Homophobia
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13-10-2010, 09:26 AM
 
RE: Homophobia
(13-10-2010 06:45 AM)BnW Wrote:  
Quote:maybe if we made as much of an effort to ask others to watch their language, as we do trying to figure out if the words themselves are offensive, then we could create a culture that refuses to condone the language instead of trying to change the individuals.

I think this misses the point. The words are never a problem, it's the intent behind them. Words only have power if we give them power but they do represent a state of mind. So, using the dreaded "N" word as an example, black people use it for whatever reason but it's taboo for white people to say it because it almost has to be a pejorative. I suppose white people can use it the same as black people but most people are not going to get into that level of semantics.

At some point, the whole thing really becomes silly. If I call someone "black" and someone else calls that person "African American" (assuming we are in the US), does that make me a racist and the other person accepting? What if the other person is advocating that African Americans are somehow inferior to whites? Then does it matter he or she is using the political correct term?

We've all gotten to caught up on the words themselves without enough thought behind the intentions and meaning of people.

This is precisely the point of view I have been advocating all along. Words can offend people only if the person is willing to be offended. The offensiveness of the words is not an intrinsic property of the words when perceived offense depends on what person utters them. And yes, words have the ability to cause people to take harmful actions, but that's only because of the power granted to those words. Words are just words - nothing more. "Sticks and stones can break my bones, but words will never hurt me!"
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13-10-2010, 09:31 AM
RE: Homophobia
(13-10-2010 09:26 AM)2buckchuck Wrote:  
(13-10-2010 06:45 AM)BnW Wrote:  
Quote:maybe if we made as much of an effort to ask others to watch their language, as we do trying to figure out if the words themselves are offensive, then we could create a culture that refuses to condone the language instead of trying to change the individuals.

I think this misses the point. The words are never a problem, it's the intent behind them. Words only have power if we give them power but they do represent a state of mind. So, using the dreaded "N" word as an example, black people use it for whatever reason but it's taboo for white people to say it because it almost has to be a pejorative. I suppose white people can use it the same as black people but most people are not going to get into that level of semantics.

At some point, the whole thing really becomes silly. If I call someone "black" and someone else calls that person "African American" (assuming we are in the US), does that make me a racist and the other person accepting? What if the other person is advocating that African Americans are somehow inferior to whites? Then does it matter he or she is using the political correct term?

We've all gotten to caught up on the words themselves without enough thought behind the intentions and meaning of people.

This is precisely the point of view I have been advocating all along. Words can offend people only if the person is willing to be offended. The offensiveness of the words is not an intrinsic property of the words when perceived offense depends on what person utters them. And yes, words have the ability to cause people to take harmful actions, but that's only because of the power granted to those words. Words are just words - nothing more. "Sticks and stones can break my bones, but words will never hurt me!"
I agree, but it doesn't make the person saying the word look like any less of a jerk.

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"Remember, Jesus would rather constantly shame gays than let orphans have a family."
-Stephen Colbert
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13-10-2010, 01:47 PM
 
RE: Homophobia
I just said that it wasn't about the words, but the permissibility. If I allow you to use the words fag and bitch in my presence, then I create an air of tolerance regarding those words. THAT was my point. If I refuse to permit them in my presence, and others do too, then maybe you can shame them out of society. Or at least out of public discourse.
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13-10-2010, 02:15 PM
 
RE: Homophobia
But what is the point of that? Why designate a certain emission of noise with the special status of a word and then decide not to use it?

Intellectual discourse is obviously usually free of such speech but other than more formal venues, there is no reason to "shame" them out of society.
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13-10-2010, 03:34 PM
 
RE: Homophobia
Quote:"A stupid man's report of what a clever man says is never accurate because he unconsciously translates what he hears into something he can understand." Bertrand Russell

I would agree on two points, more also but I especially want to focus on but two, that words have power in as much as the listener accords them personal meaningful impact.

The double standard is present, as we've discussed, among different communities in society in as much as people within those societies have elected to augment or re-define what may traditionally have been considered a pejorative or slur, unto a word that they believe empowers them instead.

The "N" word, is such an example. As too is the word fag, among gays who I have heard use that term in and among their own circles as a term of endearment. While a straight person using it is deemed an insult, a slight, a homophobic remark, by those same people in those same circles wherein members of that circle may have just used it in all good humor.
It's a matter of perception, but also that of empowering a word to have merit and weight behind it to affect one's self-conscious awareness.

And also, I think in matters of something like the "N" word, it's a generational sensitivity as well. Both for those who use it as a pejorative and the listeners who would take offense if a white person used the word. And yet, traditionally again blacks can use that word by simply changing the consonant at the end unto a vowel, and have no problem with the word. (Though I have heard the traditional spelling of the word used as a means to verbally insult as well. )

I watched "The View" one day, while surfing the channels and stopped because the women on the panel were having just such a discussion as this. Ms. Goldberg said she and her family and friends throw the N word around at different times and it's no problem. However, she said, if you're a white person she doesn't want to hear that word come out of your mouth.

Perception, sensitivity, allowance, permission. All reminiscent of the level of thick skin someone has, and the level of subjective tolerance afforded for any word in the English language.
If I were gay and called someone a fag, or addressed a gay male friend as, 'girl', I'd be OK, in most gay circles in using that phraseology. However, as a straight woman, if I called a gay man a fag, I'd be denigrated and my words would be inferred as insult, and homophobic.
That being said, if presumed "insults" and "offenses" to the spoken word can be either dismissed or embraced depending upon the profile of the speaker, then it's not really a true phobic or racist issue. But rather an elective sensitivity wrought to effect it's own semblance of intolerance.

As such the words themselves aren't the issue, because as said they're nothing but words and the meaning is subjective, when speaking of inferred or implied insult(s). Rather, it's the level of motive attending the listener, when they are outraged at being called a Nigger, said to be the most offensive word in the English language, by a white person. But are happy and in good spirits when being referred to as a Nigga, by a black friend or family member, thereby dismissing the most highly offensive by the mere edit of a consonant unto a vowel. If only other offenses were so easily quashed, as all that.

It's a level of motive in subjective translation of the word, when a gay man is called a fagot by a dear friend playing around in a bar, and that word is passed off in good spirits. But is an outrage, an insult, homophobic and wholly intolerable, when uttered by a straight woman toward a overtly effeminate male co-worker, in a zero-tolerance policy work environment.

And to the second point. It is simply another method, another vehicle of offense to think shaming people into applying self-restraint in saying certain words, that are subjectively offensive within all of and yet select circles of society.
It's not completely true that certain words are always bad to hear and unacceptable to say. And that being the case, I think if we can but exercise self discipline over our own selves, in releasing our need to command all others outside ourselves from speaking in a way that we choose to find offensive, we'll listen more rather than hear what makes us feel less than, by our own permission.
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22-10-2010, 10:07 AM
 
RE: Homophobia
WATCH THIS

It was a banned advert for an insurance company that was hillarious! If you read some of the debates in the comments, it's quite hallirous the lack of sence of humour some people have abouts gays and religion!
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22-10-2010, 11:05 AM
 
RE: Homophobia
(22-10-2010 10:07 AM)violentpixi Wrote:  WATCH THIS

It was a banned advert for an insurance company that was hillarious! If you read some of the debates in the comments, it's quite hallirous the lack of sence of humour some people have abouts gays and religion!
[Image: 20.gif] I'd buy that insurance. It should never be banned. That's a riot.
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22-10-2010, 03:28 PM
RE: Homophobia
I can't see why it is banned. I also can't see why it would work as a commercial to increase business. It seems more like a pro-gay ad to me.
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