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Faggots, retards, and volunteer moderators.

 
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paul wheaton wrote:My understanding is that in england, "faggot" can be a stick or a cigarette.


In England you can refer to a cigarette as a "fag" but definitely not as a "faggot".

https://english.stackexchange.com/questions/290786/origin-of-fag-meaning-a-cigarette-in-british-english
 
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It seems to me that what has been lost (in addition to common sense) is the inability to read something and be able to identify context and intent.  The English language, in all it's forms and dialects, have many words with varied meanings.  Some is slang and others are words rooted in the language itself.  Both the context and intent of the post being referred to here, not only is the word properly used, when considered in its context, but also within its intent.  People look to be offended.  If more people would not put up with those who take terms out of context and with no ill intent, instead of bowing to the PC pressure, we'd have a much more civil society, both on and offline.
 
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William Allendorf wrote: I remain your Superannuated Flatulence ever



I'm SOOOOO stealing this!!! :P
 
pollinator
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I want to thank you volunteer moderators again!

What you are doing is truly amazing.

I don't spend much time on FB, twitter and other such forms of social media but I do occasionally spend time on email lists and discussion forums. One of my favorites, I think the best of them as far as non-Permies sites go, is mainly comprised of researchers, professors and other people interested in a very specific topic. They are what you might call very well read people who are excellent writers and whose social skills are good and who all share somewhat similar values. Still, it never ceases to amaze me how quickly things can get heated in that forum and how much one person can influence the morale of the whole discussion forum. No one ever uses any "bad" words there but they still manage to get into a fight while argumenting politely and rationally. I don't think they are evil people. They just do not know how to be nice. As there are no moderators or publishing standards, all that a peace loving person can do is to try and get in between the fighters and try to make them both feel heard while looking for common ground. That works up to a point but it doesn't solve the real issue.

My point is that what you are doing here is so much more than just deleting posts with certain words. You are helping people to be nice, to present their rational arguments in a non-hurtful way. That to me is something worthy of a Nobel Peace Prize
 
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I've been thinking about this thread and in particular it's title. Several people have said that it was thought provoking, that the title caused them to read the thread and comment, and that it was maybe even clever. Several people have seemed to support the idea that it's ok to use what is generally thought to be unacceptable language in the cause of the greater good.

But after thinking about it for a bit, I think not. Poor language is simply poor language. There really is no excuse for using it. There are much better ways to express ourselves. We don't need to resort to the profane, disparaging or disgusting. There's just no need. I'm not suggesting that words be banned. For example I've always thought the whole American requirement to say "the n-word" instead of the actual word, was/is a very childish response to a word that need never be used in the first place. If you're going to use a word, don't play games with it. Be honest and use it. But, words that once were acceptable words like that one, and like those used in the title of this thread, have now acquired such an enormous amount of loaded meaning that there just is no longer need to use them for any reason. We are better than that. We can do better than that. We do not need to use language that upsets or demeans or condescends or patronizes.
 
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I suspect the point of this thread is that words that are very offensive in one part of the world, have no such emotional baggage in another.  

Sometimes...

Person A uses a word as they understand it to mean: for example faggot for describing a bundle of small sticks.

Person B lives in a part of the world where that word is an extreme insult.

Person A has no idea that Person B is insulted by this word.  Person B is angry and upset that Person A is being deliberately offensive.

A has no idea there is a problem.  B has no idea that A has no idea there is a problem.  Things escalate.  

This thread is about communicating.  It's about helping people understand that this situation happens.  Neither A nor B is to blame.  But maybe B has the advantage because they are aware that something is wrong here, and they can use the tools at their disposal to communicate their discomfort.  We have a snazzy report button that is perfect for this situation.  Person B politely draws the attention of the moderators to the post in question and lets us know that this word is causing unpleasantness.  


 
pollinator
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Mike Barkley - Chi chi is what most people of Mexican heritage around here call breasts, in fact, it is the standard word that most people around here use in reference to breastfeeding. They ask their children if they want a chi chi. I did, everyone I know did. More amusing to me, is that a bunch of grown men would giggle at this.

That aside, I do understand being mindful of others experiences.
 
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I have a friend who grew up in a Mexican-American family, where they used the term "ya-ya" to refer to their female parts, as in, "Go take your bath and make sure you wash your ya-ya."   It was a big family with a lot of girls --- lots of ya-ya's.  The term was used politely, not to be naughty or crude.

One day some of their friends came to visit.  They were from the Philippines, where the term "Ya-ya" was a term of affection used to refer to a housekeeper or nanny.  "The Ya-ya is coming over tonight to watch you while we go out for dinner."  

So after dinner, the adults moved to the living room to sit and talk, while the kids went to the back room where someone put a video on the TV to entertain them.  Someone else asked, "Where are the kids?", to which the Filipino mom responded, "Oh, we set them in front of the electric Ya-Ya."

My friend spit out her coffee in laughter.
 
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Galadriel Freden wrote:

Burra Maluca wrote:

a favourite meal...



My (Welsh!) husband has fond memories of eating them at boarding school.  I don't dare ask what's in them :)



They are delicious!

 
Mandy Launchbury-Rainey
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My friend was the head of French at the same school at which I taught, and one exam that had been set was a translation of a passage describing a young man's first day at work and how he had overslept.  His father knocks at his bedroom door and tells the lad that it is 7.30. 'Zut alors' exclaims the boy. 'Je suis en retard'. This translates as Oh no! I am late! However, one student translated it as 'Oh shit! I am a retard!'  I told a group of my students about this (many years later, different school) and they found it hilarious. But if they ever made a mistake in their work, they would exclaim Zut alors - je suis en retard!

Faggots are delicious meaty goodness and can be made to this recipe by the awesome Scott Rea, butcher extraordinaire
 
 

Joseph is quite right - us Brits think it is hilarious that you have a president named after a fart.
 
pollinator
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My story to add...

I was an au pair to a trio of English children when I was 19 years old. A few days into my stay, they were acting up in the way children do... nothing terrible, but a little bratty. As a Canadian, and thinking nothing of it, I affectionately chided them: "That's enough, you little buggers!"

Shocked silence. That day I learned that bugger had another meaning, and that it was considered a swear word over there. Oops! Oh well, just part of my education.
 
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Hi Heidi,

Language is constantly in flux.  Words change their meanings geographically, as you pointed out, and they change by generation, sub culture, and a variety of other ways.  ....including family to family.  Most families have, at some level, their own private language. That is words and expressions that take on a special meaning.  For example, my father had a code word of "Christmas Tree".  If he used that word in any context, it meant that there was a serious problem , and we were to follow his lead without question. To explain, my father was a union president in Detroit in the 1950s. Things could get exciting.
 
pollinator
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Heidi Schmidt wrote:My story to add...

I was an au pair to a trio of English children when I was 19 years old. A few days into my stay, they were acting up in the way children do... nothing terrible, but a little bratty. As a Canadian, and thinking nothing of it, I affectionately chided them: "That's enough, you little buggers!"

Shocked silence. That day I learned that bugger had another meaning, and that it was considered a swear word over there. Oops! Oh well, just part of my education.





Bugger is not considered an offensive word in NZ and this iconic ad aptly illustrates its common usage https://www.nzonscreen.com/title/bugger-toyota-hilux-commercial-1999
 
Heidi Schmidt
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Megan Palmer wrote:

Heidi Schmidt wrote:My story to add...

I was an au pair to a trio of English children when I was 19 years old. A few days into my stay, they were acting up in the way children do... nothing terrible, but a little bratty. As a Canadian, and thinking nothing of it, I affectionately chided them: "That's enough, you little buggers!"

Shocked silence. That day I learned that bugger had another meaning, and that it was considered a swear word over there. Oops! Oh well, just part of my education.





Bugger is not considered an offensive word in NZ and this iconic ad aptly illustrates its common usage https://www.nzonscreen.com/title/bugger-toyota-hilux-commercial-1999



Just got a very good laugh out of that... thanks!
 
Megan Palmer
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Heidi Schmidt wrote:
Just got a very good laugh out of that... thanks!



It never ceases to make me smile whenever I watch it!
 
gardener
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Heidi Schmidt wrote:My story to add...

I was an au pair to a trio of English children when I was 19 years old. A few days into my stay, they were acting up in the way children do... nothing terrible, but a little bratty. As a Canadian, and thinking nothing of it, I affectionately chided them: "That's enough, you little buggers!"

Shocked silence. That day I learned that bugger had another meaning, and that it was considered a swear word over there. Oops! Oh well, just part of my education.



Every time I hear that word I think of this song:

I love it. Even as an American, I think I get the gist of it.
 
Heidi Schmidt
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I love it! I think with a few lyrics changes in the verses, I might just be able to have a really good use for this song!
 
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Well...
Just to add to the cornfusion.

I'd always been told a Faggot was a burning ember.....hence the tie in with cigarettes.
 
pollinator
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To tie this back into something permaculture adjacent, the woody debris filled trenches and french drains i once thought were my own original idea, and have been building for years with great success have been used since Ancient Roman times. Their reference in English literature goes back centuries, but I now know why I never found them before online. I never thought to google “faggot drain”. It’s a very useful technique, too bad bigots ruined that word.
 
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Just found this forum, saw the clickbait-ish title and, even tho' it is 2 years later, had to add my $.02 worth. As a textile person, may I draw your attention to "faggoting", an embroidery stitch which has been PC'ed to ladder stitch. Also as a history buff, may I point out that WWI British tanks carried "bundles of sticks" so they could use them to cross ditches.

All interesting trivia bits aside, I would like to thank all the staff who make this site possible. May your holiday season be happy, merry, healthy and full of meaning and love.
 
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