View Full Version : Niggers and Wogs

23rd Jan 2013, 13:28
Censorship row as BBC cuts racist lines from classic Fawlty Towers episode | Mail Online (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2266738/Censorship-row-BBC-cuts-racist-lines-classic-Fawlty-Towers-episode.html)

Load Toad
23rd Jan 2013, 13:35
Don't put words behind bars.


23rd Jan 2013, 13:38
Tuesday lunchtime Radio 4 news had a classic about Merckel and Hollande addressing the Reichstag to celebrate some anniversary - 50 years of EU or something. Somebody should have picked that up............

BBC seems good at messing things up these days....

23rd Jan 2013, 13:40
Whilst words/expressions and even ways of being come and go from societal fashion, my viewpoint is, if it was in the original, then it needs to be left IN as it belongs. You can't rewrite history after all :rolleyes::p

There are other sitcoms that you never see on re-run channels or otherwise as their general material is just too out of kilter with today's accepted way of being, but that is as it should be.


23rd Jan 2013, 13:47
There are other sitcoms that you never see on re-run channels or otherwise as their general material is just too out of kilter with today's accepted way of being, but that is as it should be.

you're talking about 'Terry and June' huh !

23rd Jan 2013, 13:51
I look forward to the PC re-write of "Uncle Tom's Cabin". :ugh:

23rd Jan 2013, 13:52
Early in the 20th century, the Atlanta Constitution newspaper ran a whole series of plantation legends, which were gathered together and added to by Joel Chandler Harris as 'Uncle Remus'. A very interesting book, but probably too non-PC to be allowed today, although the introduction says the book is intended to preserve the folk lore.

It's not always easy to read, being in the vernacular.

'Heyo, Brer Tarrypin, whar you bin dis long-come-short?' sez Brer Fox, sezee.

But do the PC brigade approve of the preservation of folk lore referring to subjects that they don't like - in this case, slavery?

23rd Jan 2013, 13:55
Or even It ain't half hot mum.......

Windsor Davies, Don Estelle etc funny as a [email protected] funny thin, Lah de dah Gunner Graham :D:D:D

23rd Jan 2013, 14:01

The kids of today wouldn't believe you . . .

23rd Jan 2013, 14:06
Prejudice, in terms of actively discriminating against any group for invalid reasons, is wrong. I think JC sought to point this out by inventing characters who were prejudiced, and ridiculing them for this characteristic. He, and many other writers, did not make their characters wholly ridiculous, as this would be unreal, and also offers the character no hope of redemption.

The PC brigade choose to see this as a character with good points who is racist, and thus promoting racism.

The PC brigade are, in my experience, a group of billy no-mates who wish to insist everybody likes them. Since they can't do this overtly, they seek to attack anyone who dislikes anybody, which necessarily means you won't be allowed to dislike them. Additionally, almost all difficult activities or those involving judgement are taboo, since they could lead to failure and a valid reason for disliking anyone (them).

And they want your money to implement this all with.

23rd Jan 2013, 14:07
The Black & White Minstrel Show - YouTube

23rd Jan 2013, 14:08
G-CPTN, the two books I absolutely HAD to read to my girls at bedtime were Little Black Sambo and Peter Rabbit. Anything else was a bonus, but these were obligatory.

LBS still seems to be available through the big-rain-forest website.

23rd Jan 2013, 14:19
Harry hates everyone:

Dirty Harry Hates Everyone - YouTube

23rd Jan 2013, 14:24
Not forgetting Alf and the Coons.

23rd Jan 2013, 14:28
rotornut started this thread, entitling it "Niggers and Wogs" and linking to a Daily Mail article which contained no mention of either "niggers" or "wogs"... :confused:

To be quite frank, I don't recall any Fawlty Towers episode where a character was called a nigger or a wog. Certainly, there were numerous slurs concerning Manuel. And much humour made at the expense of the Germans.

So why entitle the thread as "Niggers and Wogs"?! I remember watching "Love Thy Neighbour" back in the '70s (not a BBC program), it was British comedy at its' best and reflecting life as it was back then. Admittedly, anyone with a darker-skin shade would have to also be pretty thick-skinned to appreciate it all.

I don't at all agree that the BBC or others attempt to reproduce / adapt / or otherwise censor the original programs for a wider audience today. They're anyway only doing so for commercial purposes. Our TV licence fee paid for those programs to be made, they should be preserved in their original form. If the BBC or others trully wish to make progress, then let them reinvent or otherwise produce new versions of Fawlty Towers and other older "hits" today... :mad:

PS. One presumes that the BBC have already removed all DVD and VHS products connected with Sir Jimmy Savile, hitherto available on their website, until they're suitably doctored etc. :rolleyes:

23rd Jan 2013, 14:37
There was a Fawlty Towers scene where the old Major refers to Niggers and Wogs in the context of a cricket match. I forget exactly how it goes but something along the lines of : "Indians, no no, they're not niggers, they're wogs ..."

I suspect that this is what the PC brigade have jumped on. Sad, pathetic pointless destruction of part of the heritage of British humour.

23rd Jan 2013, 14:38
I don't recall any Fawlty Towers episode where a character was called a nigger or a wog.
The major tells Fawlty about the time he took a woman to see India play cricket at the Oval. He then says: ‘The strange thing was, throughout the morning she kept referring to the Indians as niggers. “No, no, no,” I said, “the niggers are the West Indians. These people are wogs”.’
. . . . . . . .. .

23rd Jan 2013, 14:44
Some of the Blacks in the USA object to this series that I grew up watching. The program started on Radio...done by White Performers than morphed into Black Actors doing the series on TV.

I grew up in the Segregated South...but raised by my Parents to see "Negroes" or "Colored's" as they were called in those days....to be no different than anyone else.

When watching this program on TV...one I really enjoyed and looked forward to each time it was on....it was all about the comedy and not about skin color or anything like that.

As I am not of color....perhaps I just do not have the life experience that would cause me to see anything offensive so I cannot pass judgement on those that do. I do hate they cannot enjoy the humor the program brought into my home and life as I do.

I do find White folks doing Black Face to be offensive....as I consider it an insult to people of color.

Amos and Andy was a great comedy....ranked right up there with Red Skelton, Milton Berle and Jack Benny.

Take a minute or two and listen to Kingfish explain nuclear energy to Andy....you would swear it was Joe Biden holding forth on most any topic.

Amos and Andy #41 The Antique Shop - YouTube

23rd Jan 2013, 15:34
airship - The accomplished actor Rudolph Walker, currently on East Enders, who played the black neighbour in 'Love Thy Neighbour' is on record as saying that he thinks it a shame that the series doesnt get any repeats in the UK, as he thinks there is nothing offensive to black people in it. In the show, he gives as good as he gets (I learned the word 'honkey' watching the programme!)

Loose rivets
23rd Jan 2013, 16:32
The best footballer in our secondary school was simply called, Nigger.

Since he almost always had the ball at his feet, often at ninety miles an hour, the air was filled with calls addressed specifically at him.

He was probably 50/50 black and white.

The thing is, when we hollered at him, it was done in a way that was as normal as, Chalky, or Tiny . . . not a hint of malice. Just spend some time in Southern US states and see why you don't used that word here.

From a young age, the kids of mindless rednecks learn how to say it while spitting poison, so the concept of the word being acceptable to ordinary folk is totally lost.

Cartoons: I've often wondered why the best Tom and Jerry cartoons are no longer aired. Could it be that the legs of the housekeeper were often shown?

A subservient position in the household by default.

23rd Jan 2013, 17:29
As far as TV shows go - Sanford and Son was not adverse to using the term:

1:55 / 4:10 / 7:50 (Twice)


Twas a great laugh...

"Oh God Esther...it's the big one!"

23rd Jan 2013, 17:31
Thanks to the mods for allowing the thread to continue.

Anyway, here's another example of PC gone too far and, believe it or not, it's related to aviation:

Dambusters dog to be renamed Digger for remake of iconic film | Mail Online (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2002027/Dambusters-dog-renamed-Digger-remake-iconic-film.html)

Mac the Knife
23rd Jan 2013, 19:16
History is......history.

Revisionist attempts at Bowdlerising old radio and TV shows, not to mention films and books is dishonest and distorts history.

That the West has become so hypersensitive to causing anyone anywhere offence, and thereby attempting to rewrite it's past, is a reflection of the Western world's increasing loss of faith in itself and the dynamics that led to it's evolution.

We have become apologists for the small, while losing sight of great achievements that we have a right and duty to be proud of.

Airbrushing Churchill's cigar out of photographs is a piece of historical hocus-pocus that does nobody any good.

Trying to retrospectively censor the words and attitudes of more robust times to fit our own pusillanimous days is "politically correct" chicanery at it's worst.

History is what history was, for better or for worse.

We have a responsibility to preserve it and be honest about it rather than lie and censor it.



23rd Jan 2013, 20:09
D2 was in a mixed sporting team which elected a black (that's his colour, I've no idea what his ethnic mix is) captain whose name is Sam. They wanted to call themselves the Little Black Sambos, but when Sam submitted the name, he was told it was offensive.

Interestingly, at her school the students elected an aboriginal school captain. In both cases the choices were based on merit, not tokenism.

23rd Jan 2013, 20:12
Ha ha, Ive been censored !

23rd Jan 2013, 20:30
Guy Gibson calling his dog, Nigger, was probably ok at that time.

Next to socialists and commies I hate PC nazis.

Unfortunately for these PC morons his dog's name was Nigger and is a matter
of permanent history - and there's nothing these backward twits can do about

What about Pulp Fiction? Or do these PC dickbrains regard it as ok for Samuel
Jackson, being black, to call another black "nigger"? Quentin Tarantino (white
trash) says "nigger" a lot - why haven't they jumped on that?

As for Fawlty T I already have the original uncensored DVD collection of all 12
episodes, as well as Pulp Fiction. The PC brigade can go f**k themselves.

23rd Jan 2013, 21:02
The PC brigade can go f**k themselves.

'trouble is - they won't.

Any volunteers ?

I remember a cartoon drawn by my RAF course comedian, in the mid '50s, sadly I can't recall the topic, but clearly remember a boot superimposed over Dover, and the comment "... wogs begin at Dover".

23rd Jan 2013, 21:36
And then there was Alf Garnet, cannot remember the show.

23rd Jan 2013, 21:47
I have the entire 'Fawlty Towers' on video, not near enough episodes if you want my opinion.

But anyway, nothing has been edited from the original showings, the words are still there.

I've watched them enough times that I damn near know the dialog by heart, still watch them from time to time. Greatest TV sitcom ever made.

23rd Jan 2013, 21:54
I'm uncomfortable with the title of this thread. I don't like it.

The racial discussion I welcome, but this is incendiary, and does no good.

23rd Jan 2013, 22:03
Ok Ben, will delete my posts, for the sake of the better good:)

23rd Jan 2013, 22:07
I'm uncomfortable with the title of this thread. I don't like it.

I was taught nealry from the time I was born, that the first word in the title of this thread was never to be utter, on pain of death by my father*. I never heard the second word** until I moved to England and at first had no clue as to what it referred to.

* I was pretty sure he was not serious, but I decided not to test him on it. :uhoh:

** It was one of those neat new British swear words I learned, that mother was unaware of. Had fun using them untill she found out what they meant. I was forced to eat Brussels sprouts for a week. :\

23rd Jan 2013, 22:33
airship - The accomplished actor Rudolph Walker, currently on East Enders, who played the black neighbour in 'Love Thy Neighbour' is on record as saying that he thinks it a shame that the series doesnt get any repeats in the UK, as he thinks there is nothing offensive to black people in it. In the show, he gives as good as he gets (I learned the word 'honkey' watching the programme!)

I watched that programme as a youngster and saw that the nice coloured folks next door were always getting the better of, and taking the mickey out of an ignorant, out of touch, white bigot.

He deserved all he got and I thought it was made clear that was how it was intended. I actually assumed it was written by a coloured person as a lesson to us all and was screened as such. Then a fuss was made by folk claiming it was meant to inflame racial hatred against non-whites.

But then, the world is full of sad people who can never be happy unless they can claim to be outraged.

23rd Jan 2013, 22:35
My favourite Sandford And Son bit was when Arnold Schwarzenegger was to appear on the show.

Sandford.."An' Arnold Schwarzenblack will be there...'
Dummy...."Pop, his name is Schwarzenegger."
Sandford.."Not on this show it ain't."

cockney steve
23rd Jan 2013, 23:15
Well, time for me to get on the outrage-bus and cop me a load of that "high dudgeon"that's about.

All these years, I've been missing out on feeling hurt and victimised and picked-upon as a minority.

WHY? you ask.
Since 1975, I've lived here in the same house in the Northwest . Friends I've known for 30 years, STILL call me "Cockney " git/twerp/wan*er and other insults, TO MY FACE!!!!

I've even tried telling them that i've never even heard the mandatory Bow Bells.
I'll start worrying when they stop having a bit of banter about my origins.

And, yes, I still use the broad, brushstroke (now considered rascist) epithets to describe any particular ethnic group.-stereotyping. maybe, but everyone can immediately grasp the verbal shorthand.....

"him what came up from dahn sarf " doesn't quite match "Cockney", just as" Indian-Asian " is not "Paki."

Some folks just want to take offence where there is none...they really do have problems.(chips on both shoulders? )

23rd Jan 2013, 23:25
Cher - Gypsys Tramps And Thieves - YouTube

I guess folks should never be too precious! ;)


24th Jan 2013, 00:36
And then there was Alf Garnet, cannot remember the show.

Till Death Us do Part.

Loved it! :ok:


24th Jan 2013, 00:56
Brilliant stuff Slash! ;)

My favourite episode from all that brilliance...

In Sickness & In Health - Alf argues with spike milligan - YouTube


24th Jan 2013, 01:04

24th Jan 2013, 04:57
.....until I moved to England and at first had no clue as to what it referred to

Wily Oriental Gentlemen.

Surely that's a compliment to them, isn't it ?

Wily - Smart, Clever, albeit maybe misguided in application

Oriental - Sophisticated description of someone from that region

Gentlemen - An honour to be so described.

Flap 5
24th Jan 2013, 06:40
I am sure you are taking the p*ss ExSp33db1rd. It actually stood for Workers On Government Service and was on the back of the overalls worn by dock workers in Suez back in the 50's. When you look at the real origin of the word it is not so bad. However it may have been used in a dorogatory way at the time.

When I was a kid many words were used as a joke. They weren't intended to be nasty, just used in a way that other words are used today, as friendly banter. However I am sure some would have found them hurtful. I am sure in the future many words that are perfectly acceptable today will be found to be bad to use. Ginger? Fat? Whatever?

24th Jan 2013, 06:56
At the risk of stating the obvious, oo'tube doesn't seem to have collapsed under the protests - for all the world to see at 5.45

24th Jan 2013, 07:37
Apocryphal story from the Falklands following the war:

British squaddies took to referring to the islanders as "Bennies", Benny being a character from a contemporaneous British TV soap opera who was thick apparently. Word went around, the islanders noticed and offence was taken.

A Daily Order was promulgated to the troops, "The practice of referring to the islanders as "Bennies" must cease immediately". And so it did. Gradually officers started to notice that the squaddies were now calling the islanders "stills". When some were asked why, the answer that came was "They're still Bennies, sir!"

24th Jan 2013, 07:41
..... and after 'Stills' was banned, an islander was referred to as an 'Andy'. Asked for an explanation, a squaddy replied : "And 'e's still a Benny."

24th Jan 2013, 07:45
Wily Oriental Gentlemen.

There was me thinking it had something to do with the gollywog on the Robinson's Marmalade jar.

24th Jan 2013, 07:50
It actually stood for Workers On Government Service and was on the back of the overalls worn by dock workers in Suez back in the 50's.
In his book "Horrie the Wog Dog", Ion Idriess cites it, in WW I at least, as deriving from Worthy Oriental Gentleman.

24th Jan 2013, 09:06
I am very much an ethnic minority in my current location. It is refreshing that we can joke about it with friends. When they tell me that I am white I tell them that they are black and then the whole conversation degenerates into mutual racial abuse. Get a life UK.

Currently in the famous Riley's Hotel. I can only see one other whitey and I am married to her :cool:

24th Jan 2013, 09:50
I have never understood why the Black & White Minstrel show was racist. What is racist about white singers pretending to be black singers? I also wouldn't mind seeing "It ain't half hot again", once again deemed to be racist because a white person was pretending to be of another race.

24th Jan 2013, 10:47
Before "Neighbours" we had "Kingswood Country", shame we didn't export that one back to the empire's HQ.

24th Jan 2013, 10:52
I was amazed that the Beeb recently showed the Astaire/Rogers "Swing Time" including Fred dancing the Mister Bo' Jangles sequence all blacked up and frankly only offensive to PC twats and Dianne Abbott

24th Jan 2013, 13:47
I'm uncomfortable with the title of this thread. I don't like it.
OK, I apologise. Let's call it African Americans and South Asians.

Flap 5
24th Jan 2013, 14:56
In his book "Horrie the Wog Dog", Ion Idriess cites it, in WW I at least, as deriving from Worthy Oriental Gentleman.

That may be so but the Suez crisis was in the 50's and immigration started in earnest in the 50's and 60's. The army soldiers returning from Egypt were familiar with the term from the word on dockhand overalls at that time. That would have been the most likely source of the term at that time.

24th Jan 2013, 15:13
OK, I apologise. Let's call it African Americans and South Asians. As the thread starter, have you tried to edit the title yet? Whatever, wouldn't have had the same "punch" as the original undoubtedly. :suspect:

Aged 52, I've obviously survived every non-lethal jibe or whatever else you might wish to call these things to date, whether or not it might have mattered then in the distant past or still matters afterwards, perhaps to this day. I believe that I've experienced some of the very best and worst from most examples of human-kind.

Just because 90% (or just 10%) have engaged in cheap, yet sometimes harmful name-calling during their lives, should not prevent the remaining 10% (or 90%) from continuing to enjoy uncensored comedy shows. And that's my last word on this thread. :ok:

24th Jan 2013, 15:59
Suez back in the 50's

Flap, "the 50's" are not so long ago, so if the "Worker On Government Service" label-legend is true, there must be many photographs of such workers so clad. Can anyone produce one? I'd like to see it.

I lived through and long before the 50's, and the label WOG was current long before my time, used in military circles in speaking of, and sometimes even to, "WOGS". For my own part, I thought that last rather rude, but I may have used the word myself in private. I did not learn of your etymology until I read your post.

Even if you can, which I doubt, produce a photograph of dockyard WOGS, it would prove no more than the existence of a photograph, but not the derivation of the label. Whether the name or the label came first would still be an open question, much like the chicken and the egg. It was certainly contemptuous.

For example, and I am open to correction on this, it was in 1956 widely believed in the UK services that Canberras based in Cyprus made night raids on Suez. The W***, as reported, flew no fighter opposition. That was because their pilots did not like flying at night and thought the Brits fearfully unsporting to attack then. I was in the services at the time and I believed it. Was I wrong? I suppose it is unfair to ask for any disproof?

I expect the ground-grippers would be those dockyard maties with the fancy overalls?

24th Jan 2013, 16:05
I think you will find the term in pre-war Biggles books.

24th Jan 2013, 16:20
Oh radeng! Surely not! From such sensitive souls as Biggles and Algy, though Ginger would be too young? Come to think of it though, I can even offer wording: "Biggles smiled thinly ....." He was always a master of the adverb.

Lon More
24th Jan 2013, 17:54
Eric Bogle - I Hate Wogs - YouTube

24th Jan 2013, 18:57
As the thread starter, have you tried to edit the title yet?

My post about changing the name of the thread was tongue in cheek with a bit of sarcasm. Anyway, thanks for your moral support. When I started the thread I had serious doubts about the title and expected the mods to change it. It's good to see that the thread has remained intact and no one is really offended.

24th Jan 2013, 19:07
I'm 75 years old in 10 days time and remember all these shows very well and like to think I am intelligent enough to understand intentions behind words. Love Thy Neighbour was DEFINITELY targeted at white racists (although in a gentle way) and was trying to show how stupid it was to "look down" on black folk. Till Death Do Us Part was similarly targetting ignorant people with biassed views. Anybody who thinks these programs are offensive to black people (or for that matter black people themselves who think this) are totally stupid and are worse than the racist/bigotted people portrayed in them.

24th Jan 2013, 19:23
We saw Love Thy Neighbour over here and I remember that the white guy always made a fool of himself. No one here, at least in Toronto, found it offensive. But I wonder what would have happened if they had shown it in the US?

Lon More
24th Jan 2013, 21:38
There were a couple of series that were pulled pretty quickly back in the late 1960s.
Curry & Chips - Episode 1 - YouTube

If There Weren't Any Blacks You'd Have to Invent Them by Johnny Speight - YouTube
The title alone would be unacceptable today.

24th Jan 2013, 22:45
That second programme was utter rubbish - no doubt that was why it didn't last!

24th Jan 2013, 23:15
.....It actually stood for Workers On Government Service and was on the back of the overalls worn .........

How about POM then ?

slight thread drift - I was flying in and out of Melbourne in the '70s, when a loader saw a trailer loaded with passenger bags labelled POM (Port Morseby)

He put them on the BOAC aircraft to London !

Flap 5
25th Jan 2013, 06:46
POM is clearly Port Morseby but was somehow misread as POHM. My understanding is that was 'Prisoner of His Majesty'. Of course other interpretations are available. :)

Lon More
25th Jan 2013, 06:57
That second programme was utter rubbish - no doubt that was why it didn't last!
agreed; not one of Johnny Speights' better efforts.

25th Jan 2013, 08:28
As a child and later as a young teen I had occasion to travel and linger at some length in and about urban and rural bits of the Old South (of the US) at the time when "Civil Rights" was not a phrase in active use. The artifacts and appliances of Segregation - as the base case for social order - were commonplace: separate schools and restaurants and bathrooms and on and on, with layers of detail and nuance that undoubtedly went way over my young head.

For all that, I saw and remember well that (out in the country, at least) there was a quite profound bond of collaboration and sharing and genuine fondness between whites and blacks sharing the space in towns and around the farm-economy countryside. Folk "of-color" and not were truly interdependent and social as a mutual voluntary choice, sharing the sorrows and joys of family births and deaths and weather and crops and pets and recipes and so on, without any of the edginess that entered into things during the mid-60's when activism and changing times made an firebrand issue of the customs for black-white relations that evolved from the smouldering ruins of the Southern US economy a hundred years earlier in the ashes of the US Civil War.

Studying that history later, one learned that the end of slavery as a legal process in mid 1860's left a vacuum of order and connectivity between the black and white populations there, but each needed the other for ongoing survival, so new rules were improvised and informally maintained for the mutual benefit of all, and that accomodation is what had evolved to the status-quo of the change-pregnant 1950's I was innocently observing, both from the very deep inside and perspectives of a very different style elsewhere.

In those times the N-word was commonly used without disparagement or enmity... along with many colorful variations, by all parties. Only in the mid-60's did it become an icon of discriminatory unfairness and enforced economic and cultural gulf that was taken as a slur by the angry and menacing young blacks who mobilized to carry the cause of equal CIVIL rights to fruition.

In more than a few places about the world today one can see localities where the divisions between clans and tribes of people living on opposite sides of a hill, a valley, a river or sand-pit have been used to sustain enmity and outright warfare for thousands of years - on premises no more valid and certainly no clearer than those that separated blacks and whites in the US South for the century after slavery's end.

It stands as a much-needed credit to the Amis that, in addition to demonstrating such great prowess at blowing things up and manufacturing gadgets and tools of incredible diversity for a modern world, they were able in a fraction of a generation to turn around a cultural travesty before it became a totally destructive rift in the national culture.

The Americans inherited a complicated mess -- coming from a human-trade for-profit industry created and promulgated by English and Mediterranean and African merchants for their own personal gain in the early days of colonizing America -- yet made relatively quick work of turning it around to become a social benefit and a conspicuous strength in the evolving society of the USofA.

25th Jan 2013, 12:36
I do find White folks doing Black Face to be offensive....as I consider it an insult to people of color.

Amos and Andy was a great comedy....ranked right up there with Red Skelton, Milton Berle and Jack Benny.
A curious comment, if I may say so. :confused:

Amos 'n Andy were, after all, white men blacked up.

25th Jan 2013, 13:09
I believe "Black and White Minstrel" shows date back over 150 years and are an "art form". "Mr Interlocutor", "Mr Bojangles", and others were never in any that I saw presented as an insult to any.

The music of whats-is-name [Stephen Foster] was to me never anything but music and musical, I mean "Some folks say", "Polly-Wolly-Doodle", "Old Man River" (I think that was his), "Swannee River" and so on.

Of course being a white Northern European I was not in a position to be offended, but then there are many Irish jokes, Scottish jokes, German jokes, Hieland jokes, that still manage to leave the world unscathed.

In the RN we had some, not many I suppose but certainly some, officers "of colour" who were genuinely accorded the same respect as any others.

At one place where I worked we had a very good mimic. He did an excellent Peter Sellers "Paki", an equally excellent Davaar, and his Welsh was unrivalled by our solitary Welshman. One day a "Paki" joined our group and to our horror the English chap ("Bill") arrived, not noticing the new face, and launched into his routine Paki "Good morning! Good morning! Good morning! Oh vart a terrible day" .. and then broke off in apology.

Within days the new arrival would pause in some story or other and say "Oh dear me, Bill. You tell the rest, for Goodness sake. You are doing me much better than I can".

In their day, the Kingston Trio had a song:

They're rioting in Africa. They're starving in Spain. There's hurricanes in Florida and Texas needs rain.
The whole world is festering with unhappy souls. The French hate the Germans. The Germans hate the Poles.
Italians hate Yugoslavs. South Africans hate the Dutch and I don't like anybody very much!
But we can be tranquil and thankful and proud for man's been endowed with a mushroom shaped cloud.
And we know for certain that some lovely day someone will set the spark off and we will all be blown away.
They're rioting in Africa. There's strife in Iran. What nature doesn't do to us will be done by our fellow man.

Sure, nothing's perfect.

25th Jan 2013, 14:21
In 1879, there were something like 24 'pirated' versions of HMS Pinafore playing in New York. Pirated in that they paid no royalties and took many liberties with script. One of them proudly proclaimed itseld to be the 'Nigger Minstrel Pinafore'. Because of the piracy, (no pun intended) the first proper performance of The Pirates of Penzance' was held in New York on December 31st, 1879, to establish US copyright, although a token production took place in Paignton in the afternoon of the same day to establish UK copyright - without the proper costumes and the actors reading their scripts.

Later, a number of the original operettas were bowdlerised to be PC - long before the present trend to have everything pC.

25th Jan 2013, 15:02
Now that Oreo biscuits are to be made illegal, following the recent presidential swearing in, one hears that Pepperidge Farm Chocolate Chip Cookies are next on the hit list of banned substances on account of the offensive behaviour of the
biscuits concerned towards Malia and Sasha.

Mike X
25th Jan 2013, 15:45
...and you can't call anyone a k****r, but it's in the dictionary as a legitimate word from days gone by.

Just had a great braai and Philemon and Pamphilia are cleaning up.

25th Jan 2013, 15:48
Then there's this word (the world's gone crazy):
Controversies about the word "niggardly" - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Controversies_about_the_word_%22niggardly%22)

Mike X
25th Jan 2013, 15:57
...but there's no law against calling me a honkey.

Most of my best friends are non-white and many have been since my junior school days. We bust each other's chops and came to understand each other's cultures. Never a bad vibe.

Everyone/thing has other names assigned and if one is;) too small a person to be able to understand where and why a name originated, go read history (literally, at university).

25th Jan 2013, 16:05
I have been working on a paper based on Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness. The "n" word shows up a lot, but it's so that, at the time of writing, "nigger" was not loaded with its modern, offensive, meaning. It was just another way of referring to someone with African ancestry.

It's pretty interesting, the way that no less than Chinua Achebe got his knickers into a twist and unloaded on Conrad for being "a bloody racist" for writing this masterful work, one that actually paints a sympathetic picture of primitive Africans, and thoroughly condemns Belgian colonialists. The Africans do their thing, being "savages," but then they are in a primitive state, so that this is nothing wrong for them. You might catch a spear in the ribs, but that is their traditional African way of doing business. The Belgians, though, preach progress and enlightenment but are shown to be murderously greedy and low in what they practice.

"Racism" had not yet made it into the dictionaries; it was "racialism" then, respectable science that let you tell a wrong 'un by the color of his skin and the cast of his features.

If you want a real eye-opener, check out what the estimable Sherlock Holmes reads to Dr Watson about the Andamanese from a gazetteer, in The Sign of Four. It is pure, vicious slander, put there by Conan Doyle for no particular reason except to invent a sort of semi-human Indian villain let loose in dear old Blighty, until Sherlock finally settles his hash out on the Thames with a round from his .455 Webley. No namby-pamby coddling of malefactors there, Sir!

Conrad wrote another work, The Nigger of the Narcissus, that had its title changed to The Children of the Sea for the American market, but not because of "racism." No, it was feared by the American publisher that people would not buy a book they thought was principally about a black man. That was all.

I got a good laugh out of the Major in Fawlty Towers, the senile old codger. The joke there was his simple confusion over how his lady friend could get the niggers mixed up with the wogs, when anyone should be able to tell the difference.

Interesting: I just had an auto-correct, "wigs" for "wogs." What happens when I type Land Rover? Hmm... make that L and R over!

25th Jan 2013, 16:53
My local pet shop have the good sense to still sell Niger Seed, but many wets insist on calling it Nyger or even Nyjer .

25th Jan 2013, 18:18
On holiday in Florida in 1991 with my friend and both of our wives we went to a "dinner show" and stood in the bar for a drink whilst waiting for a table for the next show. There were about 20 or so in the large bar apart from us and most of them appeared to be locals. A large blonde guy introduced himself as the owner and was leading the conversation amongst everyone about how Florida had changed over the last how ever many years. He stunned us (but got lots of nodding heads from the locals) when he finished with "The whole damned state has not been the same since they gave niggers the vote." Being heavily outnumbered we kept schtum and just kept our heads down.

25th Jan 2013, 20:57
Of course other interpretations are available.

But not probably repeatable in polite company ( but then in Aus.... ! )

..and you can't call anyone a k****r,

South African colleague of mine made a flight to Jo'burg prior to retirement, and took his ski boots latched to one of those mini skiboot clips that enable them to be more easily carried.

Arriving at Jo'burg Customs he plonked them down on the counter with his suitcase, and the Hofficer asked what they were ?

They're k*****r kicking boots, replied my friend.

Great ! said the Customs guy - can you bring me a pair next trip ?

Airborne Aircrew
25th Jan 2013, 21:03
It's all really rather simple...

People are only offended by anything if they really want to be...

25th Jan 2013, 22:35
And here in Chicago. I had kaffir lime pie on the hotel menu just last night.

Not an asterisk in sight.

25th Jan 2013, 22:37
Not an asterisk in sight.

Good job, I find them very indigestible.

27th Jan 2013, 02:27
The whole damned state has not been the same

Don't just stick it to Florida, though.

One does remember the UK Parliamentary election not so long ago when one constituency party ran on the barely unofficial slogan "If you want a n*gg*r for a neighbour, Vote Labour", and won handsomely. As I recall, that was `way back when Harold Wilson was PM.