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it's just a description that fits the reality.

Exactly!

Race is a descriptor. There's no way to get around it and I personally think that if we all start being afraid to use it that way, we're doing more harm than good. And I felt that in the poster's case here, hispanic was simply a description that fit the reality.

 

I had a black friend once ask me if I had ever really noticed her skin color. I told her it was kind of hard to miss. If I were to try and describe what she looks like, but weren't allowed to mention the fact that she is a black person, it would be ridiculous.

 

 

So my question is this?

Mine is: what the hell is cheese heroin?

(Sorry Julie, not trying to make light of your post, because it's a good point. But what the hell is cheese heroin?)

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:D:D:rolleyes:

 

 

 

Why does every one hate Ontarians? What have we done?

 

Sara

 

We don't hate Ontarians! Oh, maybe we like to make jokes about Canadians once in a while but I can honestly say I've never heard the fabled "eh?" myself. We used to get our revenge by seeing how cleverly we could pass off the Canadians coins we'd get in change (but recently that pleasure hasn't been as much fun since the devaluation of the dollar). :D

 

"cheese heroin" just reminds me of "toe cheese" and sounds disgusting but I think it's called that because it looks like grated Parmesan cheese (I don't know for sure since I'm more familiar with dog poo than heroin in any form)

 

Suzanne

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Mine is: what the hell is cheese heroin?

(Sorry Julie, not trying to make light of your post, because it's a good point. But what the hell is cheese heroin?)

Good question, and when I heard it this morning I had no clue either. Apparently it's heroin that is mixed with something like OTC cold medicine and then snorted. Very low potency (wears off quickly) but still very addictive. Apparently kids as young as 9 are entering treatment for addiction.

 

J.

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Right on the money... and it is a problem in the schools in this part of the country.

 

Tara

That danged narc k9 officer...again! :rolleyes:

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I heard a "teaser" on NPR for an upcoming story. The teaser went something like this: "Cheese heroin is a big problem among young hispanics in south Texas." It occurred to me that this statement is somewhat similar to Foxglove's statment at least as it was taken by many people here (in a nutshell, hispanics in her area use pitbulls to make themselves more intimidating or macho). So my question is this? Do you see NPR's teaser statement as having racist overtones?

 

It wouldn't bother me at all, because I would assume that it's being said about a news story dealing with cheese heroin use among young Hispanics in south Texas. That is the subject of the news story. I guess there's no use repeating once again that this thread had nothing to do with race or nationality. It was about an unpleasant incident where a pit bull -- owned apparently by a Caucasian female in Massachusetts -- attacked the OP's dog.

 

Race is a descriptor. There's no way to get around it and I personally think that if we all start being afraid to use it that way, we're doing more harm than good.

 

There's no way to get around it WHEN IT IS RELEVANT. There is no reason to get around it when it is relevant. There is no problem in using it where it is relevant. If a young Hispanic male vandalizes my mailbox, of course I am going to report that it was a young Hispanic male. If I were describing a Hispanic friend, of course I would say she was Hispanic. If I were relating a humorous anecdote about a miscommunication arising from language differences, of course I would mention that the other person was Hispanic. If I were giving a report on problems faced by the public schools in a county with a high number of non-English speakers, of course I would give a statistical breakdown on the student population, identifying the Hispanics as Hispanics. If I were giving a report on the racial/ethnic composition of the state's prisons, ditto. That is totally different from injecting national origin into a discussion about a pit bull attack -- "I live in an area that has a huge hispanic population.. that thinks that they are the most "bad ass" if they have the largest pit bull on a huge chain and a collar with the largest spikes......"

 

Suppose somebody started a thread about people not pooperscooping, and I posted, "Yeah, that's a big problem where I live. We have a huge black population and they are too lazy to clean up after their dogs." Would your reaction really be, "Oh, good for Eileen! She's not afraid to use race as a descriptor"?

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Would your reaction really be, "Oh, good for Eileen! She's not afraid to use race as a descriptor"?

You really want me to answer that, or do you want me to go back to talking about the original subject of this thread, as per your reminder? :rolleyes:

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Whatever you prefer. But if you thought I was trying to get you to go back to talking about the original subject of this thread, you misinterpreted my post.

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It wouldn't bother me at all, because I would assume that it's being said about a news story dealing with cheese heroin use among young Hispanics in south Texas. That is the subject of the news story. I guess there's no use repeating once again that this thread had nothing to do with race or nationality. It was about an unpleasant incident where a pit bull -- owned apparently by a Caucasian female in Massachusetts -- attacked the OP's dog.

Okay, so I'm a bit confused here. I thought I was adding to the discussion about perceived racist speech, which is what this thread has been about for some pages now. You seem to be suggesting that my post is inappropriate because it doesn't address the original post? I'm not so obtuse as to not recognize that the original post was about a white woman's pitbull attacking Liz P's dog, but the thread has since strayed far from that subject. So I fail to see why you are apparently taking me to task for *continuing* the discussion on racist speech.

 

Especially given that when someone else asks

or do you want me to go back to talking about the original subject of this thread, as per your reminder?

 

To which you replied

But if you thought I was trying to get you to go back to talking about the original subject of this thread, you misinterpreted my post.

 

Apparently I misinterpreted your post as well, because it sure sounded to me like a bit of exasperation on your part that "this thread has nothing to do with race or nationality" when it seems to me that is exactly what the discussion has become (well, actually perceived racist speech, which is what I thought I was trying to address, but which also has nothing to do with the original post).

 

Never mind. I just won't bother posting to this thread again. I should have followed my instincts and stayed completely away.

 

J.

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But if you thought I was trying to get you to go back to talking about the original subject of this thread, you misinterpreted my post.

Ok, my bad. You just sounded kind of moddish there with the "no use repeating" and your being the mod, and all. :rolleyes:

I didn't want to continue if you were nudging us back to Liz and poor Sage (who I hope is doing well, or as well as can be expected). Despite the handle I picked, I do follow board rules and mod decisions.

 

I should also add that I am enjoying this discussion, partially because I find the subject of race and race perceptions facinating and partially because it's nice to discuss something this volitile with reasonable people. Even if I don't agree with everything that's been said, it's apparent that most people have given this a lot of thought.

 

That is totally different from injecting national origin into a discussion about a pit bull attack -- "I live in an area that has a huge hispanic population.. that thinks that they are the most "bad ass" if they have the largest pit bull on a huge chain and a collar with the largest spikes......"

 

Suppose somebody started a thread about people not pooperscooping, and I posted, "Yeah, that's a big problem where I live. We have a huge black population and they are too lazy to clean up after their dogs." Would your reaction really be, "Oh, good for Eileen! She's not afraid to use race as a descriptor"?

If the truth is that the group of black people where you live ARE in fact too lazy to clean up after their dogs and especially if it's a widely known problem (such as drug problems among Hispanic teens in south Texas), then I don't see it as racist. You would only be stating the reality of the situation.

If you had said "Yeah, that's a big problem where I live. We have a huge black population and you know how blacks are too lazy to clean up after their dogs.", then I would have been one of the first to cry racism.

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"But she is a typical white person, who, if she sees somebody on the street that she doesn't know, you know, there's a reaction that's been bred in our experiences that don't go away and that sometimes come out in the wrong way, and that's just the nature of race in our society."

 

(Emphasis added.)

 

So when a Presidential primary candidate makes a statement like this, is it racist?

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I had a black friend once ask me if I had ever really noticed her skin color. I told her it was kind of hard to miss.

 

I had an interesting dual experience:

 

When I first went to Alaska and met my students, one of my initial thoughts was, "Oh, they all look so much alike!" Jet-black hair, very dark eyes, Asian features tending toward chubby cheeks, dark skin.

 

When I came back to teach in the area where I grew up, I had exactly the SAME experience on the fisrt day of school: all the girls looked indistinguishable to me, with their shades-of-brown hair, pale skin, white features tending away from chubby cheeks, and pale eyes.

 

I stopped "seeing color" among my students in Alaska. I was in the minority and everyone around me looked similarly Eskimo. The default appearance was "Asian features tending toward chubby cheeks," etc., so that wasn't a useful tool for distinguishing among people. I think my brain rewired itself and made new rules for recognizing people - and then had to rewire itself again when I came home and couldn't use the Alaska rules anymore.

 

Mary

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All I can say is, "Eh?" :rolleyes:

 

I agree. This is a very volatile subject, esp for Americans with such an multicultural mosaic that also translates into a classist/socio-economic mosaic. We up north have a much more recent history with multiculturalism. When I was going to school there was only one black girl in the whole school and she was such a novelty. I had never seen a black person before. I could probably count the number of non-whites on one hand that were part of my world.

I remember when I began at university my best friend and I (she a first generation Indian Canadian) were going to rent from a lady while she went on an extended world-tour. My father and I met with her to finalize the deal and my father suggested that we tell her my friend's ethnicity. I was aghast at this and said that we certainly shouldn't because it didn't have anything to do with whether she should rent to us or not. I think in my father's mind, ethnic differences were more important than ethnic similarities and he didn't want to leave out some "information" that might be relevant. It is sometimes difficult to discern where the information stops and the bigotry begins.

I did get a taste of this when I was married to a Guyanese man (part East Indian, Amer-Indian, European & Chinese) and we were always stopped at the border. Even my mother didn't want to tell my grandmother "what" he was: she was in a chronic care rest home and never met him.

Ailsa

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Okay, so I'm a bit confused here. I thought I was adding to the discussion about perceived racist speech, which is what this thread has been about for some pages now. You seem to be suggesting that my post is inappropriate because it doesn't address the original post? I'm not so obtuse as to not recognize that the original post was about a white woman's pitbull attacking Liz P's dog, but the thread has since strayed far from that subject. So I fail to see why you are apparently taking me to task for *continuing* the discussion on racist speech.

 

I'm sorry you felt I was taking you to task. I was not. The thread has indeed strayed far from the initial subject, as threads often do. As you may have noticed, in general I don't try very hard (if at all!) to keep threads on topic. There are many, many turns a thread may take which will not and should not evoke criticism. The injection of a racial or ethnic slur is one of the rare exceptions. However, I have no problem with the ensuing discussion about perceived racial speech, nor with your post. In my reply, I was just repeating (futilely, as I now recognize) my view that CONTEXT makes a difference as to whether a racial or ethnic comment is offensive (or will be perceived as offensive, if you prefer), and that gratuitously interjecting racial/ethnic disparagement where it has no legitimate relevance to the topic under discussion is very different from reporting a news story on the topic of a racial or ethnic problem. I hoped that my example would make my point clear, but obviously it didn't. I should recognize that (as with dog training) if one hasn't made oneself understood after two or three repetitions, saying the same thing yet again but more impatiently is unlikely to be productive either.

 

If the truth is that the group of black people where you live ARE in fact too lazy to clean up after their dogs and especially if it's a widely known problem (such as drug problems among Hispanic teens in south Texas), then I don't see it as racist. You would only be stating the reality of the situation.

If you had said "Yeah, that's a big problem where I live. We have a huge black population and you know how blacks are too lazy to clean up after their dogs.", then I would have been one of the first to cry racism.

 

The drug problem example is really not at issue here, since no one has said that the drug headline was racist. So let's stick to the hispanics as pit-bull-wielding thugs and the lazy blacks examples. If I understand you correctly, you think that "We have a huge black population and they are too lazy to clean up after their dogs" is (or could be) a legitimate comment in this context, whereas "We have a huge black population and you know how blacks are too lazy to clean up after their dogs" is racist. So if I say you already know this "fact" I'm stating about blacks, it's racist, but if I assume I'm informing you about a "fact" you don't already know, it's okay? And what kind of evidence do you think I would have, or need to have, to establish that the huge population of black people where I live are too lazy to clean up after their dogs? Would generalizing from the handful of black people whose dogwalking habits I would be likely to have observed be okay? Would it matter that we all have experience with white people not cleaning up after their dogs and yet I'm singling out blacks? Or is that okay too?

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So if I say you already know this "fact" I'm stating about blacks, it's racist, but if I assume I'm informing you about a "fact" you don't already know, it's okay?

I gotta be honest, I don't understand what you're asking me here.

Were you reading my "and you know how blacks are" to mean that I'm saying "you know" as in "you know an actual fact"?

"You know how [race] are" is a phrase one hears all the time (at least I hear it here in the south) when someone assumes that because you're white, you'll agree with their upcoming racist remark....ie: you know how they are (because you're white). Facts have nothing to do with it in that usage. Sorry, I guess I thought that was universal racist white person "code" that every white person has heard at one time or another.

 

Would it matter that we all have experience with white people not cleaning up after their dogs and yet I'm singling out blacks?

Your example was that in your specific area, blacks in that specific area didn't clean up after their dogs. My response was that if this is true, then it's not a racist statement. Can it possibly be true? I don't know. I don't live in your area.

If, in fact, it is not true and I know it's not true because I live in your area and I see white people do this all the time....then I would absolutely consider it racist.

 

As far as requiring evidence? What the hell? It's a message board about dogs. Unless I have seen a history of really horrific racist remarks from that poster, I'm going to either give the benefit of the doubt or ask the poster as nicely as possible to clarify what they meant. I consider that to be common courtesy.

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As far as requiring evidence? What the hell? It's a message board about dogs. Unless I have seen a history of really horrific racist remarks from that poster, I'm going to either give the benefit of the doubt or ask the poster as nicely as possible to clarify what they meant. I consider that to be common courtesy.

[/qhuote]

 

THANK YOU!

 

I am glad you posted that. :rolleyes:

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You said that IF it's true that the black people where I live ARE in fact too lazy to clean up after their dogs, then it's okay to say so. I'm asking you what evidence would be sufficient to establish that such an invidious generalization is true. If you don't really care what evidence I have that it's true, I guess you don't really care whether it's true or not. You'll just assume that I'm right in what I say, since that's only common courtesy. Naturally, then, you won't see anything wrong in my statement, or in the statement that started all this, since you courteously assume they are true. I think that's too bad, but I get it, so I guess we can put this to rest.

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DID ANYONE READMY POST? OR AM I NON-AGISANT?

 

 

I can understand your feelings foxglove, having grown up in a difficult part of Los Angels. It IS typical for certain racial people (not mentioning what race) to tend to have bully breeds. That is NOT the case on these caring boards. You would probably have to go to craigslist to find destructive dogs for sale. I'm sorry.

 

I, myself am mostly polish- hey- live with those jokes. LOL.

 

I feel a pit deserves a good breeding, a good owner, and a great responsibility. They were once bred for fighting. Many people that were NOT aware have taken this breed to the fullest- just watch animal planet. Check craigslist. There are so many up for adoption. I have seen so many pits raised and trained by responsible owners. They are wonderful dogs

 

Once rotties were considered dangerous. Now they are a great breed, due to responsible breeders and owners.

It IS the owner and the breeder that makes the breed the best they can be. Just like the border collie. We all spay and neuter our non-working dogs. We try and do what's right by our breed. That doesn't mean "Joe Blow" next door thinks his great attack dog would be great attacking another dog and would breed to that dog. Unfortunately, this happens. With every breed. I think the point to this thread is to educate people, no mind the color of the person, the religion, any other factors, that breeding should be left up to the "few" responsible owners- rather they own the Dam OR the sire. Both are responsible for the litter.

 

Unfortunately for Liz, her dog was attacked for no reason. Her dog was on lead, the other dog was not. It's purely a simple win/win situation IF she can now find the owner. That's the problem. Leash law. When I take mine to the park 2 doors down, they are always on leash- I don't hang onto them. How can you play with a 6 foot leash? But the leash remains and the have an excellent "lie down" we practice every day. ALL the time. Part of the game. Not many owners do that. US here on the board are exceptional owners. I have to say or we would be drinking a beer watching tv instead of posting.

 

 

 

 

I hope someone read this- I didn't have any comments. My color, my religion, nor my race or my area has NOTHING to do with my love for my dogs. THIS IS WHAT THIS BOARD IS ABOUT!!!! I don't care what color you are, if you have a border collie, I WILL come up to you and talk to you. I love the breed. I imagine you do also. I watch, however, how you treat your dog. I love all herding breeds. At the dog parks, yes, I'll come up to you you and talk to you, ask you about your dog. I actually see more discrimination here towards "working breeds vs. show dogs" - NOW, it's turned into a racial thing? How did this happen? Let's get down to our LOVE for border collies and less to our HATE for other people different than us.

Dianne

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All I can say is, "Eh?"

Actually, the phrase “eh?” has played a very important role in the history of Canada. Many years ago, when this great land of the North was made up of individual states with no single name to unify them into a confederation, a summit was called to name the country. No consensus could be reached, so it was decided that multiples of all the letters in the English and French languages would be placed in a hat and drawn out at random; whatever resulted would be the country’s new name. An old Ontarian farmer was selected to pull the letters out of the hat. He began reaching in, and came up with the following: “C”, “eh?”; “N”, “eh?”; “D”, “eh?”. And that’s how Canada got its name…

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Actually, the phrase “eh?” has played a very important role in the history of Canada. Many years ago, when this great land of the North was made up of individual states with no single name to unify them into a confederation, a summit was called to name the country. No consensus could be reached, so it was decided that multiples of all the letters in the English and French languages would be placed in a hat and drawn out at random; whatever resulted would be the country’s new name. An old Ontarian farmer was selected to pull the letters out of the hat. He began reaching in, and came up with the following: “C”, “eh?”; “N”, “eh?”; “D”, “eh?”. And that’s how Canada got its name…

 

V...e...r...y funny, wise guy.... :rolleyes::D

A.

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You said that IF it's true that the black people where I live ARE in fact too lazy to clean up after their dogs, then it's okay to say so. I'm asking you what evidence would be sufficient to establish that such an invidious generalization is true.

I still don't get this whole "evidence" thing. This isn't a court of law, it's a message board where people are supposed to talk to each other.

But if evidence is what it takes for you, then how about a news article? You weren't bothered by the hispanic cheese heroin addicts story.

It wouldn't bother me at all, because I would assume that it's being said about a news story dealing with cheese heroin use among young Hispanics in south Texas. That is the subject of the news story.

If there were a news article discussing the lack of pooper scooping among the black population in Odiferous Heights, that would be ok for you?

If there were a news article discussing the use of aggressive pit bulls as status symbols in the hispanic community south of Houston would that be ok?

It's only not racist if the press says it? I was a member of the press for many years. What kind of evidence do you think the press is gathering for those stories? They're looking at police reports, sure. But they're also asking the neighbors. People who live and see and experience the problem first hand. You know, people like Foxglove.

So, if Foxglove had made her statement and backed it up with a link to a news article, would she be off the hook?

 

You'll just assume that I'm right in what I say, since that's only common courtesy. Naturally, then, you won't see anything wrong in my statement, or in the statement that started all this, since you courteously assume they are true.

You're misunderstanding me.

It's common courtesy not to jump in and label someone a racist without at least trying to understand the spirit and intent of the post in question. When I read Foxglove's post, I made a little extra effort to understand her intent because I felt her sentence was worded a little awkwardly.

There is a problem where she lives among some of the hispanic population using aggressive pit bulls as status symbols. I gave her the benefit of the doubt when reading her original post that this was what she was trying to say. I gave her the benefit of the doubt that she wasn't trying to label all hispanics as "badasses" or that she hates hispanics.

And, yes, I gave her the benefit of the doubt that she is telling the truth and she has seen this to be a problem in her neighborhood.

 

If I had been unsure that's what she was trying to say or thought her intent was malicious, I would have asked. Politely, if possible.

Something along the lines of "I'm not sure I get what you're trying to say here. Are you saying that all hispanics are badasses with pit bulls? That a pretty racist generalization, if you are."

Treating it this way invites communication with the poster.

Making a passive aggressive remark to the "room" doesn't.

 

eta: I just realized my last sentence is a bit passive aggressive itself. So let me fix that. I felt that Melanie's reaction to Foxglove's post was poorly handled and that the subsequent reaction from some others was a mounted attack. I feel that a better reaction would have been to address Foxglove directly instead of piling on until she "broke". And I feel that her subsequent apology was ignored and dismissed.

 

Also, Dianne, I'm certainly not ignoring you.

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Actually, the phrase "eh?" has played a very important role in the history of Canada. Many years ago, when this great land of the North was made up of individual states with no single name to unify them into a confederation, a summit was called to name the country. No consensus could be reached, so it was decided that multiples of all the letters in the English and French languages would be placed in a hat and drawn out at random; whatever resulted would be the country's new name. An old Ontarian farmer was selected to pull the letters out of the hat. He began reaching in, and came up with the following: "C", "eh?"; "N", "eh?"; "D", "eh?". And that's how Canada got its name…

 

That is hilarious!!! Actually, the Canuks I've known are generally friendly and unjaded...nice folks.

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