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To have thought this was racist

(206 Posts)
turnip2012 Sun 18-Nov-12 20:30:45

Ex was dropping off my ds earlier, at which point ex and dp were talking and it became a little heated. Dp kept getting cut off by ex interrupting him, at which point dp said "you're not even listening to me, maybe if you get your bloody afro out your ears you'll hear me better" (ex is part african). Dp is saying he felt ex wasn't listening as was responding with unrelated points. I felt the reference to his afro was racist, AIBU?

LDNmummy Tue 20-Nov-12 23:42:24

I wrote that last comment quite quickly so did not elaborate well what I meant to say. I will come back to explain tomorrow as too tired to do so now.

There was also a lot I left off the end of that comment so I will explain later.

It was a very poorly written post.

I think I am getting too old for all this MN debating, especially on the more emotive topics.

LastMangoInParis Tue 20-Nov-12 22:32:08

If the OP's DP was black, I doubt he would have made that sort of comment

LDN it's actually exactly the sort of thing XP (black) would say.
He may be a bit of a tosser in some ways, but he's not 'self-loathing'.

TBH I'm quite taken aback by your referring to 'the self-loathing type' of black person (that said, though, I can't help drawing inferences about the 'type' of white person who categorises people in this way). See, that comment of yours, to me, looks a tad dubious in terms of ignorance, arrogance and racial stereotyping.

GreatOdinsRaven Tue 20-Nov-12 19:55:55

Well, all I can say is I wouldn't be offended by someone having a jab at my hair in an argument and struggle to find racism in that comment. smile

OP asked for peoples opinions and I gave mine, everyone is entitled to theirs.

AmberLeaf Tue 20-Nov-12 19:27:46

Thank you too Jins smile

Jins Tue 20-Nov-12 18:35:56

Amberleaf posts brilliantly on all these threads. She has more patience than I do. I hide many of them

Vaginald Tue 20-Nov-12 18:05:29

I'm mixed, I find it racist.

AmberLeaf Tue 20-Nov-12 17:50:54

Thank you OurPlanetNeptune

OurPlanetNeptune Tue 20-Nov-12 17:37:33

Amberleaf has posted measured, insightful and intelligent comments. Brilliant. I wish I had her patience and eloquence.

Some posters on this thread have demonstrated a willful ignorance that is really quite profound.

AmberLeaf Tue 20-Nov-12 16:39:14

If a white person said to another "Well if you got your mullet out of your ears you'd hear me better" would that be self loathing?

No, but I think we all know that wouldn't happen.

takataka Tue 20-Nov-12 16:25:18

Of course it matters who said it to who

anklebitersmum Tue 20-Nov-12 16:13:27

smile GreatOdinsRaven "Well said."

GreatOdinsRaven Tue 20-Nov-12 15:54:30

I don't believe that all black people are in the same "community". Sorry but that's bollocks!

If it's racism, which it isnt, then it doesn't matter who said it to whom, it's still racism surely?

Are you saying that for one person to mention antother's style of hair is self loathing?

If a white person said to another "Well if you got your mullet out of your ears you'd hear me better" would that be self loathing?

He wasn't saying the afro was offensive or even putting it down. He was in an argument/ heated debate and used a reference about his hairstyle to have a dig. That is all.

mynewpassion Tue 20-Nov-12 15:40:16

I think ghost is still very naive. Just because her black friends use it within their little group it doesn't necessarily mean that it's okay to use in the wider community.

Give her a break. She's still learning.

The dp and the op said that dp is Caucasian.

LDNmummy Tue 20-Nov-12 13:21:09

If the OP's DP was black, I doubt he would have made that sort of comment.

Especially as a black person who is aware of their own community would be aware that hair is a complex and sensitive issue within African/ Caribbean circles.

There is also the point that a black person who would make that kind of comment is the type who has self loathing tendencies. The type who would think an Afro is ridiculous as it looks scruffy because natural hair should be tamed to fit in with an Eurocentric view of what is considered attractive and smart.

GreatOdinsRaven Tue 20-Nov-12 12:31:05

Well, I do think having an afro is a style choice, because you choose to wear your natural hair in that way, which is fine.

If everyone just wore their hair in it's totally natural state then most people would have dreadlocks down to their ankles.

It's ostentatious in the way that it draws attention- I'm talking the kind of afro that occupies it's own airspace (as mine does). People have asked to touch it, and ask all sorts of questions about it (some frankly ridiculous!)

smile Anklebiter brilliant!

The point is the op's dp was making a comment about a true feature of her ex, being a bit derogatory and choosing an aspect of his appearence to pick on. OK, it's probably a bit of a dig on the 'fro but not racist IMO.

OP would you have posted this if your dp was black? (assuming he's white or not black)

HullyEastergully Tue 20-Nov-12 12:19:11

How about:

Ghostship, you may not be a deliberate and intentional racist, but that term is deemed racist and so if you use it people will call you racist.

imnotmymum Tue 20-Nov-12 12:14:28


imnotmymum Tue 20-Nov-12 12:14:14

Not rascist at all and it is this kind of Oh me we have to think what we say that makes people all edgy and play the rascist card.

takataka Tue 20-Nov-12 12:09:48

oh, grow up anklebiter

anklebitersmum Tue 20-Nov-12 11:44:43

Ghostship What black friends? We all know you're making them up to hide your racist tendencies. There are no black people who use that term anymore.

None. Do you hear me?


Jins Tue 20-Nov-12 11:12:30

21 is well under 50 which is what I said. There is no excuse for someone of your age not knowing that term was offensive. Offensive terminology is discussed in schools quite a bit.

If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck..

GhostShip Tue 20-Nov-12 11:08:40

I'm 21, not over 50 and didn't know it was offensive. Why would I when my black friends used it?

How do you know I wasn't apologising? I stopped doing that as soon as people wouldn't accept that I wasn't a raging racist. Because people like to get their pitchforks out and won't accept that someone genuinely isn't racist.

tjah04 Tue 20-Nov-12 10:41:57

JINS. Without wishing to start a debate I would like to offer an honest response to you.

It is because of the resentment that is caused by trying not to be racist. The best example I can give was my younger brother when repeatedly called "you white people" by a black teacher at school and was told that it was acceptable because it was prejudice and not racist.

Well here lies the problem as it still caused offence to many in the class and who on earth decides whether or not it is acceptable.

For me personally, I have no deference over skin colour. I do however note various differences between cultures and I resent being called racist for that. However, the problem is that many people (mostly uneducated and ignorant) seem to note a cultural difference and resort to racism because of this.

I live in East London and it is very noticable here. Cultural practice for many African people here (I believe) is to link their church with there family church at home. So if a new church opens, many of the congregation will move close by. We have a very large African population here. The cultural differences become more apparant. New shops will open focused on the African market and many caucasians have a problem with this as their local butchers are shutting done and as a result resort to insulting individuals for their colour rather that seeing it for what it is. The general consensus is that white/british are being "pushed out". If people state that are they being racists? To want to move to an area that can provide for their own needs and to resent being pushed out of their own? I am asking rhetorical questions as have no real answers.

For this reason, I do not believe that people do or will in the near future accept or behave in a multicultural society which I find rather upsetting as certainly around here as racial segregation still exists even within the schools despite the government ignoring this fact.

Jins Tue 20-Nov-12 10:15:06

GhostShip, The appropriate response to being called racist for using a seriously outdated term is to apologise profusely and say that you didn't realise you were being offensive surely?

How can anyone under the age of 50 or so NOT know it was an offensive term?

I fail to understand how a bit of hair in front of someone's ear would cause them to struggle to hear. It was just an excuse to take a pop at the ex and using a racial characteristic is a double whammy of offensiveness.

Scanned the thread and it's good to see that the message is still not getting through despite the best efforts of some posters. Seriously, we have a racist type discussion on MN a couple of times a week and it's pretty clear how we should all behave in a multicultural society. Why do some people completely fail to get it? It's been over thirty years since Rock against Racism brought things to the fore. How are people still thinking it's OK to use racial characteristics to insult someone?

Blu Tue 20-Nov-12 10:01:34

It was completely out of order.

What MadeInChinaBaby said. (about the difference between 'open your eyes' and 'open your slany eyes').

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