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you don't say "there's too many Indians around here..." to someone that just employed two on her team

(90 Posts)
twoopsie Mon 22-Dec-14 08:14:40

OK I think I may have overreacted, but in my early morning meeting my manger started saying "there are too many Indians around here.."

I've recently employed two for my team, so I butted in with a long rant including the British empire, the equality act and so on while raising my voice.

He actually was saying "there are too many Indians and not enough chiefs" as a general statement for our department.

Was IBU to but in? I think I've made a tit of myself

FreeSpirit89 Mon 22-Dec-14 08:16:36

I think it's a lesson in not every statement needs to be cried racism at. The PC police need to give it a rest, it's getting a little tedious now.

And yes you did make a tit outta yourself

CookieLady Mon 22-Dec-14 08:16:38

Don't worry about it.

Jinglebells99 Mon 22-Dec-14 08:16:48

Lol that is actually quite funny. grin

Hassled Mon 22-Dec-14 08:17:31


When I saw the thread title I did assume the Dean Martin song (which is actually "there's too many Chiefs and not enough Indians"). But at least now your manager knows that you're fully aware of Equal Ops, which has to be a good thing.

StackladysMorphicResonator Mon 22-Dec-14 08:18:25

grin grin arf! That's hilarious!

RafaIsTheKingOfClay Mon 22-Dec-14 08:19:16

I would have assumed he meant not enough chiefs but he really ought to have made himself clearer. Don't think it was unreasonable to butt in, he might be more careful next time.

bigjimsdiamondmine Mon 22-Dec-14 08:19:54

yeah well it's one of those stupid office jargon type phrases anyway, he should speak more clearly. You will probably eventually look back and laugh, eventually blush grin Its embarrassing, but your heart was in the right place wine

Mulderandskully Mon 22-Dec-14 08:25:31

The too many Indians phrase is inappropriate IMO. It's outdated and not PC

PhaedraIsMyName Mon 22-Dec-14 08:47:58

Do you mean "Native American"is the correct term? There's by not consensus on that amongst the people concerned.

royaldavescity Mon 22-Dec-14 08:49:11

Oh dear. Yes you did make a bit of a tit out of yourself

MrsLindor Mon 22-Dec-14 08:52:11

A new office legend is born smile

We'd be chuckling about that for years.

waithorse Mon 22-Dec-14 08:54:10

That is funny. grin

Mulderandskully Mon 22-Dec-14 08:55:21

No I mean the whole phrase is inappropriate in the workplace

tobysmum77 Mon 22-Dec-14 09:08:38

He's probably petrified he's going to end up getting sacked for racism. tbh I wouldn't actually use that phrase myself for the exact reason that someone may misunderstand/ take offence.

peacefuleasyfeeling Mon 22-Dec-14 09:11:14

Oh, I was looking forward to a grammar pedantry show down... blush

Stealthpolarbear Mon 22-Dec-14 09:13:56

There is another thread where "doing a foreigner" is widely accepted. Though I suppose maybe it's generic,were all foreigners.

Hatespiders Mon 22-Dec-14 09:24:15

Just don't remark that someone is the n*** in the woodpile...

There are lots of old sayings which are unacceptable now. I actually think 'too many chiefs not enough Indians' is a bit non-PC nowadays. We call them Native Americans. He ought to be a bit careful in today's multicultural society; it's so easy to offend somebody. YANBU in my view.

MehsMum Mon 22-Dec-14 09:29:38

We call them Native Americans
But isn't it up to THEM what they are called? As Phaedra says, there is disagreement as to whether they want to call themselves 'Indians' or 'Native Americans', and I have heard both terms used by those to whom they apply. So it seems a bit unjustified to declare 'too many Indians' non-PC. (Normally, I thought, the phrase is 'too many chiefs and not enough Indians' for top-heavy management).

OP, you gave me a laugh... Your post was not what I had expected!

Tobyjugg Mon 22-Dec-14 09:44:10

We call them Native Americans
FWIW it's more complicated than that. In Canada the preferred term is "First Nations".

PhaedraIsMyName Mon 22-Dec-14 09:50:28

Maybe we should ask someone like the writer of this blog.

HoHonutty Mon 22-Dec-14 09:51:14

twoopsie Tue 23-Dec-14 13:54:41

ERM the PC term for them is not important, but this phrase should be banished. I'm still a bit embarrassed today

MomOfTwoGirls2 Tue 23-Dec-14 15:00:18

ha ha, an old boss of mine did something similar.

'Trouble with this project is that its all fucking Indians'. (He didn't add 'and no fucking chief' but that is what he meant)..

Almost all the many consultants on the project were Indian.

I didn't know the expression, I don't think the non American's on the team did either. My jaw dropped and hit the floor. I was mortified for the team.

My husband filled me in on the saying when I told him in horror when I got home.

Nomama Tue 23-Dec-14 15:07:33

I look forward to a really long life. Then I can haunt such forums and piss myself laughing when today's sayings are ripped to shreds in a similar manner.

The young have absolutely no patience with anything old, twas ever thus smile

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