19
   

A quick story about racism.

 
 
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 02:22 am
So I was in the lab today. I was working on my project. There are three teams that meet in this lab. I am the team leader and I coordinate all efforts for the group, but I don't have any authority with the other two teams.

So we are working and I hear the other group doing some brainstorming. Through all the chaos one statement escaped their group in the noisy room.

I guess we'll have to "Africa-Engineer" it. Everyone laughed and thought nothing of it.

I thought that I was mistaken at first; that I had heard it wrong, but I quickly noticed the expression on on of my teammates. He had heard it too.

Just two days ago, I was posting here with Bi-polar Bear, and we were discussing the presence of racism in the younger generations. Bear seemed to think that the presence was real, but isolated to a more insular less educated group.

These were agroup of 6 Aerospace Engineers... Rocket Scientists. They weren't from small towns. I know these guys, they were all from St. Louis, and most attended nice private highschools.

The discussion that Bear and I had was pompted by Asherman's statement about how in white communities, whites aren't used to hearing language like this. He specifically used the phrase "politically incorrect language."

With the exception of myself, the room was all white.

When this happened, I couldn't help but think how wrong Asherman was. I think the community is too used to hearing this kind of language and it's got to the point where people are just numb to it.

Goodbye "Nigger-rigging"
Hello "Africa-Engineering"

What's next?

The team leader for that team, is a friend of mine. He was not present, I plan to report this to him when I see him tomorrow. I will let him sort out his team.

Thoughts?
K
O
 
snood
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 03:00 am
I'm just glad there's your kind of sensibility somewhere amongst the young genius rocket scientists.
0 Replies
 
snood
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 03:12 am
Lemme share a Ft Leonard Wood story with you, KO - since that's right in your neck of the woods.

During the very first couple of weeks I was there, way back in prehistoric 1990, I called a cab to take me from a business just off post - I think it was a used car dealership I was trying to buy a car from - to the PX area on post.

When the cab arrived, it was a white lady driver probably in her mid to late 30s. She rolled up to the curb I was standing on, rolled down the window and told me, "I'm sorry, you're going to have to call another cab" - she then rolled up the window (she could probably nonetheless hear me saying "What's going on? Why do I have to call another cab?"), and took off. I did call another cab, and go about my business.

But I promptly called some folks in authority and when it got looked into, they told me that the lady had a relative who had been raped by a black man, so she didn't want to serve any black people. I don't know if any disciplinary measure happened, except that the soldiers were told not to patronize that particular cab company. And I was too preoccupied with other things and naive to see if I could press the matter further.

That was one of my first impressions of the Ozarks.

Not as subtle or timely a scenario as yours, but a fun little story anyway.
0 Replies
 
hingehead
 
  2  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 04:19 am
Re: A quick story about racism.
Diest TKO wrote:
and most attended nice private highschools.


Admittedly I'm from another country but I've never thought of private high schools as 'nice'. Their insular selective nature is a breeding ground for narrowmindedness and groupthink. IMO.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 04:49 am
Re: A quick story about racism.
Diest TKO wrote:
So I was in the lab today. I was working on my project. There are three teams that meet in this lab. I am the team leader and I coordinate all efforts for the group, but I don't have any authority with the other two teams.

So we are working and I hear the other group doing some brainstorming. Through all the chaos one statement escaped their group in the noisy room.

I guess we'll have to "Africa-Engineer" it. Everyone laughed and thought nothing of it.

I thought that I was mistaken at first; that I had heard it wrong, but I quickly noticed the expression on on of my teammates. He had heard it too.

Just two days ago, I was posting here with Bi-polar Bear, and we were discussing the presence of racism in the younger generations. Bear seemed to think that the presence was real, but isolated to a more insular less educated group.

These were agroup of 6 Aerospace Engineers... Rocket Scientists. They weren't from small towns. I know these guys, they were all from St. Louis, and most attended nice private highschools.

The discussion that Bear and I had was pompted by Asherman's statement about how in white communities, whites aren't used to hearing language like this. He specifically used the phrase "politically incorrect language."

With the exception of myself, the room was all white.

When this happened, I couldn't help but think how wrong Asherman was. I think the community is too used to hearing this kind of language and it's got to the point where people are just numb to it.

Goodbye "Nigger-rigging"
Hello "Africa-Engineering"

What's next?

The team leader for that team, is a friend of mine. He was not present, I plan to report this to him when I see him tomorrow. I will let him sort out his team.

Thoughts?
K
O


Varying degrees of that sort of thing happen here all the time. Of course, none of us is rocket scientists.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 04:52 am
The only surprise for me here is that anyone would be so naive, or dishonest with oneself, as to believe (let alone say) that there were no racism among the well-educated middle class.
0 Replies
 
Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 05:02 am
Setanta wrote:
The only surprise for me here is that anyone would be so naive, or dishonest with oneself, as to believe (let alone say) that there were no racism among the well-educated middle class.


The important thing is that the person was made aware. The problem with racism (and sexism) is that often it is so finely woven into the fabric of every day living, that often people , (usually the ones who are not the butt of the "ism") don't even perceive it, unless their noses are rubbed in it.
0 Replies
 
Bi-Polar Bear
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 06:15 am
no doubt racism exists everywhere.... and it will NEVER completely go away. It becomes more isolated though with time and it IS less prevalent than it used to be.... or less out in the open in any case which means we are moving forward... we won't see the end of it in my lifetime, my cub's lifetime or probably ever eliminate it completely... but it's a goal to work towards.
0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 06:55 am
I've been troubled by the rise of the word "ghetto" as an adjective.
0 Replies
 
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Jun, 2009 09:48 pm
Why don't people realize that Rush Limbaugh was not deprecating Sotomayor when he called her a racist? He was complimenting her.
0 Replies
 
Chumly
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Jun, 2009 10:01 pm
Well then this is the perfect place for a science-sex-joke:

The frequency is the inverse of the period!

0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  2  
Reply Sat 6 Jun, 2009 10:08 pm
Um.....am I allowed to ask what "Africa-engineer"or "Nigger-rig" Mean?
2PacksAday
 
  3  
Reply Sat 6 Jun, 2009 10:27 pm
@dlowan,
Poor folk tend to rig things...as in not having the money for a proper repair, or just don't want to spend the money...so you rig it...duct tape, bailing wire...etc.

Black folk are/were often poor...hence the name...but I know just as many white folks that do this sort of thing....cause we all poor here honey.

I also rig things when needed, though I tend to use the term...Southern Engineered, cause that keeps me out of trouble...but the term in question is very common here in fuckyoursisterville....screwyourcousin city is just 5 miles down the road.

dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Jun, 2009 11:13 pm
@2PacksAday,
Aaaah!!! There is a fabulous Aboriginal made and starred in film called "Bush Mechanics" having a laugh at this very thing.
2PacksAday
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Jun, 2009 01:25 am
@dlowan,
This thing?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bush_Mechanics

Either way, I'd love to watch it....there was a series here a few years ago...don't think it's still on, but it was called Junk Yard Wars....where they give two teams a day to build a vehicle that will have to perform a certain task out of pure junk...I'm pretty sure the show came from the Brits, or maybe even you guys....cause one of the teams was from England or OZ.

The wiki link I gave said this...."the series followed how they solved multiple car problems with inventive, wacky and unpredictable bush repair techniques".

Note the use of "inventive", this is more how I see this type of thing...but nigga rigged, usually has a negative undertone...or even an overtone. "Billy Bob you fix it right, don't be all nigga riggin it up". More along the lines of half-assed, or Mickey Mouse{d}...if you don't know that one, add wiring to the end and google it. But it doesn't always have to be negative, I've seen many a proud smile after someone noted a nice riggin job....."Did you nigga rig that...Yep, I show did, and she runs better than store bought....huge smile here.

Afro-engineered is the more current form, and to be honest, I kind of think it's cute...at least it's a lot better than the older one, it just doesn't sound so bad....it's damn sure easier on the ears than the alternative....now, I might not think that if I was a black guy, or a member of any other ethnic group....but what do I know, I'm just a white asshole.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Jun, 2009 01:31 am
@2PacksAday,
On the Rez, it's called Injuneering. By Injuns.
0 Replies
 
Diest TKO
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Jun, 2009 02:06 am
@2PacksAday,
2PacksAday wrote:

Afro-engineered is the more current form, and to be honest, I kind of think it's cute...at least it's a lot better than the older one, it just doesn't sound so bad....it's damn sure easier on the ears than the alternative....now, I might not think that if I was a black guy, or a member of any other ethnic group....but what do I know, I'm just a white asshole.

I understand what you're writing, but I'd be lying, if it didn't find it a little disturbing.

T
K
O
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Jun, 2009 03:57 am
@2PacksAday,
Yep...right show:

http://www.bushmechanics.com/home.htm

I don't know if it was making fun of a nasty stereotype or not...but it was very funny!
0 Replies
 
revel
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Jun, 2009 05:24 am
I was wondering when someone was going to talk about how the term is some kind of culture thing and not meant to be racist, next thing you know we are going to read a lot about reverse discrimination and the issue of freedom of speech vs. political correctness...ECT Not denying that any of that is true or not, it is just that it seems no matter the racist subject one of three rationales always gets used.

Recently I heard about a situation and I wondering what anyone else thoughts were. My husband works at a county water office and a few years ago a black man tried to get hired on, he was extremely qualified but he still wasn't hired on. (there are no blacks there) He hired a local lawyer to try and fight it but he didn't succeed, from what I understand the rationale was so pitiful I couldn't believe it succeeded. Because they hire women they were covered over the affirmative action thing. My husband tried to argue in favor of this and I just shook my head in disgust after giving him a head full. I know the situation is different because unlike the author of this thread, my husband's water office is located in a backward somewhat southern town and the work place is a not full of rocket scientist to say the least... But I was wondering; am I wrong, do they actually have it covered? Couldn't he have filed with the ACLU or something?
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Jun, 2009 05:29 am
The problem i see with this "n-rigged" and "afro-engineered" thing is that it is so unnecessary. We already have a locution in the language--jury-rigged--which means exactly the same thing. To use such expressions is a matter of intent, one can express the idea with jury-rigged, or with "kind of Rube Goldberg" and never need descend into invidious comparisons based on racist stereotypes.
 

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