully. What does your response have to do with your quote of me?

But:

What are your questions as they related to what I wrote?

(Remember, I'm not saying restrictions in subject matter or subject or the way a subject is talked about don't exist in other relationships (ala Pinker. I say they have no place in a serious intellectual discourse.)

The discussion here, like with the rape discussion, men's rights, etc., immediately devolved into one about objecting to the substance of what someone says, how outrage some were that yadda yadda yadda, then about personalities and insult.

One of things I would like is that all comments be classified as being made by "Anonymous." People take these blogs much too much as occasion to strut their stuff on the dance floor.
   125. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:06 AM (#4399095)
What is his side, exactly? That's what I don't get.


Then you are a) not reading and b) not engaging in a serious back and forth. Look, if you have a case, make it. Don't expect me to make it for you negatively. Again, the attitude doesn't encourage me to take you seriously. You don't assume it's a serious subject (with probably only a take you agree with as being serious), so, like so many here, just kibbitz.

   126. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:13 AM (#4399104)
And I also didn't answer because it looked like the discussion had moved on--I was bending my knee to your sense of decorum.
   127. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:15 AM (#4399107)
Oh please. I've asked you for specific examples. You keep saying that you hate political correctness, but it's not at all clear what the context is or how that applies to real world situations.

What is "serious intellectual discourse"? No one is going to object to using a word like n***** in a discussion of the meaning and history of the word. But when people talk about political correctness, 99% of the time they're referring to ordinary conversation and interaction.
   128. Bitter Mouse Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:15 AM (#4399108)
What is his side, exactly? That's what I don't get.


I am on record as never being sure what Morty is talking about. I had a manager like that, he would speak to me and when he was done I never knew what the heck he was talking about. He liked me well enough (and I him), but I was very glad I was half a country away, very self sufficient, and he was not a micro-manager (it helps I am in a technical field and he was clueless on the technology side) - so most of the time it didn't matter I had no idea what the heck he was talking about (plus other people had the same problem with him so it wasn't just me).
   129. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:18 AM (#4399112)
Now, I often feel like telling Morty to shut up already, but I take his side on this issue. We're not in kindergarten anymore, boys.

What is his side, exactly? That's what I don't get.

Yet, you're confident enough of your sense of the matter to make all sorts of objections and interjections and to draw conclusions?
   130. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:22 AM (#4399115)
127:

And, again, you just ignore what I say. I said in my post recent post to you that this only applies to intellectual discourse on public issues. I have said this time after time on issue after issue. Can you grok that?

What is "serious intellectual discourse"? No one is going to object to using a word like n***** in a discussion of the meaning and history of the word. But when people talk about political correctness, 99% of the time they're referring to ordinary conversation and interaction.


No.

   131. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:25 AM (#4399118)
Well that's helpful.
   132. Bitter Mouse Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:27 AM (#4399121)
Yet, you're confident enough of your sense of the matter to make all sorts of objections and interjections and to draw conclusions?


Have you been on the internet (and specifically this site) long?
   133. Bitter Mouse Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:34 AM (#4399124)
And, again, you just ignore what I say. I said in my post recent post to you that this only applies to intellectual discourse on public issues. I have said this time after time on issue after issue. Can you grok that?


Helpful hint. If someone says they are not understanding, then deriding them and refusing to engage is not helpful. Restating* what you think they don't understand (or even asking for clarification on what they don't understand) can be helpful.

Communication is a two way street, both sides need to work to be understood. It is helpful when one party says they don't understand, because that gives a signal to you that maybe the problem is not disagreement but lack of understanding.

* This means go back to your central premise and use different words and maybe an example. Your posts often devolve into florid prose about ... well I am not sure what they are about.
   134. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:42 AM (#4399130)
What is "serious intellectual discourse"? No one is going to object to using a word like n***** in a discussion of the meaning and history of the word. But when people talk about political correctness, 99% of the time they're referring to ordinary conversation and interaction.


No.

Well, then, who here has objected to the n-word being used in "42"?

Who here has objected to its use in literature?

What's been objected to is the bogus idea that if many black people routinely use the word among themselves (in countless different meanings and with radically differing motivations), that makes it okay for white people to use it as well as an insult in ordinary interaction. That's so palpably silly a concept that not even you believe it.

So when do you think it's okay to use that word and when do you think it isn't? Get specific.

And beyond that, what sort of real world examples of "political correctness" might you be talking about? As so often is the case, you love to generalize and throw out abstract thoughts, but when it gets down to specifics you're not quite as forthcoming.
   135. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:44 AM (#4399131)
* This means go back to your central premise and use different words and maybe an example. Your posts often devolve into florid prose about ... well I am not sure what they are about.

Precisely. A concrete example of political correctness damaging serious intellectual discourse would be incredibly helpful.
   136. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:54 AM (#4399140)
Also, if your primary example is Summers, let me just say that I agree that he wasn't treated fairly. But I've said all along that political correctness can be abused. I just don't think Summers is proof that the entire concept is flawed or that serious discourse in our society has been damaged.
   137. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:01 PM (#4399146)
You're good when it comes for requests, but you haven't caught the knack for reciprocation, have you?

Posts 19, 42, 54, 80, 81. Then come back and read the ones on this page.



   138. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:05 PM (#4399151)
136:

How about James Watson?

How about the proposed (or maybe its been published) edition of Huck Finn without the \"######[s]"?

PC doesn't raise its head always in informal settings, but it also does in formal ones.

Over the past few weeks/months, we've seen a number of topics come up on the OTP thread where the kneejerk response of many is castigation and namecalling because the views expressed, the views themselves, are condemned out of hand as beyond the pale.
   139. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:15 PM (#4399155)
Zero sympathy for Watson. I think he's a d**khead who's mostly just trolling.

I think a sanitized edition of Huck Finn is kind of stupid, but as long as the original version is still being published I don't see it as a big deal.

I don't understand why you care so much about your friend's reaction to Wodehouse.

Again, there are certainly examples of people pushing PC too far (e.g., that guy who was fired for saying "niggardly"), but I don't think there's anything wrong with the concept. As I said earlier, it's mostly a function of having respect and empathy for other peoples' points of view.
   140. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:16 PM (#4399156)
You're good when it comes for requests, but you haven't caught the knack for reciprocation, have you?

This is a good example of political correctness in another form. It's hard to have an intelligent, "serious" conversation with you when you keep throwing out gratuitous insults. I would prefer it if you kept those thoughts to yourself.
   141. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:17 PM (#4399157)
the views themselves, are condemned out of hand as beyond the pale.


Tell me about it. How many societal ills could be cured if we only allowed adults to sell their children and organs on a free and open market, yet I'm treated like a pariah for pointing out the obvious.
   142. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:24 PM (#4399158)
You don't understand the power that gives people--if they can censor expressions.

As my post made quite clear, it's more than just one friend. Moreover, it's indicative, and people like you whitewash it--yes, whitewash it.

It's what it tells you about the human mind. It isn't just about the use of \"######\"--that's a much too narrow view. It pervades all discussions--you keep ignoring that point--and it should be stomped on whenever it flares up every time when there is a pretense of an intellectual discussion. Go back and re-read where those discussion start on the topics I referred to in OTP. Every damn time there is conflagration set by those who don't think it should be discussed at all, shouldn't be discussed except in a certain way, followed by insults and caterwauling about creeps and perverts, and how they'll not sully themselves by remaining in the neighborhood. Do you deny that? That's is not incidental. That is a force to reckon with.
   143. Lassus Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:25 PM (#4399159)
#141 - Nice use of "cured" in that context. Well done.
   144. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:26 PM (#4399160)
This is a good example of political correctness in another form. It's hard to have an intelligent, "serious" conversation with you when you keep throwing out gratuitous insults. I would prefer it if you kept those thoughts to yourself.


Q.E.D.

What's insulting about this? What's untrue about it?
   145. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:27 PM (#4399161)
And let's be honest, sometimes a chick's asking for it, and sometimes a guy's just gotta rape.
   146. Bitter Mouse Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:29 PM (#4399163)
Tell me about it. How many societal ills could be cured if we only allowed adults to sell their children and organs on a free and open market, yet I'm treated like a pariah for pointing out the obvious.


Nice callback. Lends structure to the thread.

You don't understand the power that gives people--if they can censor expressions.


Sure, but no one here is censoring anything. Heck I think all the lefties here are totally against censoring (and I bet most everyone else is also). it might be one of the few things we can all get behind.

My giving you grief about your use (a while back) over a certain slur (related to female anaatomy) is not censorship in any way shape or form (for example).
   147. Lassus Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:29 PM (#4399164)
Every damn time there is conflagration set by those who don't think it should be discussed at all, shouldn't be discussed except in a certain way, followed by insults and caterwauling about creeps and perverts, and how they'll not sully themselves by remaining in the neighborhood. Do you deny that?

- raises hand -

Asked and answered over and over. And over. Disagreement is not censorship. A minority of conversation deserters does not halt conversation. None of it means people aren't discussing the issue with you at length. You cannot manage that there are those who disagree, so you focus on those who can't bother to wade through your turgid prose.
   148. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:34 PM (#4399168)
Zero sympathy for Watson. I think he's a d**khead who's mostly just trolling.


It always comes down to it being about dicks saying dickish things, doesn't it? What's got to do with what he said and the kneejerk reaction of the multitudes (including the press and certain classes)?
   149. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:36 PM (#4399169)
Where do you draw the line? Would it be unfair of me to tell a holocaust denier that he's a moron and a bigot?

Is the issue that you don't like it when people disagree with you?
   150. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:44 PM (#4399171)
What difference does it make? I'm on record as not suppressing discourse in any way? What about you?

We're where we are, and not still in some dank cave eating raw meat, because some people have had the nerve to think and talk about that which many many think is unthinkable and shouldn't be uttered. Galileo or the Pope? Which side are you on? Think of the children as a guiding principle for cultural evolution ain't gunna make it. That means, though, you are going to have to be willing to put up with dickheads and people who are wrong--terribly, awfully wrong. Is there a way out of this irresolvable and unsatisfactory conundrum? No.
   151. PerroX Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:50 PM (#4399174)
Forget about discourse on some obscure part of the web. People get fired, their words ripped out of context so a whole crowd of people can grin and smile as the guy dangles.

That's the obscenity.
   152. PerroX Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:53 PM (#4399176)
Morty Causa was bad
He was the brother that you never had
   153. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 29, 2013 at 12:54 PM (#4399177)
Actually, here's a good example of political correctness damaging serious discourse: The Iraq war. No one said that Bush and Cheney were lying through their teeth because that would have been bad form and people in DC just don't do that. But some of that talk could have made a big difference.

Likewise, no one is going to say that Scalia has turned into a crazy old bigot.

But those examples just show that political correctness is not a new phenomenon. Nor is it limited to the left or racial issues. It's just part of our society, and while it's mostly a good thing, it sometimes can be bad.
   154. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 29, 2013 at 01:23 PM (#4399189)
You're good when it comes for requests, but you haven't caught the knack for reciprocation, have you?

Posts 19, 42, 54, 80, 81. Then come back and read the ones on this page.


#19: I don't care if someone wants to publish a sanitized version of Huckleberry Finn, just so long as they don't try to force it upon school systems. Just as I don't care if someone wants to published an asterisked baseball record book, just so long as it isn't confused with the official records.

#42 is a non-response to another comment

#54 says that PC "doesn't have a place in discourse", but doesn't elaborate on that to say who's objecting to that thought

#80 makes a fairly unobjectionable point about Stephen Pinker, but it's kind of a non sequitur, since in the case of the n-word it's only found objectionable by (nearly) everyone when its use is accompanied by the malignant sentiment. Stripped of that context, the objections to it seem far less widespread.

And I'll just quote #81, since I have no idea what it's supposed to mean. It was directed at robinred, and was nonresponsive to his point.

There are no meritorious differences as to debate and serious discourse--it's not a respectable position to hold in debate. And the reason you pull this out of your, er, sleeve is that you don't want to discuss anything except within your parameters, which is because you have nothing else. Which means you have nothing. #### that.


If you or anyone can translate that into English, please do so, and preferably without 20 page academic footnotes.

136:

How about James Watson?


He's got a right to think and say whatever he pleases. He doesn't have the right to a permanent job, though he has the perfect right to holler "PC" if his rantings cause him to lose it. His ramblings about genetics and public policy are about on the level of Frances Cress Welsing's thoughts on white people's lack of melanin.

So, now: When do you think that the n-word should be used, and when shouldn't it be? Your anti-PC sentiments would be a lot easier to understand if you'd give more specific examples of when and where you would draw the line between "discourse" (which includes works of imagination) and gratuitous insult.
   155. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 29, 2013 at 01:28 PM (#4399191)
Forget about discourse on some obscure part of the web. People get fired, their words ripped out of context so a whole crowd of people can grin and smile as the guy dangles.

That's the obscenity.


There have sure been plenty of cases where that's been true**, and if Morty would concentrate on those he'd have more of a point to make.

**Such as the case of Shirley Sherrod, where the right wing attack gang twisted her words 180 degrees and whipped up a media frenzy so powerful that her superiors immediately caved and fired her. Of course it was nice to see that God subsequently dealt with Andrew Breitbart in His own inimitable way.
   156. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 29, 2013 at 01:33 PM (#4399194)
That means, though, you are going to have to be willing to put up with dickheads and people who are wrong--terribly, awfully wrong.

No one is advocating throwing you in jail or taking away your computer. Same with Watson. Same with Summers. I am perfectly willing to put up with all of you. But you have to put up with other people saying that you're wrong or that they don't like what you have to say. I just don't see a cultural crisis.

   157. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 29, 2013 at 01:43 PM (#4399200)
No one is advocating throwing you in jail or taking away your computer. Same with Watson. Same with Summers. I am perfectly willing to put up with all of you. But you have to put up with other people saying that you're wrong or that they don't like what you have to say. I just don't see a cultural crisis.

The irony is that the person here who's done the most complaining about overly tender sensibilities seems to be the prime example of the problem he's talking about.
   158. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 04:43 PM (#4399318)
Actually, here's a good example of political correctness damaging serious discourse: The Iraq war. No one said that Bush and Cheney were lying through their teeth because that would have been bad form and people in DC just don't do that. But some of that talk could have made a big difference.


I think it's more than that. I think people, many people, wanted to believe what Bushco was pushing. A terrible thing had happened, and many of us felt that in circumstances like that you should get behind the President. Many got the impression that it was a national emergency--many wanted to believe that it was. That's a pretty natural thing to do. And I think the legislative branch, and the media, went along with that. It was understandable. Supposedly, the executive branch was on top of things. They deferred to a leader in what seemed like a dire circs. What is surprising is how long it took for us to come of it. Of course, then many of us simply lateraled into denial. But, then, it shouldn't be surprising. The mentality expresses itself not just in matters of war and international events. It can be as small as--well, the issues we've been discussing for these pass few weeks.

That should be a lesson not only for
   159. PerroX Posted: March 29, 2013 at 04:56 PM (#4399321)
The thing we most have to fear is fear itself.
   160. greenback calls it soccer Posted: March 29, 2013 at 05:06 PM (#4399325)
that guy who was fired for saying "niggardly"

I've always assumed -- perhaps incorrectly but this isn't a legal verdict -- that that guy was trying to push some buttons.
   161. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 05:22 PM (#4399331)
#19: I don't care if someone wants to publish a sanitized version of Huckleberry Finn, just so long as they don't try to force it upon school systems. Just as I don't care if someone wants to published an asterisked baseball record book, just so long as it isn't confused with the official records.


Aw, how sweet. But they will force it upon school systems. That's like saying I think scientific creationism ought to be taught in schools--as long as it isn't confused with science. Um, hmm.

But, again, you refuse to see the issue. It isn’t about publishing such a work, or having it in school. It’s about the nature of the ####### response—the instinctive, non-thinking reaction that wants it not to be heard.

As for the rest, I don't think you're tracking the argument.
   162. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 05:29 PM (#4399338)
How about James Watson?

He's got a right to think and say whatever he pleases. He doesn't have the right to a permanent job, though he has the perfect right to holler "PC" if his rantings cause him to lose it. His ramblings about genetics and public policy are about on the level of Frances Cress Welsing's thoughts on white people's lack of melanin.

That, again, misses the point. He didn't have the right to say what he said, was what everyone who jumped on him held. (Does James Watson know something about biology or doesn’t he? Why wouldn’t we be interested in what he has to say about the subject of race and intelligence? Are you interested in hearing anything outside your comfort zone on this--or anything, for that matter?)

Indeed, I've brought this up before, and this is the first time you've expressed any free expression largesse at all. But, again, this isn’t about whether Watson is right or wrong. Or whether he's a dick or dickish. It's about the reflex action of many, including those in our institutions, which reflects on how little people think of rights if it may seem like an attack on a sacred cow. It's easy to be for free expression and for encouraging discourse when nothing be said that offends you. That isn't the test, and you should know that. And this response is a reflex action when it comes to certain issues, many having to do with race or sex. You can't go there. Just like you are appalled anyone might want to go to different place than you in cases of rape. You were disgusted. Where was the largesse then? Besides making the person who reacts this way seem like an unconscionable ass, it is a dagger to the heart of the justice system—and to simple fair play.
   163. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 05:34 PM (#4399341)
That means, though, you are going to have to be willing to put up with dickheads and people who are wrong--terribly, awfully wrong.

No one is advocating throwing you in jail or taking away your computer. Same with Watson. Same with Summers. I am perfectly willing to put up with all of you. But you have to put up with other people saying that you're wrong or that they don't like what you have to say. I just don't see a cultural crisis.

Trying to communicate with some of you is like talking to the wind. That is implicit in your position and the way it is expressed. What's the old gag about the German who didn't object to the herding of the Jews because he wasn't a Jew, etc.?

That is all about some not putting up with expression that is instinctually abhorrent to them—views that frighten you. And browbeating discourse into contouring itself along those lines. How many times how many ways must I say it? It isn’t about you not being able to criticize whomever—it’s about those people who just don’t frigging want it said at all from the very outset. They don't want to have to even engage in Orwellian dictate. We should just know better.
   164. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 05:40 PM (#4399343)
The irony is that the person here who's done the most complaining about overly tender sensibilities seems to be the prime example of the problem he's talking about.


Now, that is dumb, and sure seems dishonest, too.

The irony is you've had to be pulled out of that mindset stuck in the '50s and '60s like a Three Stooges short about pulling teeth. I remember, Jolly Old, when long ago I first mentioned the contradiction of believing in equality and tolerating preferential treatment of favored racial classes. You and Matt #### all over yourselves, and you engage in this same sort of rearguard insult and insinuation, culminating in you and he picking up your football and running off. Like now, you hemorrhaged. You’ve come along way since those days. You've lost your cherry. I know how hard having a mental life stuck in 1965 like a defective needle on an old vinyl record must be, but remember what Earl Weaver said: it’s what you learn after you know it all that counts. People are people, whether they are politically equal in your mind or not, whether they are of the sort you deem deserving, and it is only the institutionalization of our better nature that gives society and us a chance to be better. Remember, too, if all people are equal and the same, they will express the same characteristics in some fashion or other. It's a given.
   165. formerly dp Posted: March 29, 2013 at 05:42 PM (#4399345)
Trying to communicate with some of you is like talking to the wind.
Coming from someone who spends so much time doing battle with windmills, I find this amusing.
   166. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 05:44 PM (#4399347)
that guy who was fired for saying "niggardly"

I've always assumed -- perhaps incorrectly but this isn't a legal verdict -- that that guy was trying to push some buttons.


It is not just some vanishing minority. The mindset just does a lateral to something else. It's not the focus of the mindset that is the problem. It's the mindset. But, this particular focus is all over--here, at Amazon, at those who reacted to the media unseemingly sympathizing with those Steubenville boys. It's not an aberration. It's typical--not overwhelmingly prevalent in expression, but a typical view.
   167. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 06:02 PM (#4399351)
165:

You still here?
   168. Lassus Posted: March 29, 2013 at 06:06 PM (#4399352)
But, again, you refuse to see the issue.
That, again, misses the point.
Trying to communicate with some of you is like talking to the wind.

Let me help:
You don't agree with me.
   169. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 06:15 PM (#4399358)
Q.E.D.

   170. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 29, 2013 at 06:28 PM (#4399361)
#19: I don't care if someone wants to publish a sanitized version of Huckleberry Finn, just so long as they don't try to force it upon school systems. Just as I don't care if someone wants to published an asterisked baseball record book, just so long as it isn't confused with the official records.

Aw, how sweet. But they will force it upon school systems. That's like saying I think scientific creationism ought to be taught in schools--as long as it isn't confused with science. Um, hmm.

But, again, you refuse to see the issue. It isn’t about publishing such a work, or having it in school. It’s about the nature of the ####### response—the instinctive, non-thinking reaction that wants it not to be heard.


Hmmmm, I'm against the censorship or altering of the novel. I'd resist any attempt to force any altered version into a school system. And I think that if someone wants to publish an altered version and sell it to private groups or individuals, they should be allowed to.

None of that satisfies you, because what? Because I'd refuse to reflexively condemn the motivations of parents who might not want their children exposed to the n-word in class? Sorry, but with those people I'd approach them with reason and persuasion, not condemnation. If that's not good enough to satisfy your own peculiar version of political correctness, there's not much more to say. For someone who trumpets his openmindedness as if it were a stuffed boar's head in his den, you sure have a funny way of demonstrating it.
   171. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 29, 2013 at 06:38 PM (#4399366)
How about James Watson?

He's got a right to think and say whatever he pleases. He doesn't have the right to a permanent job, though he has the perfect right to holler "PC" if his rantings cause him to lose it. His ramblings about genetics and public policy are about on the level of Frances Cress Welsing's thoughts on white people's lack of melanin.

That, again, misses the point. He didn't have the right to say what he said, was what everyone who jumped on him held. (Does James Watson know something about biology or doesn’t he? Why wouldn’t we be interested in what he has to say about the subject of race and intelligence? Are you interested in hearing anything outside your comfort zone on this--or anything, for that matter?)


Morty, I've been listening to you for the past several years, and I've got nearly half a floor to ceiling bookcase filled with defenses of racial superiority, dating from the ante-bellum period up through the present and all points in between. I don't need any lectures from you about my willingness to read viewpoints out of my comfort zone, and your condescension on this subject is becoming more than a bit tiresome.

And not being familiar with the details of the Watson case, I'm not even sure how I would react, though the little I've read of his racial views doesn't seem particular original to him. What I said was simply that he doesn't have any right to a permanent job.
   172. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 06:50 PM (#4399373)
Lame and pathetic defensiveness is worthy of the meanest condescension, and not much more. A mind like yours could say the same about you wrt to racism. You can't help but engage in racism, for, I guess, you know, Aristotle, it's all subjective.
   173. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 29, 2013 at 06:54 PM (#4399377)
The irony is that the person here who's done the most complaining about overly tender sensibilities seems to be the prime example of the problem he's talking about.

Now, that is dumb, and sure seems dishonest, too.


Gee, should I now pull a Morty and act as if I've been shot?

The irony is you've had to be pulled out of that mindset stuck in the '50s and '60s like a Three Stooges short about pulling teeth. I remember, Jolly Old, when long ago I first mentioned the contradiction of believing in equality and tolerating preferential treatment of favored racial classes. You and Matt #### all over yourselves, and you engage in this same sort of rearguard insult and insinuation, culminating in you and he picking up your football and running off. Like now, you hemorrhaged. You’ve come along way since those days. You've lost your cherry. I know how hard having a mental life stuck in 1965 like a defective needle on an old vinyl record must be, but remember what Earl Weaver said: it’s what you learn after you know it all that counts. People are people, whether they are politically equal in your mind or not, whether they are of the sort you deem deserving, and it is only the institutionalization of our better nature that gives society and us a chance to be better. Remember, too, if all people are equal and the same, they will express the same characteristics in some fashion or other. It's a given.

That's a masterly combination of undefined terms, selective misrepresentation of my point of view (I'll let Matt speak for himself), antiquated insults, and a stream of meaningless homilies that could have come straight out of a bad Frank Capra movie. I take it this is one of those moments where you're just itching to equate all firms of affirmative action with some sort of 1984 worldview, and denounce anyone who even peeps a peep of dissent to your simplistic equation.

Of course if you were half as "openminded" as you claim to be, you might want to de-hemorrhage yourself and listen to the reasons that lie behind affirmative action's advocacy, not to mention the differences among the many forms that it's taken over the years. But I'm not holding my breath waiting for anything other than a simplistic equation of my actual views with that of a racist.


   174. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 29, 2013 at 06:59 PM (#4399378)
Lame and pathetic defensiveness is worthy of the meanest condescension, and not much more. A mind like yours could say the same about you wrt to racism. You can't help but engage in racism, for, I guess, you know, Aristotle, it's all subjective.

Morty, here's a simple test to see how truly openminded you really are. You may pass it and you may not, but here it is:

In any number of words you want to use, make as good a case as you can for affirmative action. Pretend you're trying to convince some wavering moderate whose vote will tip the scales, and give it your best shot. A truly openminded opponent of affirmative action could do this in a New York minute. OTOH someone who just likes to parrot anti-affirmative action cliches might find himself grasping for words. Feel free to throw in as many Jimmy Stewart or Three Stooges references as you wish, if you think that will help convince the waverer.

Oh, and if you can ever condescend to engage in this little exercise, I'll be more than happy to reciprocate by taking the other side. Any skilled wordsmith such as yourself should be glad to take up such an easy challenge against someone as incoherent as you think I am.
   175. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: March 29, 2013 at 07:00 PM (#4399379)

Again, there are certainly examples of people pushing PC too far (e.g., that guy who was fired for saying "niggardly"), but I don't think there's anything wrong with the concept. As I said earlier, it's mostly a function of having respect and empathy for other peoples' points of view.

I've always assumed -- perhaps incorrectly but this isn't a legal verdict -- that that guy was trying to push some buttons.

Almost certainly incorrect. If this is one of the examples people are going to use then it's worth getting the facts right. I'm taking this from Wikipedia, but it basically jibes with my memory of the story:

On January 15, 1999, David Howard, a white aide to Anthony A. Williams, the black mayor of Washington, D.C., used "niggardly" in reference to a budget. This apparently upset one of his black colleagues (identified by Howard as Marshall Brown), who interpreted it as a racial slur and lodged a complaint. As a result, on January 25 Howard tendered his resignation, and Williams accepted it. However, after pressure from the gay community (of which Howard was a member) an internal review into the matter was brought about, and the mayor offered Howard the chance to return to his position as Office of the Public Advocate on February 4. Howard refused but accepted another position with the mayor instead, insisting that he did not feel victimized by the incident. On the contrary, Howard felt that he had learned from the situation. "I used to think it would be great if we could all be colorblind. That's naïve, especially for a white person, because a white person can afford to be colorblind. They don't have to think about race every day. An African American does."

   176. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 07:01 PM (#4399381)

173:

"Oh, look at the ducks."

Everything isn't about you and your bete noire (sic). You haven't given a single indication that you have read my posts for content.

Radical Chic could have been about you. You seem to have groomed yourself to be susceptible to mau-mauing.
   177. greenback calls it soccer Posted: March 29, 2013 at 07:14 PM (#4399387)
Almost certainly incorrect.

The excerpt doesn't tell me much, except that the guy realized he said something he shouldn't have. That guy's response makes it pretty clear that his case isn't fodder for another Morty Causa-style crusade. Maybe I should clarify that I'm not putting that guy in the same class as the recent clown who defended slavery at CPAC, but I might put him in a group with Doug Gottlieb.
   178. formerly dp Posted: March 29, 2013 at 07:46 PM (#4399400)
You still here?
Doesn't boring the $hit out of everyone on the site get, well, boring after a while? There's nothing to see here-- no one has argued that the term shouldn't be used in the film, and still, here you are, picking a fight with no one, just so you have an excuse to ramble on incomprehensibly.
   179. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 07:53 PM (#4399406)
175:

What did Marshall Brown say when he was informed of his misapprehension?
   180. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 08:10 PM (#4399420)
178:

Again, you want to close down the conversation. Don't you ever even try to go against your repressive grain?

If people don't want to talk about this, fine. If no one wants to dialogue with me, fine. I hadn't said anything for 24 hours, while the topic changed. Then I was re-engaged.

I think I have something to say, and I think I can say it. But I could be deluding myself. Just ignore me if you think I'm an empty suit. I haven't taken out injunctions on anybody. Yet.
   181. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: March 29, 2013 at 08:22 PM (#4399429)
The best ten minutes you'll ever spend on the meaning of language

Yes, that's great stuff.


I'll go with, it's ten minutes extremely well spent, but the best ten would go towards reading Orwell's essay, "Politics and the English Language".

------

I don't agree with a lot of what Morty writes, but the idea that he isn't more than clear enough to be engaged with is ridiculous. A few of you remind me of 12 year olds trying to win an argument by prattling, "What? I can't hear you? Did someone say something? Is he speaking English??" Grow up.

------

Speaking of disagreeing, re Morty's post 158:

Actually, here's a good example of political correctness damaging serious discourse: The Iraq war. No one said that Bush and Cheney were lying through their teeth because that would have been bad form and people in DC just don't do that. But some of that talk could have made a big difference.

I think it's more than that. I think people, many people, wanted to believe what Bushco was pushing. A terrible thing had happened, and many of us felt that in circumstances like that you should get behind the President. Many got the impression that it was a national emergency--many wanted to believe that it was. That's a pretty natural thing to do. And I think the legislative branch, and the media, went along with that. It was understandable. Supposedly, the executive branch was on top of things. They deferred to a leader in what seemed like a dire circs. What is surprising is how long it took for us to come of it. Of course, then many of us simply lateraled into denial. But, then, it shouldn't be surprising. The mentality expresses itself not just in matters of war and international events. It can be as small as--well, the issues we've been discussing for these pass few weeks.


This is entirely too benign a reading of national ignorance, rage, and cowardice that led to the murder of a hundred thousand people. It was abundantly clear to literally hundreds of millions of us around the world that the Bush administration was forging evidence, lying, and intending to profit from a war of choice. No one who had watched Bush in the months leading up to 9/11 and then to the initial bombing of Baghdad could have any illusions about his competence or intentions.

Returning to Orwell, "Politics and the English Language" thoroughly anticipates how language was used by the Bush administration and its apologists and abettors (which included the public) to make mass murder palatable. I'd suggest to anyone interested that the video linked to in 104 is terrifically on target wrt smaller social settings, while Orwell is particularly good at addressing the broad range of national political discourse.

...get[ting] behind the President


is precisely the kind of language used to sell the invasion, and it's exactly the kind of language we should avoid in aiming to understand the national rampage the United States went on.
   182. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 08:23 PM (#4399431)
Having cleared away that brush:

Morty, here's a simple test to see how truly openminded you really are. You may pass it and you may not, but here it is:

In any number of words you want to use, make as good a case as you can for affirmative action. Pretend you're trying to convince some wavering moderate whose vote will tip the scales, and give it your best shot. A truly openminded opponent of affirmative action could do this in a New York minute. OTOH someone who just likes to parrot anti-affirmative action cliches might find himself grasping for words.


This is truly incredible. You always want the merits to resolve the issue of rights. It’s worse than Alice in the Wonderful: first come to a decision, then we decide who can argue and what can be argued. Is that it? You keep referring to the merits and never want to address the issue as posed to you—does someone have the right to make his case, an unpopular one, or is it okay to simply shout him down? You evade this because in your heart of hearts you don’t want to hear what someone has to say if you will take it as an attack on your core beliefs. That can’t be how it’s done. That’s a non-starter. If it is, then it’s all still a free-for-all and your favored group goes back to having to fight for its freedom.

The question you are too chicken #### to ever answer about Affirmative Action is whether it is racism. And you keep changing the subject, just as you do about the issue of reflexively shouting down dissent. You have this idea, like many, that if racism is good (for you and yours), then somehow, magically, it’s transformed into non-racism. Whether something is good or needed is separate from what it is.

Now, having said that, I could make a case for Affirmative Action. In fact, I have many times. It would be the same case made all the time by divers and sundry. And there’s a lot to be said for it. However, it is still law that is fundamentally discriminatory. That was my point then, and it is the point I would make against it now. Back then, you didn’t want hear it; now you still don’t. You, in fact, want me to make your case.

Well, have you showed your understanding of the opposition by making the case against AA? I’m inclined to say I’ll argue for AA preferences and discriminatory policies if you first argue against them extensively. But the whole thing is silly. You can’t get out of the hog wallow of your ad hominem. You're incapable of empathy with the old racists--you're a new racist.

Finally, though, it doesn’t matter if I’m a racist, just as I bet it doesn't matter if your side acts racist. The arguments for each exist. Deal with it—or be counted as no better than those southern racist you had such fun feeling superior to.

   183. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 29, 2013 at 08:35 PM (#4399442)
This is entirely too benign a reading of national ignorance, rage, and cowardice that led to the murder of a hundred thousand people. It was abundantly clear to literally hundreds of millions of us around the world that the Bush administration was forging evidence, lying, and intending to profit from a war of choice. No one who had watched Bush in the months leading up to 9/11 and then to the initial bombing of Baghdad could have any illusions about his competence or intentions.

Wow, overbid of the year.

Yes, Bush launched a foolish war with no plan how to win it, and used false pretense to justify it. And then, they botched the execution very badly.

However, the U.S. as a sovereign nation had sufficient grounds to declare war on Iraq (or get the Congressional resolutions that pass for DoWs these days). You may not like it, but under international law we can declare was on countries that behave as Sadaam Hussein's Iraq did.

Even if one was to apportion blame the deaths, why don't the insurgents bear responsibility for the vast majority of deaths that happened after the invasion succeeded? When your country loses a war, you're supposed to surrender, and reconstitute a gov't that is acceptable to the victor.



   184. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 08:37 PM (#4399443)
This is entirely too benign a reading of national ignorance, rage, and cowardice that led to the murder of a hundred thousand people. It was abundantly clear to literally hundreds of millions of us around the world that the Bush administration was forging evidence, lying, and intending to profit from a war of choice. No one who had watched Bush in the months leading up to 9/11 and then to the initial bombing of Baghdad could have any illusions about his competence or intentions.


I probably am being too light on him. I loathed him, would not have voted for him in thousand years, and was infuriated by Florida and the Supreme Court debacle. Perhaps I overcompensated for my instinctive revulsion by giving him too much the benefit of the doubt. I wasn't alone. Patriotic fervor, fear of not being seen as patriotic, plus a genuine confusion can lead to unhappy circumstances. Not to excuse myself, but happens often--usually in emotionally charged situations that lead to poorly thought reactions. Brazenness can be very effective. And it takes a while to wake up. Although I never supported Bushco, I have to admit being tacitly submissive. And like some we know who wake up the next morning full of regret, even shame. I feel violated.

Thanks for the words of support in other matters.
   185. Morty Causa Posted: March 29, 2013 at 08:41 PM (#4399446)
And with that, have a good Easter.
   186. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: March 29, 2013 at 09:14 PM (#4399463)
Yes, Bush launched a foolish war with no plan how to win it, and used false pretense to justify it. And then, they botched the execution very badly.


Haw haw, you sound like a Dixie Chick, Or a Frenchman.
   187. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 29, 2013 at 09:15 PM (#4399464)
Now, having said that, I could make a case for Affirmative Action. In fact, I have many times. It would be the same case made all the time by divers and sundry. And there’s a lot to be said for it.

Then just do it. You may be capable of such an intellectual exercise, but it remains to be demonstrated. And don't worry, if and when you do it, I won't back down on my promise of reciprocity.

But go ahead and surprise me. Show us that your understanding encompasses both sides of the affirmative action issue instead of settling for simplistic notions of "racism" as a one-size-fits-all description of it.

Well, have you showed your understanding of the opposition by making the case against AA? I’m inclined to say I’ll argue for AA preferences and discriminatory policies if you first argue against them extensively. But the whole thing is silly. You can’t get out of the hog wallow of your ad hominem. You're incapable of empathy with the old racists--you're a new racist.

That's about on the level of everything else you've said in this thread, and it's not worth responding to.

Finally, though it doesn’t matter if I’m a racist, just as I bet it doesn't matter if your side acts racist. The arguments for each exist. Deal with it—or be counted as no better than those southern racist you had such fun feeling superior to.

I don't think for a second that you're a racist, and I've never made such a stupid accusation, but I do think that your understanding of the role that race has played (and continues to play) in our country's history barely exceeds that of Ray.
   188. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: March 29, 2013 at 11:26 PM (#4399553)
   189. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: March 30, 2013 at 02:13 AM (#4399596)
Tom Tomorrow on lessons learned from Iraq.


What I find so horrifying (no exaggeration) about the best of Tom is how close he gets to what really gets said, while somehow staying just on that side of the line that manages to remind us exactly how insane things are. How deranged is it that three-quarters of Romney's foreign policy gang during the campaign were Bush/Iraq retreads? How extraordinary is it that if a newspaper ran Bush's latest self-portrait of himself in the shower adjacent a photograph of a seven year old child blown to bloody bits in the first bombing of Baghdad in 2003, the outcry would run 50 to 1 towards what poor taste the newspaper was demonstrating by showing a murdered child, rather than the poor taste of the murder itself?

Speaking of language, there just happens to be a film playing on the sundance channel***, where a black man has to push and persuade his white female lover to say, over and over, "nigger, fuck me hard". Interesting to me, the channel places an enormous, bright red rectangle over the sex act, which isn't any more revealing than the nudity just prior to it, but the channel nonetheless decides to allow us to hear "nigger" over and over and over. The logic isn't clear.

The woman then writes about the episode and reads it in front of her creative writing class, mostly white students led by a black professor. She describes to the class the "actual" episode, then gets marvelously pc responses from the white students. Oh, and sitting next to her in class is her boyfriend, a disabled white guy. The movie is called Storytelling. It's engaging, listening to these kids talking about a factual epsiode as though it was fiction. Hard to say what worth the movie has, but it's interesting in light of this thread.


***Why the hell would a channel that promotes film so routinely flog ads on the screen while films are playing? It's a despicable practice.
   190. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: March 30, 2013 at 07:11 AM (#4399613)
Then just do it. You may be capable of such an intellectual exercise, but it remains to be demonstrated. And don't worry, if and when you do it, I won't back down on my promise of reciprocity.

But go ahead and surprise me. Show us that your understanding encompasses both sides of the affirmative action issue instead of settling for simplistic notions of "racism" as a one-size-fits-all description of it.


Yeah, because if there's one triumphant and inescapable characteristic demonstrated by the identity liberals, it's a deep understanding and appreciation of the arguments and perspectives of the classical liberals.

Sure thing, Andy.
   191. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 30, 2013 at 07:16 AM (#4399614)
I don't get the Sundance channel, Jack, but that sounds like quite a movie, or at least the scenes you describe. It sounds like a very good depiction of how the real world of today often comes into conflict with an idealized vision of the world of tomorrow, reinforced by Sundance's censorship in a particularly sublime way.

While it's got little in common with Storytelling, another movie that's got a slant on race that's been too hot for television is Samuel Fuller's White Dog. Combining those two films in back-to-back classes with a teacher who's committed to open engagement might make for a hell of a classroom discussion.

***Why the hell would a channel that promotes film so routinely flog ads on the screen while films are playing? It's a despicable practice.

Hey, why do you think some of us swear by TCM? Not a commercial in a carload from the opening credits to "The End">
   192. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 30, 2013 at 07:28 AM (#4399616)
Then just do it. You may be capable of such an intellectual exercise, but it remains to be demonstrated. And don't worry, if and when you do it, I won't back down on my promise of reciprocity.

But go ahead and surprise me. Show us that your understanding encompasses both sides of the affirmative action issue instead of settling for simplistic notions of "racism" as a one-size-fits-all description of it.


Yeah, because if there's one triumphant and inescapable characteristic demonstrated by the identity liberals, it's a deep understanding and appreciation of the arguments and perspectives of the classical liberals.**

Sure thing, Andy.


Well, I've issued a challenge along with a promise to reciprocate. I would think that you or Morty might jump at the chance to make me show just how incapable I am of expressing your side of of one of your pet issues. But it looks like both of you are content to be stuck in your own little comfort zones.

**Of course another interesting debate would feature the real Adam Smith vs. today's "free market" gurus. Maybe we could get the Fox News Channel to stage that one.
   193. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: March 30, 2013 at 07:46 AM (#4399617)
Brief, sort of baseball interlude: soundtrack for Storytelling is by Belle and Sebastian, a Scottish band whose follow-up was an album containing the song 'Piazza, New York Catcher' (itself the subject of a thread and many references on this site)
There's a story behind that red box as well, fussing between the director and mpaa about the nature of censorship (scene sans box would've pushed the film to nc-17) - the assoc. nixed the word 'censored' from appearing in the box as they don't consider themselves censors.
   194. Morty Causa Posted: March 30, 2013 at 10:23 AM (#4399653)
187, 192:

(Just to see how far you'd go in your journey to nowhere.)

So, it’s all about a sensitivity rehab? Don’t you ever even attempt to get out of your box? Aren't you tired of being a cliche? Do you think anyone here would have his/her eyes opened?

But, nope. You first. I’ve been down this road before. It’s your baby.

You distort comments on issues presented, engage in insult and diatribe, and desperately insist on changing the subject. You still have not shown that you understand the point being made about allowing views that are considered anathema to the PC zeitgeist to be expressed. Do you get that? Do you understand why maybe the first response shouldn’t be to squelch an opinion or view?

As to your silly challenge. It’s dumb and would be just a colossal waste of time. I have nothing to prove to you, and nothing you would accept as proof. Whatever I would say you’d find woefully insufficient—I mean, that’s a given. What’s the point? And you have never shown that you are capable of being sensitive to views counter to yours. As here, you misrepresent them, distort them, and then desperately engaged in ham-handed attempts at changing the subject. Anything to not think about the uncomfortably irreconcilable. It’s both insulting and clumsy argument.

However, you made a proposal, and I made a counterproposal. If you really think a lawyer (or anyone mildly informed) can’t manufacture a case for AA (just go to the ACLU site), then, first, I want to you to put up an argument against it. My response will be along the lines of yours. I’m not doing any more work on this than you do. And I simply don’t trust you. I’m truly sorry our relations here have deteriorated to the extent they have, but there you have it. Take it or leave it. That’s non-negotiable.
   195. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 30, 2013 at 10:39 AM (#4399662)
And with that, have a good Easter.

And a happy Resurrection to you. (smile) I'll let others make up their own minds about who's been playing the artful dodger on this thread, and leave you to wallow in your peculiar form of victimization.
   196. Morty Causa Posted: March 30, 2013 at 10:39 AM (#4399663)
I don't think for a second that you're a racist, and I've never made such a stupid accusation, but I do think that your understanding of the role that race has played (and continues to play) in our country's history barely exceeds that of Ray.


That kind of weaseling has to be admired both for its transparent insincerity and its smart about-face.

EDIT: Don't let those chocolate bunnies get you.
   197. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: March 30, 2013 at 10:45 AM (#4399665)
I don't think for a second that you're a racist, and I've never made such a stupid accusation, but I do think that your understanding of the role that race has played (and continues to play) in our country's history barely exceeds that of Ray.

That kind of weaseling has to be admired both for its transparent insincerity


I'm sorry if you're disappointed that I think of you as more dogmatic and ahistorical than anything like a racist, but I've never seen any evidence of any racial hostility on your part.

and its smart about-face.

On what? When have I ever stated or implied that your views stemmed from racism, rather than from other factors?
   198. formerly dp Posted: March 30, 2013 at 10:58 AM (#4399667)
Again, you want to close down the conversation. Don't you ever even try to go against your repressive grain?
I'm not closing it down, Morty. I'm pointing out the naked fact that your constant claims of victimization and repression bore the $hit out of everyone on the site.
   199. Morty Causa Posted: March 30, 2013 at 11:20 AM (#4399672)
To accomplish your heart's desire, it would have been a whole lot better if you and the others had simply conceded the narrow, irrefutable point we were making, rather than desperately attempting to obfuscate it turning the discussion into a County Fair replete with two-headed calf and bearded lady.
   200. formerly dp Posted: March 30, 2013 at 11:27 AM (#4399674)
To accomplish your heart's desire, it would have been a whole lot better if you and the others had simply conceded the narrow, irrefutable point we were making, rather than desperately attempting to obfuscate it turning the discussion into a County Fair replete with two-headed calf and bearded lady.
Huh? I haven't engaged with you at all on this issue, other than to point out that you're doing the same boring-ass thing you do in every thread-- stake a position, and then cry "help, help I'm being oppressed!" when the people who express a contrary opinion and don't want to spend 500 posts listening to you melodramatically restate your initial premise over and over again.
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