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  #21  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:14
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Re: Kids in blackface

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Maybe schoolgirls don't allow the same amount of time in the morning, to apply the slap, as an adult woman.

I'm sorry ... but it always seems that those from continental North America, always seem to be on a guilt trip when it comes to racial PC, and tend to try to completely over-compensate for the misendeavours of their predecessors.

oh noes, sorry the PC police is trying to infringe on your right to offend a marginalized minority group
  #22  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:15
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Re: Kids in blackface

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Lib - this schmutzli thing is a red herring, and bears no part of the discussion here.

Schmutzli's are traditionally woodsmen, i.e. those who made their living from working with and in the forests. Traditionally when there was a high demand for charcoal (other than for BBQ's), it was made at source, in clearings in the woods and was the work of these woodsmen. Now if you or I were handling blackened, partly-burned wood, it is very likely that our hands and faces would take on the same colour.
..here, read for yourself.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knecht_Ruprecht

I think I slowly start to understand why so many EFers like living in Switzerland.
  #23  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:17
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Re: Kids in blackface

http://whitmanpioneer.wordpress.com/...gnites-campus/

http://blogs.abcnews.com/theblotter/...unfinishe.html

http://www.dailyorange.com/2.8657/bl...uses-1.1247695

Definitely not unique to Switzerland
  #24  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:18
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Re: Kids in blackface

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..here, read for yourself.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knecht_Ruprecht

I think I slowly start to understand why so many EFers like living in Switzerland.
Ironically, the guy in the picture has only got a beard on - no make up as far as I can see. That's what we have seen in Zurich.
  #25  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:20
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Re: Kids in blackface

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..here, read for yourself.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knecht_Ruprecht

I think I slowly start to understand why so many EFers like living in Switzerland.
But that's in Germany, I don't see the connection . As TiMow said, Schmützli is traditionally a woodsman and charcoal burner, and hands "naughty" kids coals at Christmas. It has absolutely nothing to do with being dark-skinned, he's just "dirty" because of his work.
Is it also offensive to darken your face if you're playing a chimney sweep?
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  #26  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:20
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Re: Kids in blackface

Laurence Olivier used blackface when he played Othello in the eponymous film. Is it okay if it's for art?

Isn't dressing up art as well? Where is the line?

Question to the anti-black face brigade. Is there a line? Or is it never okay?
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Old 27.05.2011, 11:24
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Re: Kids in blackface

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oh noes, sorry the PC police is trying to infringe on your right to offend a marginalized minority group
Since when have Africans in Africa been a marginalized minority group?
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Old 27.05.2011, 11:24
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Re: Kids in blackface

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it's baffling to me that people still dont understand that what's considered offensive is based on history, culture and prior use/misuse. blackface is offensive because it was used in western societies to mock the appearance and behavior of people of african heritage. so those do it today are drawing on THAT history. you don't get to make up your own, modern interpretation of blackface as a harmless and objective portrayal of africans simply because you think it's logical.
In general I agree but I don't agree with this part: "so those do it today are drawing on THAT history. " You simply don't know the motivations of those doing it today.
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  #29  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:25
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Re: Kids in blackface

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..here, read for yourself.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knecht_Ruprecht

I think I slowly start to understand why so many EFers like living in Switzerland.
Sorry Lib - another red herring, and not really conclusive to anything - every country has their own take on Christmas, and German folklore (in your Wiki eg), is obviously no exception, but where's the relevance?
  #30  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:26
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Re: Kids in blackface

So, after a bit of thought, I reckon as follows. Blackening up is offensive and shouldn't be done, for the mere fact that it's offensive to others...in America.

I am white but when I go to American I'm not white, I'm English. I'm not "white" because I was never part of the slavery/civil rights dynamic. I never benefited from it, was never harmed by it, and it's not my problem. I don't have any guilt about it and don't owe anything to anybody. Black-face is part of a collection of sensitive items in the States along with certain words and ways of speaking that cause offence. For this reason, it shouldn't be done there.

But Switzerland (and indeed the UK) has none of the heritage of slavery and civil rights and therefore what is offensive in one country, isn't in another. Much like words are not innately offensive, so actions aren't either. It's about being sensitive to one's surroundings and I very much doubt there'd be anyone, of any colour that would be sensitive to dark face paint in Switzerland. I know for a fact that black Africans aren't offended by it (where it's meant well).
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Old 27.05.2011, 11:29
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Re: Kids in blackface

So was Michael Jackson a walking insult to me then?
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  #32  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:29
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Re: Kids in blackface

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It's the time of year when high school kids dress in costumes on appointed days. Last week I saw a bunch of 'North American Indians' and was a little surprised.
Did they wear warpaint? That only "surprised you" yet didn't offend you? You could transfer your whole argument for African colonisation etc and transpose to European colonisation of the Americas.
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  #33  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:29
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Re: Kids in blackface

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..here, read for yourself.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knecht_Ruprecht

I think I slowly start to understand why so many EFers like living in Switzerland.
Did you read it yourself?

The traditions vary, but "Ruprecht" is as clear as a reference as it gets: He symbolizes the devil. Yes, the devil is typically black, i do not think this is a reference to colored humans though. Where I grew up did Knecht Ruprecht have a blackened face, a beard and often even horns on his head.

I just do not see where this has anything to do with Africa or black people. We did not have any colored people in central Europe until very recently. We therefore hardly have the same racial PC discussions as the US.

I grew up in a very catholic area and on the 6th of January would we kids dress up as the three wise men and walk from door to door to collect money for charity. One would be dressed up in a Moorish way and blacken his face - Balthasar. I do not see anything racist in it either, after all was he a "wise man", so this can hardly be mockery...
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  #34  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:30
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Re: Kids in blackface

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I am white but when I go to American I'm not white, I'm English. I'm not "white" because I was never part of the slavery/civil rights dynamic. I never benefited from it, was never harmed by it, and it's not my problem. I don't have any guilt about it and don't owe anything to anybody. Black-face is part of a collection of sensitive items in the States along with certain words and ways of speaking that cause offence. For this reason, it shouldn't be done there.

But Switzerland (and indeed the UK) has none of the heritage of slavery and civil rights and therefore what is offensive in one country, isn't in another.
Uhmmmm, are you serious?
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Old 27.05.2011, 11:32
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Re: Kids in blackface

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So was Michael Jackson a walking insult to me then?
Un less you are an elf, no.
  #36  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:34
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Re: Kids in blackface

In fact, how many people contributing to this thread are actually dark-skinned? I guess Porsch is by his post, yet he is definitely in the "not-offended" camp, yet is probably the only one who would have the "right" to be offended.
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  #37  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:35
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Re: Kids in blackface

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Uhmmmm, are you serious?
What an argument. I give in. You win.
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  #38  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:36
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Re: Kids in blackface

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  #39  
Old 27.05.2011, 11:36
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Re: Kids in blackface

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I know for a fact that black Africans aren't offended by it (where it's meant well).
I can back this up, too. Just had a Facebook reply from a Nigerian friend living in London and she says (after reading a screenshot of the thread),

Ha ha, too funny - you shud be working :-). No not offensive to me or my family. Isnt it too cold to run about in trad dress in Switzerland anyways..?
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Old 27.05.2011, 11:37
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Re: Kids in blackface

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What an argument. I give in. You win.
Yes, no you win hands down, Britain had absolutely no heritage of slavery, racism or anything like that, it only happend in them there states.
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