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Cowboys and Indians.....offensive?

(294 Posts)
mrgrouper Wed 06-Jul-16 09:45:51

Yesterday was the teachers strike, so I took my son to Gulliver's World in Warrington. Gulliver's world has hardly been updated since the 1980s, however I like this because it has a retro feel to it and reminds me of when I went there as a child. Most of the signage is from the eighties.
Anyhow there was a couple there who were clearly unimpressed by its dated appearance. We were in the Wild West part of the park and there is a large sign that says Cowboys and Indians. The woman started pointing and said she could not believe in 2016 they would have such a politically incorrect sign.
I was a bit surprised. Is Cowboys and Indians now racist and offensive? It is the first I have heard of this.

weeblueberry Wed 06-Jul-16 09:50:01

Well yes I'm sure to many it is offensive. I can't get worked up about it myself but then might have a different attitude if I were Native American. wink

Cowboys and Indians is more of a phrase isn't it? Like it's the name of a game?

Starspread Wed 06-Jul-16 09:52:17

To be fair to her I'd probably be pretty shocked by that.

OP, if you're wondering what the problem is, would you still refer to Native Americans as Indians? Assuming the answer is no, that's why it's offensive and incredibly outdated.

TheSparrowhawk Wed 06-Jul-16 09:53:40

What if it said 'Pommies and Paddies' - would you find that offensive?

Religieuse Wed 06-Jul-16 09:55:39

Well, no, the sign isn't. But if you're Native American, the fact that your culture (which was suppressed, slaughtered, removed from its lands and subjected to genocide in many cases) was for a long time represented largely in TV/film/popular culture as a bunch of war-whooping, generic bad-guy savages in feather headdresses on piebald horses, slaughtering white women and children before being outmanoeuvred by heroic cowboys, would get more than a bit tiresome.

BertrandRussell Wed 06-Jul-16 09:56:04

"I was a bit surprised. Is Cowboys and Indians now racist and offensive? It is the first I have heard of this."

Really? You can't think of any way this sign might be unacceptable? Not any way at all? hmm

mrgrouper Wed 06-Jul-16 09:57:21

No, I thought it was just the name of a game.

Pootles2010 Wed 06-Jul-16 09:57:22

Yes it is offensive and outdated, but i guess there's less awareness around that here than in the US.

t4gnut Wed 06-Jul-16 09:57:41

Everything is offensive if you try hard enough

LurkingHusband Wed 06-Jul-16 09:58:35

Perhaps read "Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee" and then come back and comment ?

Pootles2010 Wed 06-Jul-16 09:59:34

Yes but you know the back ground to the game - the idea that its cowboys vs native americans? Who aren't from India? I'm sure you can imagine that the portrayal historically might be a bit offensive, particularly as Religeuse says considering the appalling way they were treated?

Brexit Wed 06-Jul-16 09:59:48

I am struggling to imagine the number of Native Americans likely to be visiting Gulliver's World.

Is this why tv never has any good old fashioned westerns on anymore? I used to love a black and white afternoon movie.

Religieuse Wed 06-Jul-16 10:00:14

Everything is offensive if you try hard enough

Or, alternatively put, 'This isn't something I've ever thought about and I can't be bothered, so I'll say it's PC Gorn Mad'?

TheSparrowhawk Wed 06-Jul-16 10:00:33

'Everything is offensive if you try hard enough'

I generally find that it's people who say pointless things like this ^ who are the first to get offended when their pride is at stake.

Brexit Wed 06-Jul-16 10:00:57

And it should be "Injuns" wink

mrgrouper Wed 06-Jul-16 10:01:41

I am not saying it is PC Gorn Mad. I have never made a judgement on it. I am just a bit surprised as I thought it was just a game and did not realise it could offend people.

UmbongoUnchained Wed 06-Jul-16 10:02:19

I didn't know this either!

KoalaDownUnder Wed 06-Jul-16 10:03:24

Exactly, Religieuse.

Yes, it is offensive and no, it's not okay in 2016.

LazyJournalistsQuoteMN Wed 06-Jul-16 10:03:52

I wasn't aware of it's meaning. I thought it was about the wild west movies with John Wayne, when we were growing up. We were usually the Indians and our friends were Cowboys hmmconfused

Woodhill Wed 06-Jul-16 10:04:28

Cowboys sounds a bit odd too considering they were grown men.

Yes the sign is dated.

Iamthegreatest1 Wed 06-Jul-16 10:06:13

OP, seriously you've never heard of native Americans? You've never heard of how white Americans invaded them when they arrive? You've never watched an old movie depicting this? You just thought it was the name of a game shock have you been living under a rock?

TheSparrowhawk Wed 06-Jul-16 10:07:29

How could a grown adult not know the story of how native Americans were known as 'Indians' and decimated by invaders?

Borogoves Wed 06-Jul-16 10:07:57

It's the game that would be offensive rather than the terminology,

BertrandRussell Wed 06-Jul-16 10:08:59

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

UmbongoUnchained Wed 06-Jul-16 10:09:21

Why were they called Indians?

We never learnt any of this at school!

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