If I was the dood, i'd laugh at that.
Matthew 10:34Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.
~Following My Own Flow~
There are two things at play here:
1) The media in general try to put on the most entertaining show possible but sometimes that means risking "the line" between what will get you an award and what will get you fired. Anyone who plays it too safe or too loose with that will end up unemployed.
2) Many in the field of journalism aren't as smart as they think they are and tend to church up the presentation to show all of us on the consumption end that they are on a higher level. This fails for multiple reasons, including misusing phrases and words, incidents where the audience get bored of the drivel, and the granddaddy of them all is offending an audience whether intentionally or not. In fact, we were always taught in the program I was in to keep the discourse simple, the least advanced in the audience should enjoy it just as much as the most advanced.
* The best example of a journalist outsmarting themself is that incident where the radio personality was speaking of Condolezza Rice's potential bid to be NFL commissioner when he said it would be a major "coup in" the leage but said it just a little too fast. The audience percieved a slur and basically it was game over for that guy.
Had he kept it simple he still would have gotten the point across and wouldn't be percieved as "that idiot who blew his ride on the perception of a slur".
It is plausible these guys let an off color joke slip through though, and the fact that they chose poorly negates whether or not they are innocent because in the media world perception is king.
Neither side in an argument can find the truth when both make an absolute claim on it.
As for the why: Yes, the word "chink" and other words have a racist/racialized history. That is history the only way we let those words affect us the same way today is if we give them power over us. For example: gays took back the word "fag" by embracing it and now use it themselves in various ways.
Other people find various ways to utilize words to give them different meanings. Example: The word "nigger" was given a "funeral" by the NAACP in 2007 NAACP buries the word nigger, entertainers resurrect it:: Black Press Magazine.com While the NAACP and other community leaders tries to bury the racist history of the word, others such as musicians and other artists have embraced the word and use it in a variety of ways. Example: the word "Bitch", generally seen as a derogatory term for women, feminists brought new meaning to it by starting "Bitch" magazine, and in the same way as gays did, women took back the power by referring to each other as "bitches" in endearing ways.
I am not saying people should not feel something when these words are used, just remember they only have the meaning you allow them to. This employee may or may not have meant the word "chink" to be offensive, we will probably never know. As Enola pointed out, she didn't notice the racial undertones until it was mentioned, so why should anybody else?
It all depends on the old journalistic rules: who, what, why, when, where and how.
P.S.-- I see no one mentioned how "offensive" the term "Linderella" (referring to fairy tales and the Cinderella story--one of a girl forced into indentured servitude).
I responded to ThePlayDrive's post not only because of your concerns about racism but also because you use potentially offensive language in your signature. "Yo mama" and other "yo" jokes, especially those insinuating something to fear, are considered highly offensive by some.
Last edited by taxigirl; 02-21-12 at 04:07 AM.
I don't like this. To those who are against the editor, could this whole issue be considered a fallacy of equivocation, or not? The editor probably meant chink as in armor; a metaphor regarding competitive sports. He may have meant the other meaning, but wouldn't that be speculation? If certain people are going to nail others based on what those certain people perceive, shouldn't that hold for all? I would hate to see some of these same people get defensive should the shoe be on the other foot.