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Social Justice out of control

DrZoidberg

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If anybody has doubts of whether the social justice warrior society is out of control, take a look at this.

"Social media platform Twitter is dropping the terms "master", "slave" and "blacklist" in favour of more inclusive language."

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-53273923

This is in the code. It's not in communication material. It's in the code, which nobody other than programmers see. These are also terms that are standardised and universal within programming. They are also useful because they are clear and descriptive. If you have two thingy's on a network and one is called "the master" and the other "the slave" there's no doubt about which does what.

It's also going to be expensive. These kinds of code changes cost a lot of money to push through. I don't think they're thought this through. I think this is something the communication department came up with without fully involving the nerds, because this is just dumb.

I'm a lefty... but right now my chips are being moved over on the conservative side because this sort of lunacy has to be stopped. It's Newspeak. Reality is being replaced by virtue signalling symbols. Progressivism is being forced upon us in Moaist people's courts. While China just turned Hong Kong into an actual totalitarian Big Brother state, Putin became president for life, and the West worries about whether or not code might offend the handful of black programmers that come into contact with it. I suspect that most of their programming is done in India anyway, by people who have no reason to be offended by the term "slave".
 
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bigfield

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My first impression is that this is just a cynical PR move by Twitter management; they don't really believe this needs to be done for social justice.

In 1984, Oceania's government uses Newspeak to suppress any kind of dissenting thought of expression. In the real world, corporations are making token gestures to humour political activists and protect their advertising revenue. I don't think that is what Orwell was trying to warn us about.
 

DrZoidberg

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My first impression is that this is just a cynical PR move by Twitter management; they don't really believe this needs to be done for social justice.

In 1984, Oceania's government uses Newspeak to suppress any kind of dissenting thought of expression. In the real world, corporations are making token gestures to humour political activists and protect their advertising revenue. I don't think that is what Orwell was trying to warn us about.

Sure it's a PR move. But that's just the point. It's insane that is received positively, or even that they thought this was a good idea. The slave drive really is a slave to the master drive.

Meriam-Webster said:
The term "newspeak" was coined by George Orwell in his 1949 anti-utopian novel 1984. In Orwell's fictional totalitarian state, Newspeak was a language favored by the minions of Big Brother and, in Orwell's words, "designed to diminish the range of thought." Newspeak was characterized by the elimination or alteration of certain words, the substitution of one word for another, the interchangeability of parts of speech, and the creation of words for political purposes. The word has caught on in general use to refer to confusing or deceptive bureaucratic jargon.
 

bigfield

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Sure it's a PR move. But that's just the point. It's insane that is received positively, or even that they thought this was a good idea. The slave drive really is a slave to the master drive.

The tweet's replies seem consistently negative.
https://twitter.com/TwitterEng/status/1278733303508418560

I feel like it's an open secret at this point that corporations are completely full of shit, and people are just pretending that they aren't.
 

DrZoidberg

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Sure it's a PR move. But that's just the point. It's insane that is received positively, or even that they thought this was a good idea. The slave drive really is a slave to the master drive.

The tweet's replies seem consistently negative.
https://twitter.com/TwitterEng/status/1278733303508418560

I feel like it's an open secret at this point that corporations are completely full of shit, and people are just pretending that they aren't.

Hmm... Corporations do marketting. Aren't they expected to always be full of shit? Or let me re-phrase it. From the birth of marketting companies have had a lax attitude to truth. The goal was to trick the customer into buying a product. Once sold there was no need to look back. But today customers talk to eachother on social media. Marketting has to be true. That was no fun. So they switched from talking about their product to their values. Enter "the story". Marketting shifted to creating a narrative where the buyer was supposed to feel as a part of something greater than themselves. So each brand had to pick a moral crusade to be for or against. Which worked great as long as everybody agreed on what was good and what was bad. But that's run aground now as victim culture and pomo feminism seems to have taken over the leftist story and consumers are starting to react.

Isn't that just what is going on?
 

bigfield

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Sure it's a PR move. But that's just the point. It's insane that is received positively, or even that they thought this was a good idea. The slave drive really is a slave to the master drive.

The tweet's replies seem consistently negative.
https://twitter.com/TwitterEng/status/1278733303508418560

I feel like it's an open secret at this point that corporations are completely full of shit, and people are just pretending that they aren't.

Hmm... Corporations do marketting. Aren't they expected to always be full of shit? Or let me re-phrase it. From the birth of marketting companies have had a lax attitude to truth. The goal was to trick the customer into buying a product. Once sold there was no need to look back. But today customers talk to eachother on social media. Marketting has to be true. That was no fun. So they switched from talking about their product to their values. Enter "the story". Marketting shifted to creating a narrative where the buyer was supposed to feel as a part of something greater than themselves. So each brand had to pick a moral crusade to be for or against. Which worked great as long as everybody agreed on what was good and what was bad. But that's run aground now as victim culture and pomo feminism seems to have taken over the leftist story and consumers are starting to react.

Isn't that just what is going on?

I think there are different groups of people to consider:
- Cynics who think Twitter is full of shit but will keep using it anyway.
- Idealists who think it's good and meaningful that Twitter is making these changes, and will keep using Twitter even though Trump is on it.
- Idealists who are outraged that Twitter has gone mad with political correctness, but whose outrage can be framed as a good thing to boost Twitter's brand.

I don't see how victim culture and pomo feminism ties into this. The timing and stated justification indicates that this is a response to BLM.
 

DrZoidberg

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Hmm... Corporations do marketting. Aren't they expected to always be full of shit? Or let me re-phrase it. From the birth of marketting companies have had a lax attitude to truth. The goal was to trick the customer into buying a product. Once sold there was no need to look back. But today customers talk to eachother on social media. Marketting has to be true. That was no fun. So they switched from talking about their product to their values. Enter "the story". Marketting shifted to creating a narrative where the buyer was supposed to feel as a part of something greater than themselves. So each brand had to pick a moral crusade to be for or against. Which worked great as long as everybody agreed on what was good and what was bad. But that's run aground now as victim culture and pomo feminism seems to have taken over the leftist story and consumers are starting to react.

Isn't that just what is going on?

I think there are different groups of people to consider:
- Cynics who think Twitter is full of shit but will keep using it anyway.
- Idealists who think it's good and meaningful that Twitter is making these changes, and will keep using Twitter even though Trump is on it.
- Idealists who are outraged that Twitter has gone mad with political correctness, but whose outrage can be framed as a good thing to boost Twitter's brand.

I don't see how victim culture and pomo feminism ties into this. The timing and stated justification indicates that this is a response to BLM.

I see them both as different expressions of victim culture
 

steve_bank

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I am watching it happen in real time.

The Seattle so called 'autonomous zone protesting police action ended up with armed vigilante justice. Result, a car riddled with bullets and a dead kid. Surpession of free speech in the zone sometimes with force.

No due process. The power faction that emerged decided what was right and wrong.

A study in human dynamics. Power corrupts.

The graves of the parents in a cemetery near the zone of someone in my building's parent have been defaced.

It is out of control. Right now near where I live there are bands oif roving people ranting at police and throwing objects, and damaging property.
 
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fromderinside

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I am watching it happen in real time.

The Seattle so called 'autonomous zone protesting police action ended up with armed vigilante justice. Result, a car riddled with bullets and a dead kid. Surpession of free speech in the zone sometimes with force.

No due process. The power faction that emerged decided what was right and wrong.

A study in human dynamics. Power corrupts.

The graves of the parents in a cemetery near the zone of someone in my building's parent have been defaced.

It is out of control. Right now near where I live there are bands oif roving people ranting at police and throwing objects, and damaging property.

Wasn't it in 1967 that someone put up a sign just south of Seattle "Last one to leave shut the door"? Yet, Boeing having caused this, went out and acquired a failing MDC 30 years later.

Seattleites can't get enough of them can we? Oh, wait ... Boeing went to Chicago.*

*I think that Boeing moved because they were in love Lockheed-Martin which moved from LA to Atlanta. So rather than coming south to LA they changed their minds and went to the Windy City. No way were they going to St. Louis. They already had that turkey. The real reason Boeing left Seattle was because they can't stand being compared with competent companies like Amazon, Microsoft and Starbucks. In conclusion all can't be bad because there are competent people up there.
 
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steve_bank

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That was purely economic. Before MS and Amazon as Boeing went so went he state.
 

fromderinside

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It was both political and economic. Back in the day, 1964, I was chief strategist for democrat running Congress in SE Washington. We won by going all Mushroom cloud on our republican friends (Hanford area). My MG was decked out with No AuH20 and Bury Barry, both with a little girl picking flowers in front of a mushroom shaped cloud. In 1967 Washington had more flower children in Seattle area than did San Diego or Anaheim in California.

I think I acknowledged the before Microsoft with the 'turn off the lights' sign (it wasn't shut the door). I should have given Adobe a shout out as well.

I came up to Seattle to troubleshoot for Boeing Military T&E and Commercial R&M on everything from TQM to Man machine certification to Tactical Electronic systems Integration six times between 1998 and 2002. They didn't seem to be data driven enough. Boeing had a reputation for more of an engineer's touch and feel approach.

I think that's why Lockheed-Martin won the Advanced Tactical A/C contract over the MDC/Boeing team. My brother worked for Lockheed from 1980 to 1992 (early phase competition) while I was with PMTC (competition evaluation) , then MDC/Boeing from 1980 -2002 (early and phase two competition).

Not a lot to do with social justice. Very much to do with Engineering aspects of social science.

Back to the core issue. It's tough for politicians, particularly democrats, to choose between BLM and L&O when voting constituencies are involved. I share the Mayor's reticence. Hijacking by militants is always a potential problem with justified anti-authority social protest.

My view is that the fearful are always more sympathetic to racist responses. I believe that is why our Police forces now seem to look and act like military units.

Gotta thank Reagon for wiping social and mental services in the name of budget, for profit solutions, and status quo, donchathink?

We actually had a pretty good public mental health and drug intervention system before he came along.

I'm claiming the right of an old pfart to mentally wander around a bit.
 
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steve_bank

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Right now there are about 20 bicycle police lined up across from building.
 

ronburgundy

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If anybody has doubts of whether the social justice warrior society is out of control, take a look at this.

"Social media platform Twitter is dropping the terms "master", "slave" and "blacklist" in favour of more inclusive language."

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-53273923

This is in the code. It's not in communication material. It's in the code, which nobody other than programmers see. These are also terms that are standardised and universal within programming. They are also useful because they are clear and descriptive. If you have two thingy's on a network and one is called "the master" and the other "the slave" there's no doubt about which does what.

It's also going to be expensive. These kinds of code changes cost a lot of money to push through. I don't think they're thought this through. I think this is something the communication department came up with without fully involving the nerds, because this is just dumb.

I'm a lefty... but right now my chips are being moved over on the conservative side because this sort of lunacy has to be stopped. It's Newspeak. Reality is being replaced by virtue signalling symbols. Progressivism is being forced upon us in Moaist people's courts. While China just turned Hong Kong into an actual totalitarian Big Brother state, Putin became president for life, and the West worries about whether or not code might offend the handful of black programmers that come into contact with it. I suspect that most of their programming is done in India anyway, by people who have no reason to be offended by the term "slave".

One company has chosen to stop using coding language with obvious and strong associations with slavery and concepts of "white" = good, "black" = bad. Even if it's historical coincidence (and it may not be) that "blacklisting"/"whitelisting" have meanings perfectly aligned with white supremacist ideology, the similarity in meaning makes the psychological association real and strong.

Also, it is ironic that one of your arguments against this is that only "a handful of black programmers" even see that coding language.
So, you think that a company being sensitive (arguably over sensitive) to the objective semantic overlap between these terms and racist ideology and racist historical events is a a bigger problem for society than the fact that due to that ideology and events blacks in America continue to be so poor and receive such poor education that they represent only a handful (4%) of programmers. You think that the left's concerns with the objectively rampant racism and white supremacy in the US which may lead to some over-sensitivity to language concerns warrants leaving the left for the very conservatism that has and still does promote real white supremacist ideology. Unless you OP is just an off the cuff drunken rant showing you over-reacting to someone else's potential over-reaction, then you aren't close to a liberal let alone a lefty.
 

steve_bank

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In manufacturing the word jig was common for mechanical fixtures. It was phased out because it is also a slur.
 

Copernicus

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I don't believe that Twitter's overreaction to a somewhat misguided article on linguistic usage justifies the generalization that "the social justice warrior society is out of control". These efforts to reframe debates by changing language happen all the time, and they almost always go nowhere. The failed efforts of the Acadèmie Française prove that tails don't wag dogs when it comes to language change. Most people pay no attention to linguistic witch hunts.
 

DrZoidberg

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If anybody has doubts of whether the social justice warrior society is out of control, take a look at this.

"Social media platform Twitter is dropping the terms "master", "slave" and "blacklist" in favour of more inclusive language."

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-53273923

This is in the code. It's not in communication material. It's in the code, which nobody other than programmers see. These are also terms that are standardised and universal within programming. They are also useful because they are clear and descriptive. If you have two thingy's on a network and one is called "the master" and the other "the slave" there's no doubt about which does what.

It's also going to be expensive. These kinds of code changes cost a lot of money to push through. I don't think they're thought this through. I think this is something the communication department came up with without fully involving the nerds, because this is just dumb.

I'm a lefty... but right now my chips are being moved over on the conservative side because this sort of lunacy has to be stopped. It's Newspeak. Reality is being replaced by virtue signalling symbols. Progressivism is being forced upon us in Moaist people's courts. While China just turned Hong Kong into an actual totalitarian Big Brother state, Putin became president for life, and the West worries about whether or not code might offend the handful of black programmers that come into contact with it. I suspect that most of their programming is done in India anyway, by people who have no reason to be offended by the term "slave".

One company has chosen to stop using coding language with obvious and strong associations with slavery and concepts of "white" = good, "black" = bad. Even if it's historical coincidence (and it may not be) that "blacklisting"/"whitelisting" have meanings perfectly aligned with white supremacist ideology, the similarity in meaning makes the psychological association real and strong.

Also, it is ironic that one of your arguments against this is that only "a handful of black programmers" even see that coding language.
So, you think that a company being sensitive (arguably over sensitive) to the objective semantic overlap between these terms and racist ideology and racist historical events is a a bigger problem for society than the fact that due to that ideology and events blacks in America continue to be so poor and receive such poor education that they represent only a handful (4%) of programmers. You think that the left's concerns with the objectively rampant racism and white supremacy in the US which may lead to some over-sensitivity to language concerns warrants leaving the left for the very conservatism that has and still does promote real white supremacist ideology. Unless you OP is just an off the cuff drunken rant showing you over-reacting to someone else's potential over-reaction, then you aren't close to a liberal let alone a lefty.

Yeah, thinking that changing some symbolic words can lessen the effects of racism is retarded.

Black/white terminology has perhaps more to do with illumination than skin colour, perhaps?

Lessening the effects of racism requires class analysis. Otherwise you're only removing the symptom. Not the cause. All I see is theatre. Not any genuine attempts to stop racism
 

DrZoidberg

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I don't believe that Twitter's overreaction to a somewhat misguided article on linguistic usage justifies the generalization that "the social justice warrior society is out of control". These efforts to reframe debates by changing language happen all the time, and they almost always go nowhere. The failed efforts of the Acadèmie Française prove that tails don't wag dogs when it comes to language change. Most people pay no attention to linguistic witch hunts.

Its just the latest example. I think it became pretty nuts a long time ago. Now it's just insane.
 

Angry Floof

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So what? Give your cardiovascular system a rest. At worst, it's a misguided use of programmers' time and effort. No one brutalized. No one unjustly arrested or imprisoned. No one's property stolen or damaged.

And when you think of how deeply influential language is on how we perceive the world around us (language runs deep in our neural pathways; it's not just a superficial layer of conscious, verbal thought-symbols), this action reflects a sensitivity to the more subtle, and therefore actually more powerful and insidious, ideological environment we create for everyone.

But I recognize that not everyone thinks more deeply into any situation than what is most immediate, inflammatory, and reaction inducing. (That is also the creative power of language in action.)
 

Worldtraveller

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I don't believe that Twitter's overreaction to a somewhat misguided article on linguistic usage justifies the generalization that "the social justice warrior society is out of control". These efforts to reframe debates by changing language happen all the time, and they almost always go nowhere. The failed efforts of the Acadèmie Française prove that tails don't wag dogs when it comes to language change. Most people pay no attention to linguistic witch hunts.

Its just the latest example. I think it became pretty nuts a long time ago. Now it's just insane.
Yeah. It's really terrible that so many people are seeking social justice from the society in which they live.

What IS this world coming to?
 

rousseau

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If anybody has doubts of whether the social justice warrior society is out of control, take a look at this.

"Social media platform Twitter is dropping the terms "master", "slave" and "blacklist" in favour of more inclusive language."

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-53273923

This is in the code. It's not in communication material. It's in the code, which nobody other than programmers see. These are also terms that are standardised and universal within programming. They are also useful because they are clear and descriptive. If you have two thingy's on a network and one is called "the master" and the other "the slave" there's no doubt about which does what.

It's also going to be expensive. These kinds of code changes cost a lot of money to push through. I don't think they're thought this through. I think this is something the communication department came up with without fully involving the nerds, because this is just dumb.

I'm a lefty... but right now my chips are being moved over on the conservative side because this sort of lunacy has to be stopped. It's Newspeak. Reality is being replaced by virtue signalling symbols. Progressivism is being forced upon us in Moaist people's courts. While China just turned Hong Kong into an actual totalitarian Big Brother state, Putin became president for life, and the West worries about whether or not code might offend the handful of black programmers that come into contact with it. I suspect that most of their programming is done in India anyway, by people who have no reason to be offended by the term "slave".

One company has chosen to stop using coding language with obvious and strong associations with slavery and concepts of "white" = good, "black" = bad. Even if it's historical coincidence (and it may not be) that "blacklisting"/"whitelisting" have meanings perfectly aligned with white supremacist ideology, the similarity in meaning makes the psychological association real and strong.

Also, it is ironic that one of your arguments against this is that only "a handful of black programmers" even see that coding language.
So, you think that a company being sensitive (arguably over sensitive) to the objective semantic overlap between these terms and racist ideology and racist historical events is a a bigger problem for society than the fact that due to that ideology and events blacks in America continue to be so poor and receive such poor education that they represent only a handful (4%) of programmers. You think that the left's concerns with the objectively rampant racism and white supremacy in the US which may lead to some over-sensitivity to language concerns warrants leaving the left for the very conservatism that has and still does promote real white supremacist ideology. Unless you OP is just an off the cuff drunken rant showing you over-reacting to someone else's potential over-reaction, then you aren't close to a liberal let alone a lefty.

Yeah, thinking that changing some symbolic words can lessen the effects of racism is retarded.

Black/white terminology has perhaps more to do with illumination than skin colour, perhaps?

Lessening the effects of racism requires class analysis. Otherwise you're only removing the symptom. Not the cause. All I see is theatre. Not any genuine attempts to stop racism

My understanding is that this isn't being done to lessen the effects of racism, it's being done in an effort to be more inclusive of people of colour.

Originally I was on your side on this issue, but then I thought about how I'd feel as a programmer with African ancestry, constantly seeing the terms 'master/slave' every day. It might be subtle, but it's a concept that's had an overwhelming negative influence on these people's history. So getting rid of it certainly signals to people of colour that they're more welcome in the industry, and avoids an obvious trigger for their long, awful history.
 

DrZoidberg

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I don't believe that Twitter's overreaction to a somewhat misguided article on linguistic usage justifies the generalization that "the social justice warrior society is out of control". These efforts to reframe debates by changing language happen all the time, and they almost always go nowhere. The failed efforts of the Acadèmie Française prove that tails don't wag dogs when it comes to language change. Most people pay no attention to linguistic witch hunts.

Its just the latest example. I think it became pretty nuts a long time ago. Now it's just insane.
Yeah. It's really terrible that so many people are seeking social justice from the society in which they live.

What IS this world coming to?

Its not social justice. Its an act. Its preserving racism by pretending you care when you don't. Instead of doing things that work we do symbolic actions intended to preserve the status quo. I don't think any of these social justice warriors and BLM activists actually want to stop racism.

I think it's just outrage culture. People like being angry. People like being victims. Why else is all focus on absolute bullshit, and bullshit alone?
 

DrZoidberg

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Yeah, thinking that changing some symbolic words can lessen the effects of racism is retarded.

Black/white terminology has perhaps more to do with illumination than skin colour, perhaps?

Lessening the effects of racism requires class analysis. Otherwise you're only removing the symptom. Not the cause. All I see is theatre. Not any genuine attempts to stop racism

My understanding is that this isn't being done to lessen the effects of racism, it's being done in an effort to be more inclusive of people of colour.

I call bullshit. Inclusivity comes from giving people jobs and civic responsibilities. Not magical words.

Originally I was on your side on this issue, but then I thought about how I'd feel as a programmer with African ancestry, constantly seeing the terms 'master/slave' every day. It might be subtle, but it's a concept that's had an overwhelming negative influence on these people's history. So getting rid of it certainly signals to people of colour that they're more welcome in the industry, and avoids an obvious trigger for their long, awful history.

I don't think it works. I'd like to see something that backs it up. I think the logical chain to support it is exceedingly weak
 

fromderinside

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Addressing racism isn't about embracing arms akimbo to those abused. It's about natural examples from authority of inclusion and brotherhood. We are moving forward. Veeerry slowly but forward nevertheless. Face it. They're holding the balls. NFL and FIFA acceptance of bended knee are powerful examples.

When NFL and NCAA take the field this fall in empty television equipped stadiums symbols of inclusion will be featured in a standard way at every game. It will be about those participating, not about those watching and screamng at the stadium.. That focus will be by advertisers and it's obvious where they are going. After all a customer is a customer regardless of color, ethnicity, sex, age, or faith.
 
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bigfield

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Its not social justice. Its an act. Its preserving racism by pretending you care when you don't. Instead of doing things that work we do symbolic actions intended to preserve the status quo. I don't think any of these social justice warriors and BLM activists actually want to stop racism.

It seems to suit Twitter, and the other companies making these symbolic changes, to preserve the status quo. That would explain why they are doing it. They aren't going to do anything substantial that might threaten their profits.

I suppose what we're seeing here is the intersection of social justice and capitalism.
 

rousseau

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I call bullshit. Inclusivity comes from giving people jobs and civic responsibilities. Not magical words.

Originally I was on your side on this issue, but then I thought about how I'd feel as a programmer with African ancestry, constantly seeing the terms 'master/slave' every day. It might be subtle, but it's a concept that's had an overwhelming negative influence on these people's history. So getting rid of it certainly signals to people of colour that they're more welcome in the industry, and avoids an obvious trigger for their long, awful history.

I don't think it works. I'd like to see something that backs it up. I think the logical chain to support it is exceedingly weak

That is a fair critique but a bit aside from the issue. It's still a positive step with largely no down-side. Not having done [y] isn't really a solid argument as to why not do an unrelated [x].

Language matters. It might not be trans-formative, but it matters.

To your point I can feasibly see this type of action being taken too far, but getting rid of the term 'blacklist' doesn't strike me as such an example. In this we'll probably have to agree to disagree.
 

DrZoidberg

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I call bullshit. Inclusivity comes from giving people jobs and civic responsibilities. Not magical words.

Originally I was on your side on this issue, but then I thought about how I'd feel as a programmer with African ancestry, constantly seeing the terms 'master/slave' every day. It might be subtle, but it's a concept that's had an overwhelming negative influence on these people's history. So getting rid of it certainly signals to people of colour that they're more welcome in the industry, and avoids an obvious trigger for their long, awful history.

I don't think it works. I'd like to see something that backs it up. I think the logical chain to support it is exceedingly weak

That is a fair critique but a bit aside from the issue. It's still a positive step with largely no down-side. Not having done [y] isn't really a solid argument as to why not do an unrelated [x].

Language matters. It might not be trans-formative, but it matters.

To your point I can feasibly see this type of action being taken too far, but getting rid of the term 'blacklist' doesn't strike me as such an example. In this we'll probably have to agree to disagree.

The Saphir-Worff hypothesis was false. When they studied various languages they projected exotism and racist bullshit onto them. Yes, words matter. But human brains are sophisticated. Just removing a racist word doesn't lessen racism. Nobody becomes a racist from reading Mein Kampf, nor a Christian from reading the Bible. They exist in a larger context.

Nixon used welfare to break apart black communities and made them depend on government hand outs. To make them easier to control. He did this while claiming he was trying to help them. The actions matter more than the words
 

rousseau

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That is a fair critique but a bit aside from the issue. It's still a positive step with largely no down-side. Not having done [y] isn't really a solid argument as to why not do an unrelated [x].

Language matters. It might not be trans-formative, but it matters.

To your point I can feasibly see this type of action being taken too far, but getting rid of the term 'blacklist' doesn't strike me as such an example. In this we'll probably have to agree to disagree.

The Saphir-Worff hypothesis was false. When they studied various languages they projected exotism and racist bullshit onto them. Yes, words matter. But human brains are sophisticated. Just removing a racist word doesn't lessen racism. Nobody becomes a racist from reading Mein Kampf, nor a Christian from reading the Bible. They exist in a larger context.

Nixon used welfare to break apart black communities and made them depend on government hand outs. To make them easier to control. He did this while claiming he was trying to help them. The actions matter more than the words

Because again, removing the words has nothing to do with lessening racism, and everything to do with it's impact on real people in everyday usage. It's the same reason we collectively stopped using the term 'mentally retarded'. I don't think anybody believed the term led to an increase in discrimination, but it does infer and imply a specific belief about the disabled, largely that they're 'not as good' as people without disabilities. We don't change the term to fundamentally change the world, we change it because there are better terms to use, and doing so isn't a big deal.

Similarly, I don't think anyone believes that Twitter changing a few words is going to seriously impact racism, because the point isn't to impact racism at all, it's to use more inclusive language.

You may have a point that there are more fundamental things we can do, but that in itself isn't a good reason not to use more inclusive language. It's an easy step to make, so why not make it.

Now you may disagree with me that these terms are problematic, and that's ok. But you're completely misinterpreting the point of taking this action.
 

ruby sparks

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But you're completely misinterpreting the point of taking this action.

By twitter? I haven’t looked closely and I don’t use twitter, but corporate virtue signalling would be high on my list of suspects.

Which is why the OP is making a point about the sort of cynical capitalism that that represents.

No wait, social justice warriors are the problem.

No wait...
 

ronburgundy

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If anybody has doubts of whether the social justice warrior society is out of control, take a look at this.

"Social media platform Twitter is dropping the terms "master", "slave" and "blacklist" in favour of more inclusive language."

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-53273923

This is in the code. It's not in communication material. It's in the code, which nobody other than programmers see. These are also terms that are standardised and universal within programming. They are also useful because they are clear and descriptive. If you have two thingy's on a network and one is called "the master" and the other "the slave" there's no doubt about which does what.

It's also going to be expensive. These kinds of code changes cost a lot of money to push through. I don't think they're thought this through. I think this is something the communication department came up with without fully involving the nerds, because this is just dumb.

I'm a lefty... but right now my chips are being moved over on the conservative side because this sort of lunacy has to be stopped. It's Newspeak. Reality is being replaced by virtue signalling symbols. Progressivism is being forced upon us in Moaist people's courts. While China just turned Hong Kong into an actual totalitarian Big Brother state, Putin became president for life, and the West worries about whether or not code might offend the handful of black programmers that come into contact with it. I suspect that most of their programming is done in India anyway, by people who have no reason to be offended by the term "slave".

One company has chosen to stop using coding language with obvious and strong associations with slavery and concepts of "white" = good, "black" = bad. Even if it's historical coincidence (and it may not be) that "blacklisting"/"whitelisting" have meanings perfectly aligned with white supremacist ideology, the similarity in meaning makes the psychological association real and strong.

Also, it is ironic that one of your arguments against this is that only "a handful of black programmers" even see that coding language.
So, you think that a company being sensitive (arguably over sensitive) to the objective semantic overlap between these terms and racist ideology and racist historical events is a a bigger problem for society than the fact that due to that ideology and events blacks in America continue to be so poor and receive such poor education that they represent only a handful (4%) of programmers. You think that the left's concerns with the objectively rampant racism and white supremacy in the US which may lead to some over-sensitivity to language concerns warrants leaving the left for the very conservatism that has and still does promote real white supremacist ideology. Unless you OP is just an off the cuff drunken rant showing you over-reacting to someone else's potential over-reaction, then you aren't close to a liberal let alone a lefty.

Yeah, thinking that changing some symbolic words can lessen the effects of racism is retarded.

Black/white terminology has perhaps more to do with illumination than skin colour, perhaps?

Lessening the effects of racism requires class analysis. Otherwise you're only removing the symptom. Not the cause. All I see is theatre. Not any genuine attempts to stop racism

I didn't say changing these words would meaningfully reduce racism, and in fact said they may reflect "over-sensitivity to language".
But the semantic connection to racist practices and ideology is real, and even if white-black positive-negative have their metaphorical origins to illumination, the same concept being foundational to racist notions is still real.
You're not in the context of the US where slavery and white supremacy aren't things of the distant past, but where 45% of the population and 80% of conservatives want to preserve monuments created entirely by, for, and in favor of slavery and white supremacy.
That's the real racism, not coding language, but that's the highly racist social context that makes it not "insane" to imagine that those handful of black programmers who manage to get past all the extra hurdles in their way might cringe when they have to deal with language about master and slave and equating white with good and black with bad. In fact, it was a black programmer at twitter who spearheaded the issue. And maybe even so, it isn't worth the distraction or hassle, and it's silly or "retarded", but it's nowhere near the demise of society you make it out to be, and nowhere near as bad as the racism-motivated denial of any societal racism by the conservatives you suggest are becoming a better alternative to the left.
 

ruby sparks

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Does anyone on the actual left use the term social justice warriors as a pejorative? If so, I was not aware of it.
 

steve_bank

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Does anyone on the actual left use the term social justice warriors as a pejorative? If so, I was not aware of it.

Haven't heard it especially, but the rhetoric here in Seattle is one of war.

Guns were being handed out in the autonomous zone and self appointed armed security patrolled.
 

Loren Pechtel

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In manufacturing the word jig was common for mechanical fixtures. It was phased out because it is also a slur.

What's wrong with jig? I've never known any other meaning besides the manufacturing one.
 

skepticalbip

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Does anyone on the actual left use the term social justice warriors as a pejorative? If so, I was not aware of it.

Haven't heard it especially, but the rhetoric here in Seattle is one of war.
I haven't heard the term 'social justice warriors' as a pejorative by the left but I have heard the term used by the left as a title of honor and, figuratively, as a call to arms.
Guns were being handed out in the autonomous zone and self appointed armed security patrolled.
With a few shootings resulting in two killed and several wounded.
 

steve_bank

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In manufacturing the word jig was common for mechanical fixtures. It was phased out because it is also a slur.

What's wrong with jig? I've never known any other meaning besides the manufacturing one.

When I was a kid there was a black slur 'jig a boo'. Heard it from an uncle.
 

Worldtraveller

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I haven't heard the term 'social justice warriors' as a pejorative by the left but I have heard the term used by the left as a title of honor and, figuratively, as a call to arms.
Guns were being handed out in the autonomous zone and self appointed armed security patrolled.
With a few shootings resulting in two killed and several wounded.
Probably fewer than would be killed by cops in the same time frame. Baby steps.
 

DrZoidberg

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That is a fair critique but a bit aside from the issue. It's still a positive step with largely no down-side. Not having done [y] isn't really a solid argument as to why not do an unrelated [x].

Language matters. It might not be trans-formative, but it matters.

To your point I can feasibly see this type of action being taken too far, but getting rid of the term 'blacklist' doesn't strike me as such an example. In this we'll probably have to agree to disagree.

The Saphir-Worff hypothesis was false. When they studied various languages they projected exotism and racist bullshit onto them. Yes, words matter. But human brains are sophisticated. Just removing a racist word doesn't lessen racism. Nobody becomes a racist from reading Mein Kampf, nor a Christian from reading the Bible. They exist in a larger context.

Nixon used welfare to break apart black communities and made them depend on government hand outs. To make them easier to control. He did this while claiming he was trying to help them. The actions matter more than the words

Because again, removing the words has nothing to do with lessening racism, and everything to do with it's impact on real people in everyday usage. It's the same reason we collectively stopped using the term 'mentally retarded'. I don't think anybody believed the term led to an increase in discrimination, but it does infer and imply a specific belief about the disabled, largely that they're 'not as good' as people without disabilities. We don't change the term to fundamentally change the world, we change it because there are better terms to use, and doing so isn't a big deal.

Similarly, I don't think anyone believes that Twitter changing a few words is going to seriously impact racism, because the point isn't to impact racism at all, it's to use more inclusive language.

You may have a point that there are more fundamental things we can do, but that in itself isn't a good reason not to use more inclusive language. It's an easy step to make, so why not make it.

Now you may disagree with me that these terms are problematic, and that's ok. But you're completely misinterpreting the point of taking this action.

Exactly. You put your finger on it. Instead of retarded we say mentally challenged. But everybody hears retarded when we say mentally challenged. It's a pointless exercise. It's virtue signalling. When you say "n-word" you are saying the word "nigger". It's the same information content. We've just decided one is OK and the other isn't.

This shit is everywhere in modern Western society and its intellectualy dishonest as well as retarding. Its an attempt to hide what we mean in plain sight. Just to confuse. In case the dumbest members of our community are ofended. But it's just a dumb excerise.
 

rousseau

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Because again, removing the words has nothing to do with lessening racism, and everything to do with it's impact on real people in everyday usage. It's the same reason we collectively stopped using the term 'mentally retarded'. I don't think anybody believed the term led to an increase in discrimination, but it does infer and imply a specific belief about the disabled, largely that they're 'not as good' as people without disabilities. We don't change the term to fundamentally change the world, we change it because there are better terms to use, and doing so isn't a big deal.

Similarly, I don't think anyone believes that Twitter changing a few words is going to seriously impact racism, because the point isn't to impact racism at all, it's to use more inclusive language.

You may have a point that there are more fundamental things we can do, but that in itself isn't a good reason not to use more inclusive language. It's an easy step to make, so why not make it.

Now you may disagree with me that these terms are problematic, and that's ok. But you're completely misinterpreting the point of taking this action.

Exactly. You put your finger on it. Instead of retarded we say mentally challenged. But everybody hears retarded when we say mentally challenged. It's a pointless exercise. It's virtue signalling. When you say "n-word" you are saying the word "nigger". It's the same information content. We've just decided one is OK and the other isn't.

This shit is everywhere in modern Western society and its intellectualy dishonest as well as retarding. Its an attempt to hide what we mean in plain sight. Just to confuse. In case the dumbest members of our community are ofended. But it's just a dumb excerise.

Is that true? Everybody? How would we even begin to quantify that? And how do we know that these minor changes won't have major impacts on our social awareness in many decades, even centuries?

And even if the change has absolutely no impact, why not use a better term just because it's a better term?
 

skepticalbip

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I haven't heard the term 'social justice warriors' as a pejorative by the left but I have heard the term used by the left as a title of honor and, figuratively, as a call to arms.
Guns were being handed out in the autonomous zone and self appointed armed security patrolled.
With a few shootings resulting in two killed and several wounded.
Probably fewer than would be killed by cops in the same time frame. Baby steps.

You don't seem to understand statistics. Even in war zones like Afghanistan, the killing rate was seven per hundred thousand population killed last year... That is a damn high killing rate. How many 'residents' do you think there are in the CHOP zone that the two deaths can be compared to? Maybe a couple hundred at most?
 

Bomb#20

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Because again, removing the words has nothing to do with lessening racism, and everything to do with it's impact on real people in everyday usage. It's the same reason we collectively stopped using the term 'mentally retarded'. I don't think anybody believed the term led to an increase in discrimination, but it does infer and imply a specific belief about the disabled, largely that they're 'not as good' as people without disabilities. We don't change the term to fundamentally change the world, we change it because there are better terms to use, and doing so isn't a big deal.
But the whole point of adopting the term "retarded" in the first place, in preference to the old term "feeble minded", was that "retarded" was supposed to stop implying that they're not as good as people without disabilities, and lead to a decrease in discrimination. "Retarded" means "delayed". The message was precisely that they'd be just as good as people without disabilities if only the rest of us would give them the extra time they need. We're dropping the word now not because of what it implies but because of the negative connotations it has picked up over the last hundred-odd years as a result of being used to refer to mental disabilities.

This is how pejoratives typically work: people don't look down on the referent because of the disparaging word; it's a disparaging word because people look down on the referent. Hence the euphemism treadmill -- if we replace "retarded" with "challenged" then sooner or later there will be a campaign to stop calling people "challenged" because it will be perceived as insulting. Future activists will be disparaging the motives and small-mindedness of the benighted bigots of the past, and of the benighted bigots of the present who haven't come up to speed with the latest fashion, for being so careless of hurt feelings that they'd call their fellows "challenged". The euphemism treadmill may well be a good thing for society anyway -- changing a word every few decades is a small price to pay for making people not feel insulted -- but let's not kid ourselves that the new term is better than the old term. It's just different. And that's its purpose.
 

rousseau

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Because again, removing the words has nothing to do with lessening racism, and everything to do with it's impact on real people in everyday usage. It's the same reason we collectively stopped using the term 'mentally retarded'. I don't think anybody believed the term led to an increase in discrimination, but it does infer and imply a specific belief about the disabled, largely that they're 'not as good' as people without disabilities. We don't change the term to fundamentally change the world, we change it because there are better terms to use, and doing so isn't a big deal.
But the whole point of adopting the term "retarded" in the first place, in preference to the old term "feeble minded", was that "retarded" was supposed to stop implying that they're not as good as people without disabilities, and lead to a decrease in discrimination. "Retarded" means "delayed". The message was precisely that they'd be just as good as people without disabilities if only the rest of us would give them the extra time they need. We're dropping the word now not because of what it implies but because of the negative connotations it has picked up over the last hundred-odd years as a result of being used to refer to mental disabilities.

This is how pejoratives typically work: people don't look down on the referent because of the disparaging word; it's a disparaging word because people look down on the referent. Hence the euphemism treadmill -- if we replace "retarded" with "challenged" then sooner or later there will be a campaign to stop calling people "challenged" because it will be perceived as insulting. Future activists will be disparaging the motives and small-mindedness of the benighted bigots of the past, and of the benighted bigots of the present who haven't come up to speed with the latest fashion, for being so careless of hurt feelings that they'd call their fellows "challenged". The euphemism treadmill may well be a good thing for society anyway -- changing a word every few decades is a small price to pay for making people not feel insulted -- but let's not kid ourselves that the new term is better than the old term. It's just different. And that's its purpose.

I don't know that this is the case. I'm not exactly sure what the vogue terms are now, but I don't think they're 'challenged'. The move away from 'retarded' is so that we don't frame the existence of those with disabilities in terms of how they are divergent from the 'normal' or 'proper' person who is more economically successful than them. This is the point of the evolution of language - we change it to work better for us. We want to phrase things differently than before because people even as close to us as the early twentieth century were dumb as nails, and we want to stop being like them.

To those of us who grew up with a specific term this can seem silly, but once you change the term and new people are born into it they start to think differently. I work on a university campus and I can tell you that the younger generation isn't like us. It might not be easy for us to see now as we sit in amber, but these subtle changes we're making will have profound impacts down the line.
 

Copernicus

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Because again, removing the words has nothing to do with lessening racism, and everything to do with it's impact on real people in everyday usage. It's the same reason we collectively stopped using the term 'mentally retarded'. I don't think anybody believed the term led to an increase in discrimination, but it does infer and imply a specific belief about the disabled, largely that they're 'not as good' as people without disabilities. We don't change the term to fundamentally change the world, we change it because there are better terms to use, and doing so isn't a big deal.
But the whole point of adopting the term "retarded" in the first place, in preference to the old term "feeble minded", was that "retarded" was supposed to stop implying that they're not as good as people without disabilities, and lead to a decrease in discrimination. "Retarded" means "delayed". The message was precisely that they'd be just as good as people without disabilities if only the rest of us would give them the extra time they need. We're dropping the word now not because of what it implies but because of the negative connotations it has picked up over the last hundred-odd years as a result of being used to refer to mental disabilities.

This is how pejoratives typically work: people don't look down on the referent because of the disparaging word; it's a disparaging word because people look down on the referent. Hence the euphemism treadmill -- if we replace "retarded" with "challenged" then sooner or later there will be a campaign to stop calling people "challenged" because it will be perceived as insulting. Future activists will be disparaging the motives and small-mindedness of the benighted bigots of the past, and of the benighted bigots of the present who haven't come up to speed with the latest fashion, for being so careless of hurt feelings that they'd call their fellows "challenged". The euphemism treadmill may well be a good thing for society anyway -- changing a word every few decades is a small price to pay for making people not feel insulted -- but let's not kid ourselves that the new term is better than the old term. It's just different. And that's its purpose.

I don't know that this is the case. I'm not exactly sure what the vogue terms are now, but I don't think they're 'challenged'. The move away from 'retarded' is so that we don't frame the existence of those with disabilities in terms of how they are divergent from the 'normal' or 'proper' person who is more economically successful than them. This is the point of the evolution of language - we change it to work better for us. We want to phrase things differently than before because people even as close to us as the early twentieth century were dumb as nails, and we want to stop being like them.

To those of us who grew up with a specific term this can seem silly, but once you change the term and new people are born into it they start to think differently. I work on a university campus and I can tell you that the younger generation isn't like us. It might not be easy for us to see now as we sit in amber, but these subtle changes we're making will have profound impacts down the line.

I agree with both Bomb and rousseau, because I don't think that what they are saying is fundamentally at odds. Bomb has accurately described how euphemism works as a linguistic process. If attitudes don't change, then the less stigmatized word takes on the stigma of the earlier term. We see that in historical chains of word replacements. However, the attempt to replace a stigmatized word with a more neutral or positive sounding word is part of a normal process of negotiating word usage to achieve some sort of change in social attitudes towards the subject being named. So "Negro" became "colored" which became "black" which became "African American". The NAACP used to stand for "National Association for the Advancement of Colored People", but the organization changed its official name to "NAACP" because of the stigma associated with the word "colored". Those who have opposed abortion wanted people to refer to them with the positive-sounding name "pro-life", even though many "pro-lifers" favor ending adult human lives under certain circumstances.

My point is that changing a name does not itself do anything other than temporarily put down a kind of social marker that attitudes need to change. Opposing the change as being an exercise in hypocrisy and "political correctness" may seem justifiable, especially to conservative-minded people, but it can also be perceived as an attack on the need to change behavior and attitudes.

For reference, see The Journey from 'Colored' to 'Minorities' to 'People of Color'.
 

Loren Pechtel

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I agree with both Bomb and rousseau, because I don't think that what they are saying is fundamentally at odds. Bomb has accurately described how euphemism works as a linguistic process. If attitudes don't change, then the less stigmatized word takes on the stigma of the earlier term. We see that in historical chains of word replacements. However, the attempt to replace a stigmatized word with a more neutral or positive sounding word is part of a normal process of negotiating word usage to achieve some sort of change in social attitudes towards the subject being named. So "Negro" became "colored" which became "black" which became "African American". The NAACP used to stand for "National Association for the Advancement of Colored People", but the organization changed its official name to "NAACP" because of the stigma associated with the word "colored". Those who have opposed abortion wanted people to refer to them with the positive-sounding name "pro-life", even though many "pro-lifers" favor ending adult human lives under certain circumstances.

My point is that changing a name does not itself do anything other than temporarily put down a kind of social marker that attitudes need to change. Opposing the change as being an exercise in hypocrisy and "political correctness" may seem justifiable, especially to conservative-minded people, but it can also be perceived as an attack on the need to change behavior and attitudes.

For reference, see The Journey from 'Colored' to 'Minorities' to 'People of Color'.

Yup. Political correctness is the notion that the word somehow makes the issue rather than the issue tainting the word.
 

DrZoidberg

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Because again, removing the words has nothing to do with lessening racism, and everything to do with it's impact on real people in everyday usage. It's the same reason we collectively stopped using the term 'mentally retarded'. I don't think anybody believed the term led to an increase in discrimination, but it does infer and imply a specific belief about the disabled, largely that they're 'not as good' as people without disabilities. We don't change the term to fundamentally change the world, we change it because there are better terms to use, and doing so isn't a big deal.

Similarly, I don't think anyone believes that Twitter changing a few words is going to seriously impact racism, because the point isn't to impact racism at all, it's to use more inclusive language.

You may have a point that there are more fundamental things we can do, but that in itself isn't a good reason not to use more inclusive language. It's an easy step to make, so why not make it.

Now you may disagree with me that these terms are problematic, and that's ok. But you're completely misinterpreting the point of taking this action.

Exactly. You put your finger on it. Instead of retarded we say mentally challenged. But everybody hears retarded when we say mentally challenged. It's a pointless exercise. It's virtue signalling. When you say "n-word" you are saying the word "nigger". It's the same information content. We've just decided one is OK and the other isn't.

This shit is everywhere in modern Western society and its intellectualy dishonest as well as retarding. Its an attempt to hide what we mean in plain sight. Just to confuse. In case the dumbest members of our community are ofended. But it's just a dumb excerise.

Is that true? Everybody? How would we even begin to quantify that? And how do we know that these minor changes won't have major impacts on our social awareness in many decades, even centuries?

And even if the change has absolutely no impact, why not use a better term just because it's a better term?

Unless you are retarded, then yes. The words are synonyms. Some mentally challenged people might not understand what a, synonym is. But for us that do, changing words are not helping anything.

Its as if the Nazi party would have changed the red in their flag to pink because it feels less threatening, but otherwise change nothing. Perhaps require the staff of the gas chambers to smile and say welcome to every jew entering. If we're going to insult people, why not be honest about it?
 

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My black friends like to be referred to as Black, but that could be an age thing. They were. young during the Black Power movement and when James Brown sang, "Say it loud. I'm Black and I'm proud". African American has always seemed silly to me. I don't refer to myself as European American. I'm also not crazy about people of color, since we are all basically people of color, plus when the term is used by very old people, they sometimes slip and say, "colored people". A term hated by most black folks.

Three is no nice word to describe someone with a very low IQ, but mentally retarded does need to go. I say that because when I was a child, there was a little girl who suffered from that condition on my Sunday school bus. The mean kids would make fun of her and call her "Retard". That was so hurtful. Maybe we should just use the word disabled or not use any term to describe people based on their intelligence. Besides there are many aspects of intelligence. And, some people who have Down's syndrome also have pretty. high emotional intelligence if they were raised well, while some so called geniuses lack anything resembling emotional intelligence despite being able to easily solve difficult math problems. I think we need to stop labeling people based on their intellectual skills.
 
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