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Old 11-23-2006, 12:17 AM   #21
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Default Re: Kramer (Michael Richards)

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Originally Posted by X-Terminator View Post
Here's one black fan, and I have to say that your perspective is different from many of those I've heard. My personal feelings on race are along the lines of Bill Cosby, but very few of us actually speak up about it because we have a tendency to be shouted down and ostracised for daring to have a different viewpoint. Black racism is the "dirty little secret" in America - it is very deeply ingrained in a lot of our society and many of them are pretty open about it. In fact, the worst racism I have ever experienced or seen has come from other blacks - some of them in my own family. There's no question that we've made a TON of progress in race relations over the years, but I can see some regressing in the future if nothing is done about the clear double-standard that exists when it comes to racism (this incident is a prime example of that double-standard, IMO), and start cleaning up our own back yard, so to speak. Some may argue that some of that "regression" has already begun given some of the responses I've seen on other message boards on this subject.
Xterm... WHile I am white, your comments resonate with my experience pastoring a black church. What gets me the most, is the fact that since the previous pastor (who was black), would not "get into bed" politically with the other pastors... the other pastors (all black as well) turned on him and started rumors in the community that the church was dealing drugs, and that was the only way the church was attracting young people.

From what I saw, the biggest oppression in the community was from the community itself. If someone chose to rise above the crowd, they were beat (literally, children would be beat up for getting A's or B's in school, and told they weren't being black anymore). This is just one example of what I saw. It completely saddened me.

This is not to say that I beleive racism doesn't exist, nor that the people in this community didn't deal with racism towards them. This is just one more issue added on to the problem.
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Old 11-23-2006, 10:44 AM   #22
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Default Re: Kramer (Michael Richards)

Man, thanks to everyone who is speaking up. I really appreciate the insight.


Tom
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Old 11-23-2006, 12:03 PM   #23
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Default Re: Kramer (Michael Richards)

Giddyup
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Old 11-23-2006, 01:36 PM   #24
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Default Re: Kramer (Michael Richards)

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Man, thanks to everyone who is speaking up. I really appreciate the insight.


Tom
Agreed... I think that this is one of the best threads that I've read on the forum. It think that there is hope since a good discussion can come out of such a stupid event. I also agree that Richards should be done with standup. If he was good, he would have been able to integrate what the hecklers were calling him into his act. A good standup should be able to handle heckling.
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Old 11-23-2006, 03:44 PM   #25
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Default Re: Kramer (Michael Richards)

Well everyone is guilty of prejudicial behaviour, that includes sexism and racism, to some degree.

These prejudices are wholly dependent on the environment you spend your time , at home, with friends and at work - and in some cases a negative personal experience.

There is a pretty overt racist atmosphere over here in the UK, mostly of the anti-Muslim and anti-eastern european nature.

The former are a bunch of raghead terrorist suicide bombers and the latter are undercutting us for labouring jobs and putting us out of work.

Alot of people believe these statements to be fact, and if you look hard enough you can find enough examples of both to confirm their supposed veracity.

Personally speaking, the racism I come across is mainly anti-Asian - ie Pakistani, Bengali and Indian - these people get grouped under the one heading - 'Paki's' - which tells you enough about the ignorance of the people concerned.

I am surrounded by overtly racist attitudes pretty much every day, most of my workmates hold strong anti-Muslim views and some of my friends do too.

Unfortunately so do my parents, the irony being that they are Irish immigrants themselves and it would have not been uncommon for them to see signs in cafe's when they first emmigrated saying 'No Dogs or Irish Allowed'.

Instead of this making the Irish more sympathetic to the plight of the latest immigrants from Asia it makes them even more eager to assimilate themselves with the rest of the population - just glad that they are not the focal point for the hostility anymore.

And I guess thats what alot of it comes down to, ignorance based on stereotypes perpetuated by people who want to be part of the 'big gang' - some things dont change even after we leave school.

I dont mind admiting that when I was younger I made childish, ignorant statements mainly based upon a need to 'fit in' - it takes each person a different amount of time to work things out for themselves - some people never get there.

NM
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Old 11-23-2006, 04:09 PM   #26
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Default Re: Kramer (Michael Richards)

There's just no way to spin it, unlike Mel Gibson's drunken chat with the cops. Richards just went OFF, calmed down, then went off again with repeated uses of the n-word. This has to be a career-killer for him (not like it was going well anyway).

Hecklers are a fact of life for standup comedians and you just gotta learn the appropriate comebacks, like this one:

'Hey, I don't come down to where you work & knock the burgers off the grill.'

If they continue, ratchet it up:

'Hey, I don't come down to where you work & knock the dicks out of your mouth.'
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Old 11-23-2006, 04:15 PM   #27
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Default Re: Kramer (Michael Richards)

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Personally speaking, the racism I come across is mainly anti-Asian - ie Pakistani, Bengali and Indian - these people get grouped under the one heading - 'Paki's' - which tells you enough about the ignorance of the people concerned.

NM
anti- bengali sentiment is prevalent on this board too.

the bengalis suck

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Old 11-23-2006, 07:58 PM   #28
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Default Re: Kramer (Michael Richards)

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It's OK Preacher, I don't mind having the discussion in the open, because when I write something like that I'm usually BEGGING for a followup; I'll write it to help promote some thinking, sometimes to help me focus my thoughts and sometimes to provoke others to examine theirs.

What I mean when I say "racist" isn't hate; I don't hate blacks. What I mean is the way white people especially of my age (and Gibson's and Richards', I'm 52, Gibson is 50, Richards is 57) view the issue of race. It is seeing "race of man" as more important and defining than "man". If you were brought up that way (and blacks of our age were brought up that way as well; EVERYONE was), that worldview is almost impossible to change. It was imprinted on you through subtle signs, culturally. And it is what allows you to use race as an insult. You wouldn't think to use hair color as a hateful insult; blonde jokes notwithstanding, you don't categorize people according to hair color.

The modern issue of race in this country is irrevocably tied to slavery and cultural domination, and that is what gives it its onesidedness; it's why the audience can yell "cracker" but Richards can't yell back "******". In a larger sense "cracker" has no meaning as an insult to someone who is in a superior position socially... and if you don't agree that that particular social stratification is real, I refer you to Chris Rock's routine where he tells the white audience that none of them would trade places with him, and he's RICH. "Naw, I think I'll stick with this white thing a while, see where it takes me." But "******" carries the weight of oppression, slavery, and inhumanity in the sense of people as chattel.

So as a late-middle aged white male, what can I do? The first thing I can do is not congratulate myself for conquering racism; that misunderstands the word. The fact that I treat people of all races equally in the way I conduct my life is not the same as having changed a life-view that was imprinted on me from birth. It does allow others the dignity and respect that they deserve as fellow humans, but it does not change the fact that I am aware of doing it.

In order to kill my own racism, which I did not have a say in acquiring so I can't have any shame in admitting, I can only recognize it for what it is, conquer its appearances in my everyday life, and not pass it on to my children. If you are younger, then it is likely that your cultural influences are less pervasive than they were for me and my generation, and that your parents have already watered down their poison; and you in turn will do what you can to dilute it for your children. We can only hope so.



Tom
That is a powerful post... well said.

I'm five years younger than you, and raising two daughters, ages 13 and 10. I have done as you say, and try not to pass on what I grew up with, and what is ingrained in me toward minorities. I don't hate anyone, and I treat everyone with respect, but you are right... you cannot just turn off the "racism" that has been forged in you from your cultural surroundings, no matter how much you wish you could.

I wonder how many generations it will take before this is no longer true. Personally, I don't believe mankind is capable of ridding itself of racism, altogether.

Last edited by silver & black; 11-23-2006 at 08:16 PM.
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Old 11-23-2006, 08:19 PM   #29
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Default Re: Kramer (Michael Richards)

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Originally Posted by Mosca View Post
It's OK Preacher, I don't mind having the discussion in the open, because when I write something like that I'm usually BEGGING for a followup; I'll write it to help promote some thinking, sometimes to help me focus my thoughts and sometimes to provoke others to examine theirs.

What I mean when I say "racist" isn't hate; I don't hate blacks. What I mean is the way white people especially of my age (and Gibson's and Richards', I'm 52, Gibson is 50, Richards is 57) view the issue of race. It is seeing "race of man" as more important and defining than "man". If you were brought up that way (and blacks of our age were brought up that way as well; EVERYONE was), that worldview is almost impossible to change. It was imprinted on you through subtle signs, culturally. And it is what allows you to use race as an insult. You wouldn't think to use hair color as a hateful insult; blonde jokes notwithstanding, you don't categorize people according to hair color.

The modern issue of race in this country is irrevocably tied to slavery and cultural domination, and that is what gives it its onesidedness; it's why the audience can yell "cracker" but Richards can't yell back "******". In a larger sense "cracker" has no meaning as an insult to someone who is in a superior position socially... and if you don't agree that that particular social stratification is real, I refer you to Chris Rock's routine where he tells the white audience that none of them would trade places with him, and he's RICH. "Naw, I think I'll stick with this white thing a while, see where it takes me." But "******" carries the weight of oppression, slavery, and inhumanity in the sense of people as chattel.

So as a late-middle aged white male, what can I do? The first thing I can do is not congratulate myself for conquering racism; that misunderstands the word. The fact that I treat people of all races equally in the way I conduct my life is not the same as having changed a life-view that was imprinted on me from birth. It does allow others the dignity and respect that they deserve as fellow humans, but it does not change the fact that I am aware of doing it.

In order to kill my own racism, which I did not have a say in acquiring so I can't have any shame in admitting, I can only recognize it for what it is, conquer its appearances in my everyday life, and not pass it on to my children. If you are younger, then it is likely that your cultural influences are less pervasive than they were for me and my generation, and that your parents have already watered down their poison; and you in turn will do what you can to dilute it for your children. We can only hope so.



Tom
That is a powerful post... well said.

I'm five years younger than you, and raising two daughters, ages 13 and 10. I have done as you say, and try not to pass on what I grew up with, and what is engrained in me toward minorities. I don't hate anyone, and I treat everyone with respect, but you are right... you cannot just turn off the "racism" that has been forged in you from your cultural surroundings, no matter how much you wish you could.

I wonder how many generations it will take before this is no longer true. Personally, I don't believe mankind is capable of ridding itself of racism, altogether.
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Old 11-23-2006, 10:07 PM   #30
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Default Re: Kramer (Michael Richards)

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anti- bengali sentiment is prevalent on this board too.

the bengalis suck


You're a Bengal!!!!! You're a Bengal!!!!!!! You're a Bengal!!!!!!!! You're a Bengal!!!!!!!!!
You're a Bengal!!!!!!!


Does that shock you?!?!?! A White man called someone a Bengal! ooooohhhh

50 years ago you would have been a Brown!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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