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How would you feel about someone using the word nigger round your dcs?

(81 Posts)
NameToBeDecided Sun 02-Mar-14 09:06:27

My dn6 says the rhyme eeny meeny miny mo catch a pirate by his toe... but her mum, my sil often replaces the word pirate with nigger and it makes my skin crawl, I've asked her not to and reminded her that it's the children (hers are 4 and 6, my dd is 2) who will get in trouble at school but she just laughs it off and says she can't see what the problem is. In the end we had a row yesterday and I told her to teach hers what she likes but I don't want her to use that word near me or my dd and I've asked dns not to either. I think the problem is dealt with, but am I overreacting? to me that word is on a par with shit and fuck, I would be horrified if I heard my dd use it. I can't stress how much I hate it. How would you feel?

LurkingNineToFive Sun 02-Mar-14 09:07:56

It's worse than cunt. I'd kick off, really really fucking kick off!

ilovepowerhoop Sun 02-Mar-14 09:08:57

no I would not be happy with nigger being used. We say 'baby' or 'tiger' instead.

Sparklingbrook Sun 02-Mar-14 09:10:48

That word should never be used whether in front of children or anywhere else for that matter. You are not overreacting at all.

NameToBeDecided Sun 02-Mar-14 09:12:16

I'm glad it's not just me. She seems to put it level with bum or boob, a bit naughty depending where you are but not to bad. I normally can't stand confrontation so I think that's why she realises I'm serious, I wouldn't normally say anything but I can't stand the idea of my dd repeating that

meditrina Sun 02-Mar-14 09:12:19

Cross and staggered. Are you sure that's what's happening?

That rhyme did have 'n' in it routinely back in the 1960s, so I still "hear" it (IYSWIM) but wouldn't want my DC to. I can rather remember holding my breath when I first heard children chanting it in primary playground, wondering what was coming next - relieved to discover that round here it's universally "tiger" or "tigger"

marmitecat Sun 02-Mar-14 09:13:40

Omg I can't believe you have to ask. If your child repeats it at school it would be recorded as a racist incident and would remain on his record through school and quite rightly too. Disgusting language

thornrose Sun 02-Mar-14 09:15:23

It's seriously offensive!

NameToBeDecided Sun 02-Mar-14 09:15:46

Absolutely sure cos we argued about it, she says that's how the rhyme originally goes, which is true, but times change. Generally it seems to be pirate or tiger here which is fine.

LinghamStyle Sun 02-Mar-14 09:16:23

What Lurking said!

Standing in the supermarket perusing something on the shelves and my DD, then aged 3 was mumbling something to herself. Turned out she was muttering about a girl in a headscarf saying "there's a p***" I was mortified, furious and absolutely gutted sad Later on I found out she had learned it at her childminders! angry

lljkk Sun 02-Mar-14 09:24:06

I was born in '67 and grew up with the tiger version of this rhyme; I've only ever heard that racist version in the UK. Disgusting. angry

It was a classic case of Brits-who-think-they-understand-American-culture-but-don't when I read a movie review where the ( Daily Telegraph ) writer moaned about PC movie makers for not using the racist version (movie set in 1990s Colorado); I had to ask DH what the heck the PC ref had to do with. I was so shock to learn the racist version.

I hate the word out of black people's mouths, too, but since it is culturally acceptable among many black communities, I can't agree about "never" allowing it to be used in front of kids (allowing for British definition of "child" as anyone below the age of 17yrs+365 days); somehow have to socialise kids into knowing there are situations when it's not seen as completely horrible.

NameToBeDecided Sun 02-Mar-14 09:44:19

There are rare occasions when it is acceptable, don't know about the film but the book version of 12 years a slave uses that word no end, but it is ok in that context because it's historically accurate and the book wouldn't be the same without it. But generally it is wrong, and young children don't have the ability to understand when it is appropriate and when not.

for those who were surprised I had to ask, it was just because I was so shocked that she thought it was ok that I wondered what other people thought. As I said I can't stand the word.

Wuxiapian Sun 02-Mar-14 09:47:52

That is not on. In any conceivable way.

Grokette Sun 02-Mar-14 10:00:31

My two year old twins were called "two little n*****" recently by a random man in the shops. I'm white, they are mixed race and I really cannot describe how it felt to hear someone use that term toward my children.

I've always understood on an intellectual level how seriously wrong using that word is, but this is the first time I've 'got' the visceral gut reaction, to some extent at least, that my husband and other members of his family have always attempted to describe.

I know the context the OP is describing is very different, but it is very important to try to impress upon young people and children that that word is unacceptable. You are absolutely in the right, OP.

AntoinetteCosway Sun 02-Mar-14 10:02:45

If the adult in question was using the word to explain to children how it is awful and offensive, then I'd say it's ok. Otherwise, and particularly in the circumstances you describe OP, I'd be absolutely furious.

Only1scoop Sun 02-Mar-14 10:03:32

I'd be angry especially given little ones repeat everything like parrots....

AntoinetteCosway Sun 02-Mar-14 10:04:02

Grokette that is so, unbelievably horrible. Are they old enough to understand? I am so angry on your behalf.

Dinnaeknowshitfromclay Sun 02-Mar-14 10:06:56

It's 'Tiger by the toe' isn't it. It was in 1967 when I was a nipper anyway.
In answer to your original Q. I would go nuts. It is worse than cunt as Lurking said. SIL needs a bite of a reality sarnie and if you are the one to educate the dopey mare so be it!

NameToBeDecided Sun 02-Mar-14 10:07:08

grokette that's awful! I'm sorry you had to experience that.

It's exactly that kind of behaviour I worry about. If a word is used regularly it becomes a normal part of speech and that's unacceptable.

ISeeYouShiverWithAntici Sun 02-Mar-14 10:09:25

I would be furious. My children have dual heritage and I won't stand for that kind of shit. Even if they weren't I wouldn't.

I wouldn't have a racist in my life. Not even a cowardly one who hides behind bleating how it's only a rhyme and it's how it used to be.

There are a lot of things that used to be that we have moved on from.

Your sil is an ignorant, racist fool. Laughing is so dismissive.

grokette, that is shocking. Some people are just vile.

BuzzardBird Sun 02-Mar-14 10:11:17

Grokette that is horrible sad how did you react if you don't mind me asking? (bracing myself for the first time I hear my child racially abused)

MrsDeVere Sun 02-Mar-14 10:12:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Grokette Sun 02-Mar-14 10:13:55

Thank you Antoinette and NameToBeDecided It was so shocking. The girls didn't understand and weren't paying attention, thankfully. I dread the day when they are old enough to understand the concept and the fact that some people think they deserve to be spoken to in such a way purely because of their skin colour.

WeAreSix Sun 02-Mar-14 10:15:54

I wouldn't use it, and would not allow DCs to use it, obviously explaining to them why it is so offensive.

We were taught 'nicker' for the nursery rhyme, I always assumed it meant burglar.

Ilovecake80 Sun 02-Mar-14 10:18:03

Not at all overreacting, it is a racist word and I am shocked that someone would teach this to their children. Your sil sounds like a cowardly racist to me. It is much worse that swear words.

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