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Words MEAN things, gad dommit!!

OT Language Cultures

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#61 Uncle Sid

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Posted 14 October 2003 - 05:58 AM

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Even the terrorists are called cowards, but lack of courage certainly isn't what's wrong with them!

No, the terrorists are cowards, even more so are their masters.  There are many types of bravery and many types of cowardice.  Their type of cowardice is the fear of being seen as inferior, not the chosen of god.  They fear that they might be wrong, possibly about everything.  Sometimes it's ten times easier to get killed than admit that you could be wrong.  It's even possible to kill others because of that fear.

Everybody has done it at one point or another.  Christians attacked Muslims because they feared losing their lands to them.  Christians and other religions persecute heretics because they fear that the religion will fall apart unless the unbeliever is removed and an example made.  Thses people, these attack dogs, don't understand that if they have to turn violence on those who don't believe, they are negating their own righteousness.  

It takes guts to really accept the possibility that you could be wrong, faith is the ability to accept that and still believe anyway.  The terrorists are cowards because they cannot have faith unless anyone who disagrees with them is purged form the Earth.
I can picture in my mind a world without war, a world without hate. And I can picture us attacking that world, because they'd never expect it. - Jack Handey

#62 Drew

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Posted 14 October 2003 - 09:28 AM

GiGi, on Aug 11 2003, 02:18 AM, said:

FlatlandDan, on Aug 10 2003, 09:39 PM, said:

On a somewhat side note, I had a prof take 10% of a paper because I described a Japanese fountain as oriental.

She said that is was no longer politically correct.
What!

That is ridiculous.
I agree. The prof is forcing your writing to conform to the prof's views. Furthermore, "Oriental" is still considered quite proper when refering to art. I would have pressed the issue. Is there still time?
"Someone must have slandered Josef K., for one morning, without having done anything wrong, he was arrested."

#63 Drew

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Posted 14 October 2003 - 09:33 AM

Delvo, on Aug 11 2003, 09:19 PM, said:

I really like "amerind", which I first encountered in a linguistics class while reading about the history of the "amerinds'" languages, because it's based on an old phrase but changed slightly to correct the built-in "error", and also shortened to make pronouncing it in real use more convenient.
Ew . . . hate that awkward term. I'm glad it never caught on.

Quote

. . . it could be just a hawk, and if you couldn't identify it, then it would still be a UFO!

We actually do that when we're out birding and keeping a list. Something we see but can't identify shows up on our lists as "UFO" or "ULB" (Unidentified Little Bird") or "LBB" ("Little Brown Bird") or something of the sort.  :cool:

Edited by Drew, 14 October 2003 - 09:36 AM.

"Someone must have slandered Josef K., for one morning, without having done anything wrong, he was arrested."

#64 Drew

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Posted 14 October 2003 - 09:37 AM

Rhea, on Aug 22 2003, 10:21 PM, said:

Quote

From the Greek, oxys (sharp, keen) + moros (foolish). Sharply foolish. A combination of contradictory or incongruous words (as in cruel kindness).

Examples:

military intelligence
airline food
peacekeeping force
mandatory option
a little bit pregnant :p :p
jumbo shrimp     :angel:
"Jim Carrey Comedy"  :cool:
"Someone must have slandered Josef K., for one morning, without having done anything wrong, he was arrested."

#65 StarDust

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Posted 14 October 2003 - 11:28 AM

One of my favorites is when people use the words 'explain or  understand' and 'excuse' as if they are the same thing.

We this over and over when discussing criminal behavior, for example, or our enemies.  And both sides do it.  You have the one group that doesn't want to understand why someone did something, because it's like we are excusing it. One of the reasons they feel that way is because the other end of the spectrum thinks that if we understand why someone did something we should feel sorry for them and excuse them, or at least sympathize and virtually excuse them.

They are two different things.

We should always try to understand they 'why's of something. It helps us to grow, to have knowledge, to possibly prevent the same  thing happening again, and maybe even help someone else from going 'bad'.

However, that doesn't excuse someone they go 'bad'. Most likely it's too late for them anyways. And if it isn't, they still have to pay for what they did. There is something seriously wrong with a lot of people and understanding how they got that way doesn't mean it excuses them at all.

And it is always best to 'understand' your enemy. That doesn't mean your are sypathizing or excusing their behavior. But you can't defeat what you don't know.

And the list goes on and on where people think understanding or explaining something is somehow making it okay.  That's not what it means at all.

--

As far as Oriental and Asian, I've been noticing that a lot lately. Oriental applies to those that anthropology referes to as Mongloid/Asioid. People in western Asia are Asian because they live on the Asian Continent. They however are not Oriental. Technically they are Caucasoid with varying skin tones.  People in N.Afica are Caucasoid, not Negroid. But they are still Africans. Egypt went through a phase a while back where they were reminding people they were Africans, not Arabs.  Just like the majority of Russia is in Asia. The middle east is in Asia, India is in Asia. They are not Orientals. Asian refers to a continent, Oriental refers to a race.  Someone can be both or just one or neither.  

It's like the old argument that Canadians and Mexicans are Americans too, even though when people say American they usually mean people in the US. After all what else would you call us, United Statesians?  I think we coined the term American first also, which is why it tends to apply to us. But technically everyone in this hemisphere is an American. I think people settled on using the terms North Americans or South Americans, so as to not be confused with the fact everyone uses the term American to refer to the US. But even then, most people think of N.Americans as US/Canada and S.Americans as Mexico and points south (the anglo culture versus the hispanic-portuguese culture). So it's a moving target.

I think American Indians should be called American Indians. We are all native americans, and they aren't the first Americans. There were many cultures that rose and fell before the current tribes on this continent that bear no semblence to current tribes. Other places people use the term aborigine, but that isn't our tradition and sounds weird. After all the term Indian has been used for over 400 years now. And American Indian rightly identifies them as being American like the rest of us and differentiates them from India Indians. I believe most American Indians would prefer being called what they are,  Navajo, Cherokee, etc. The real problem is trying to lump them all together in one group when they aren't.  The term European only goes so far, tyring to say that the French and the English are the same would probably get you hung from the nearest tree.

The problem is all this terminology comes from the past, when people didn't move as much and ethnic/geographic identies were used almost as though they were a race. Today, it's about where you were born and where you choose to live, which very likely has little to do with your race or your genetic ancestors.  Which is why I don't approve of hyphenated people, but that's another topic.

#66 sierraleone

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Posted 14 October 2003 - 08:54 PM

StarDust, on Oct 14 2003, 08:28 AM, said:

I think American Indians should be called American Indians. We are all native americans, and they aren't the first Americans. There were many cultures that rose and fell before the current tribes on this continent that bear no semblence to current tribes. Other places people use the term aborigine, but that isn't our tradition and sounds weird. After all the term Indian has been used for over 400 years now. And American Indian rightly identifies them as being American like the rest of us and differentiates them from India Indians. I believe most American Indians would prefer being called what they are,  Navajo, Cherokee, etc. The real problem is trying to lump them all together in one group when they aren't.  The term European only goes so far, tyring to say that the French and the English are the same would probably get you hung from the nearest tree.
In regards to Mexico I think of it as part of N. America, or on occasionaly wrongly think of it as part of Central America ;)

In regards to the natives, IIRC, they can also be called First Nations, a term I think they picked out themselves  :unsure: But thats more of a collective term to refere to all the natives all across the Americas. The Inuit are a seperate ethnic/cultural group (they came later than the other native american/First Nations groups), but I think they are including in the terminology. They are only called American Indians because it has become part of the language ;) I know people who object to that and won't say "East Indian" or "India Indians", they say rather just "Indians" because they say thats the proper term :D Damn Columbus ;) American Indians I think see that they'll never be called by their tribal name, whic is why they came up with this First Nations term I believe. But then I'm not sure ;)  :blush:
Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.
- Masha Gessen
Source: http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html

#67 sierraleone

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Posted 14 October 2003 - 08:57 PM

Delvo, on Aug 11 2003, 07:19 AM, said:

Ooh, here's another one. I am a native American. I was born in the USA, I grew up here, I've spent my whole life here except for three weeks of it several years ago. My whole family has always lived here for generations, more of them than we can even track in some cases. And we're white. Our tribes are Germanic, and our homeland is the USA, especially Missouri and Kansas, where almost all of us have lived and died, and wouldn't have had it any other way, feeling no affinity to any place other than where we are really from. So don't tell us we're not native Americans.

And Canada's "first nations" people didn't have nations, and to call those peoples who were there when Canada was first explored and established as a country by white people, and/or the ones who are there now, the "first" ones to be there is a major simplification of their history that not only is inaccurate but would be seen as an insult if differnet people had pushed the same notion.

Gotta come up with examples that don't have to do with race... I know there are plenty, since I keep seeing things that make me think of this topic, but it's hard to come up with examples on the spot...
Oh, I didn't know this had already been talked about :eh: I read this thread a long time ago, and only read the new posts when I looked at it today.
Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.
- Masha Gessen
Source: http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html

#68 QueenTiye

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Posted 15 October 2003 - 11:24 AM

Uncle Sid, on Oct 14 2003, 06:58 AM, said:

Everybody has done it at one point or another.  Christians attacked Muslims because they feared losing their lands to them.  Christians and other religions persecute heretics because they fear that the religion will fall apart unless the unbeliever is removed and an example made.  Thses people, these attack dogs, don't understand that if they have to turn violence on those who don't believe, they are negating their own righteousness. 

It takes guts to really accept the possibility that you could be wrong, faith is the ability to accept that and still believe anyway.  The terrorists are cowards because they cannot have faith unless anyone who disagrees with them is purged form the Earth.
While I certainly agree with the sentiment here - especially the part about having the courage to admit one is wrong - in a thread about word usage, I'll have to take exception to the use of the word "everybody" in the context of the rest of your paragraph... ;)

QT

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