(Closed) I hate finding out too late that a word/phrase is actually racist :-(

posted 6 years ago in The Lounge
Post # 3
3830 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

I legit did not know the last one was racist at all.  And i have never thought of coon being offensive either since that is what we call Racoons around here. 

I guess it depends where you live BIG time. 

Post # 4
1068 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 2013

You are letting yourself care about it too much. There is a difference between using a word with hatred in your heart towards a group of people, and innocently trying to order an ice cream cone with sprinkles!

Also: If someone gives you crap about “spades,” just say you’re a Dashell Hammet fan.

Also: Wikipedia says it’s not racist, and I believe them. Because that doesn’t make sense. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/To_call_a_spade_a_spade

Also: You could just watch Grand Torino and just make sure never to repeat anything that Clint Eastwood says in that movie. That should about cover it.

Post # 5
658 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@Tangled:  she had an awful experience in 6th grade it is understandable why she is a little worried about it.

Post # 7
9669 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

@iarebridezilla:  It’s the intention behind the slur that matters.  You’re not considered a racist if you don’t know the meaning of the word or expression.  If you say something by accident or mistake, apologize and move on.  If people choose to get offended by someone who is not a racist, but who made an innocent mistake, they’re wasting a lot of good hate-energy they could direct towards a true racist who deserves it.

Post # 8
5296 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: January 1993

yikes, I use three of those on a regular basis and while I vaguely knew that “coon” had racial implications, my family always used it when referring to racoons growing up. I didn’t know until my late teens that it was supposed to be a slur. 

Now I’m curious what calling “a spade a spade” is supposed to mean?! I also use “gypped”. Undecided

Post # 9
1212 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I just saw that other thread, and I had no idea either :-/

Post # 11
3625 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

I think you are beating yourself up too much. As PP noted, there’s a difference between intentionally using it for hate and doing it out of innocence. Many words in our every day rhetoric apparently comes from a place of hate and racism and I don’t think everyone actually is aware of every single one aside from the obvious “n-word” type things. I had no idea the spade saying was racist nor have I ever used the word “coon” to refer to anything besides raccoons. If you correct yourself or make a mental note once you are made aware, I think it is fine.

Post # 12
3569 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

@Sunfire:  I agree. I did the same thing a little bit ago on a wedding board.. It was an honest mistake and I didn’t know it was considered a racial slur.. you would of thought I killed a puppy the way some people responded. It was an honest mistake.

Post # 13
2009 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

I’m usually on the other side.  

While I am personally almost impossible to offend, I am always offended for others.  So I’m often calling others out on their cavalier attitude of subtle racism, sexism etc.

I go so far with it, that I chewed out a life guard at my pool for yelling across the pool to another lifeguard that the boys on the courts wouldn’t play basketball with them because he was white and they were black.  The pool was full of people from all different backgrounds as well as children.  I find any sort of conversation where race or color is used IN ANY WAY is unacceptable. 

Now that I live in the south, I find myself constantly correcting people.

I don’t know how people DON’T know that these things are rude.

 So your post interesting…

Post # 14
1849 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

OP, I get worried about that too. I moved to the US from Russia when I was 10, and even though it’s been a long time, I still feel like there are things other kids learned that I didn’t. I just try to pay very close attention any time I learn these things and never forget. 

@Tangled:  She cares about not offending others, even if it’s by accident. That’s not a personality flaw and she’s not wrong for it.

The world would be a better place if we all corrected ourselves and learned a lesson when we accidentally offend instead of standing our ground and defending our right to say offensive things. I don’t think people should be guilted for unknowingly using racist terms, but I definitely think they should learn. 

Post # 15
5787 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2011

I always think of JAP as “Jewish American Princess” which is such a long island thing and is just offensive instead of racist.

Whats the spade thing? Off to find this thread…

Post # 16
8738 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2011

@hisgoosiegirl:  Gypped comes from gypsy. Basically it is derogatory because when you way you were gypped it means someone shorted you on something. The implication is that gypsies will short people or “gyp” them out of things. 

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