Re: racism pollutes the extropian list

Michael S. Lorrey (
Fri, 04 Jun 1999 11:08:46 -0400

dwayne wrote:

> "Michael S. Lorrey" wrote:
> >
> > Now who is knee jerking? The context that I used the word, with no knowledge of the
> > particular political correctness of the word in a region on the opposite side of the
> > planet from me, was merely as a means of abbreviating.
> Sure. But once you have been told it has racist connotations, why bring
> it up again? Why not just let it lie?

We were having a discusion about knee-jerk responses to use of words taken out of context. My point has been that there are so many different historical contexts that for a person to jump to such conclusions is rude and insulting in and of itself. We could have just let it lie at that, but you seem to prefer to continue the rudeness.

> > Its also quite convenient for you to ignore my italian ancestry.
> What?
> Sorry, last time I checked, Italians were caucasian.

Only in a general sense. Most bigoted types who are northern european descendants do not beleive so, especially italians of sicilian descent, who are considered by bigots of northern extraction to be not much different from blacks. If I were as knee jerk and over-sensitive as you I'd consider your ignorance of this fact to be rather bigoted of you.

> > Even today in many parts of the US, when people
> > find out you are italian and from the east coast, they automatically think you are in
> > the mafia. When my grandfather married an italian girl in the 1930's, his family
> > would not talk to him for years, prejudice was so widespread back then. To most
> > WASPs, being white means being of NORTHERN european descent, and specifically of
> > English descent. Anyone who is not ignorant of history knows what the English did to
> > the Scots after Culloden. Apparently you are.
> Oh get a grip, will you? Who is talking about WASPS? As I said to you,
> if you were to use such a word to a group of aborigines over here, they
> will be offended. The fact that you are *italian* will not calm them
> down much at all. All they will see is yet another offensive white dude
> having a go at them. Shit, that's all I see reading this email.

Which is, as I said, total knee jerking and being totally ignorant of other historical contexts.

> And I'll wager I have a FAR greater understanding of history than you
> do.

>From what I've seen so far, not bloody likely.

> > I was talking with some freinds the other day about this, and we were mocking the
> > demands of a few years ago for apologies to the african americans. At the same time
> > their ancestors were getting enslaved by the British, my Scottish ancestors were
> > getting exterminated by the British. Why the hell should I, or my representatives,
> > have to apologize to them?
> This is SUCH complete bullshit. The Scots weren't locked up in chains
> and carted off to the other side of the planet. To even attempt to
> compare what happened to the scots to what happened to negroes is so
> obviously fatuous as to render me, um, speechless.

On the contrary, my scottish ancestors were locked up and carted off to the Hebrides and to Nova Scotia, and their land was seized so that English lords could make more profits off of the breeding of sheep. All commoner women were subject to the English policy of Primogeniture, which meant that the king, the local lord, or his agent had the right to have intercourse with any newly married woman before the husband could consummate the marriage. This was the enactment of old Longshanks' complaint that "The problem with Scotland is that its full of Scots."

I think this is an ample example of how little you understand history.

> > None of my ancestors even came to the US until after the
> > civil war. One of my buddies noted that his danish ancestors were held under martial
> > law by the Swedes way back when, so I summarily apologized to him for the actions of
> > my Swedish ancestors on his Danish ancestors.
> Can I just quickly interject into the midst of this foam and ask you:
> what the hell has this to do with you not calling aborigines "abos"?

I could counter by saying that what does my use of the term, even though I've never been anywhere near Austrialia or known an Aborigine, have anything to do with how pissed the Aborigines may be at the way Aussies have treated them?

> > Now I suppose if you REALLY stretch it, I would have to apologize for my Roman Empire
> > ancestors and what they did to the Carthaginians, the Egyptians, the Jews, the
> > French, and the British. Let me say right here: I am truly sorry people I never met
> > or gained an ounce of benefit from opressed people you never met or gained an ounce
> > of benefit from. Happy now?
> Without getting too far into personal flames, you are a fucking twit.

Since this isn't the first time you've descended to personal flames, insults, and general bad language, you're already a bit far into it.

> Where did I say you should feel responsible for ANYTHING other than your
> own actions? Why did this come into it? I mentioned that the word "abo"
> is considered rude here. You come back, as usual, with something
> totally unrelated to what I wrote. Are you incapable of addressing the
> issues people raise with you, too stupid to understand the difference,
> or too devious to care?

I addressed the topic, and you still felt like coming back with a rude threat as to how some Queensland natives would treat me. The only one being rude here is you.

> Do you have any idea how many people killfile you, Michael? Is it a
> lot? You are the only person on this list I have considered doing it to,
> and one of the rare people on the net to bring me to such a conclusion.
> Congratulations.

The only people who may killfile me are people I probably wouldn't care to converse with much anyways, or are people who are just to busy to deal with the obnoxious individuals I take it upon myself to deal with.

> I haven't done so as yet because you *appear* to have a brain, but this
> complete inability to stick to the point is too annoying for words.

At this point, I'm wondering what YOUR point is. You seem to have lost it.

Mike Lorrey