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  #21  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:24
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

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Ashishah, exactly, and not just in Switzerland.
Yep. As I said....people like this are everywhere.

Thank heavens for stand-up comedians and their pearls of wisdom.
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Old 31.08.2011, 16:25
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

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What do you mean it isn't racism; racism is discrimination based on race:-
rac·ism (rszm)
n. 1. The belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others.
2. Discrimination or prejudice based on race.
Anthropologically, Germans and Swiss are, by and large, the same race, just different nationalities.
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Old 31.08.2011, 16:27
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

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Anthropologically, Germans and Swiss are, by and large, the same race, just different nationalities.
Hooo! Maybe she could tell them that! That will hurt them big time!

By the way, you are both from the same race and ancesters....

Kaboom Kishhhh!
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  #24  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:27
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

Are you sure it was really malicious? Most countries have some sort of "friendly hatred" for another (usually neighbouring) country.

I was at a band rehearsal yesterday and we played La Marseillaise. The conductor started saying "you need to play this a bit differently. The French are very... proud..." and then people started randomly chiming in with comments like "big gobs" etc, knowing full well that my partner is French (after having met him and everything). It wasn't intended in a vicious way, just a bit of banter.
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  #25  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:28
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

hmmm nope- not here they ain't

On the other hand, the Angles, Saxons (Jutes, Picts ..)


Kamarate- the same comments also apply to Genevans (Grandes Gueules, sorry Bertrand)
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  #26  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:29
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

I did fight back, hence the reaction "being Portuguese is not as bad as being German". As far as I noticed, it's a reflex: they notice too late I'm actually a foreigner. It's like they repeat the Blick and 20MIN crap like parrots, without using their brains. But having to deal with it everyday is starting to make me accumulate some anger, and I'm afraid I won't be able to keep a cool head on the next offence.

@racism topic: though the case I mentioned here is more properly called xenophobia, I used racism as a more general term in order to include in my question "how do you deal with it" also problems with race, which might include oder EF's. It is in the same tone of discrimination and a defence from a victim of racism might also apply to one of xenophobia. I could also include chauvinism here, but that's a whole other story and that one I know how to control.

I find it odd I have to go into technicalities though...

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Are you sure it was really malicious?
When done in a friendly tone, I don't like it but I let it go. This kind of incidents are no jokes, though. Germans used to be referred to "Schiss Dütscher" before I started working here. They dropped the swearing but the same offensive thought stays.
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  #27  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:31
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

well unfortuantely (as I was explained to many times in the office-kissing thread) it is a part of the culture here, and we as foreigners needs to adapt to their culture, accept it and move on. (but obviously I dissagree)
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  #28  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:35
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

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Tagesanzeiger complained a few weeks back that in Zurich, "the Germans take all the places at Gymnasium". According to the article, the main reason for that was that they had two unfair advantages: (1) their parents were academics (All of them? Ed.) and that (2) they spoke and wrote standard German easily whereas the Swiss struggled with this in the entry exam.
Now that they are going to make Swiss-German the standard-language in Kindergarten, that is certainly going to improve.
I'm from South-Germany and we didn't exactly invent High-German and I'm mostly fine with any "let's keep the Swiss identity" campaign - but mandating a dialect in Kindergarten is way beyond what even right-wing traditionalist might suggest in Germany.
In some parts of the country, parents would be happy if the majority did speak some form of German...
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  #29  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:37
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

Having said all that, I often hear my self saying "Bloody _______* twat!" when someone annoys me.

*Insert relevant nationality here, including own.

Edit: Thinking about it, you should have said "Rather a German Hauswart, than a Swiss eh?"
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  #30  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:37
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

Chemmie - I agree adapting is very important- but accepting racism is just not acceptable. It might be part of the culture of some Swiss, but certainly NOT the majority, I am very happy to say (as a Swiss).
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  #31  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:40
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

I for one would very much appreciate a German caretaker, who speaks the understandable version of the language.
Nur her mit dem deutschen Filz!
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  #32  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:41
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

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Chemmie - I agree adapting is very important- but accepting racism is just not acceptable. It might be part of the culture of some Swiss, but certainly NOT the majority, I am very happy to say (as a Swiss).

Very true, and definitely not the majority. I think the issue here lies when those who don't consider themselves racist make a comment with no intended racist implications, that comes out as racially offensive. Again, like the office-kissing, there's never the intent to offend or make anyone uncomfortable, but because of the cultural mix, it still happens.
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  #33  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:45
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

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Chemmie - I agree adapting is very important- but accepting racism is just not acceptable. It might be part of the culture of some Swiss, but certainly NOT the majority, I am very happy to say (as a Swiss).
It's the age-old saying: "I'm not racilist (sic), but...".

Hmm, seems I vist the DM site to often.
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  #34  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:46
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

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Edit: Thinking about it, you should have said "Rather a German Hauswart, than a Swiss eh?"
Or at the very least "Oh Germans, Swiss, you all sound the same to me!"

A Swiss woman was telling me how her son is dating a German girl and spends a lot of time in Germany with her. And she added "Which is fine with me if he spends his time there with her, as there are enough of them over here already". I wonder what the wedding would be like?
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  #35  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:56
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

The perfect thread for one of my favourites.

You know, it's a curious thing, I don't know if you've ever thought of this, but England hasn't really got a national song, you know, just for England; there's plenty for Great Britain. That's quite different. You have to be very careful how you use these terms, too. The rule is: if we've done anything good, it's "another triumph for Great Britain" and if we haven't, it's "England loses again". Have you noticed that?
All the others, they've got songs about their countries, you know, the Scots, like "Scotland for aye" (or for "me" as it should more properly be). And the Welsh and the Irish have got songs saying how marvelous they are and making rude remarks about the English in their own languages. In the case of the Welsh I think this is the pot calling the saucepan "bach".
What English national song have we got? "Jerusalem" . . . "There'll always be an England". Well, that's not saying much, is it? I mean, there'll always be a North Pole, if some dangerous clown doesn't go and melt it.
I think that the reason for this is that in the old days - you know, the good old days when I was a boy - people didn't, we didn't bother in England about nationalism. I mean, nationalism was on its way out. We'd got pretty well everything we wanted and we didn't go around saying how marvelous we were - everybody knew that - any more than we bothered to put our names on our stamps. I mean, there's only two kinds of stamps: English stamps in sets at the beginning of the album, and foreign stamps all mixed at the other end. Any gibbon could tell you that.
But nowadays nationalism is on the up and up and everybody has a national song but us. The Americans have national songs, like "My country 'tis of thee", which they sing to the tune of "God save the Queen", I may say, and which together with their long range forecasting of our weather I find hard to forgive. Yes, and the Germans - and whatever you say about the Germans (and who doesn't) - what a marvelous song that was: "German, German overalls". Now there's a song.
Well, the moment has come, and none too soon; we have a song here which, I think, fills this long-felt want and I hope that all true-born English men and women in our audience will join in the last chorus. And if you don't have the good fortune to be English true-born, or a man, or a woman, I hope you'll join in as an ordinary mark of simple decent respect. This song starts with, I think, a very typical English understatement.


The English, the English, the English are best
I wouldn't give tuppence for all of the rest.

The rottenest bits of these islands of ours
We've left in the hands of three unfriendly powers
Examine the Irishman, Welshman or Scot
You'll find he's a stinker, as likely as not.

Och aye, awa' wi' yon Edinburgh Festival

The Scotsman is mean, as we're all well aware
And bony and blotchy and covered with hair
He eats salty porridge, he works all the day
And he hasn't got bishops to show him the way!

The English, the English, the English are best
I wouldn't give tuppence for all of the rest.

Ah hit me old mother over the head with a shillelagh

The Irishman now out contempt is beneath
He sleeps in his boots and he lies through his teeth
He blows up policemen, or so I have heard
And blames it on Cromwell and William the Third!

The English are noble, the English are nice,
And worth any other at double the price

Ah, iechyd da

The Welshman's dishonest and cheats when he can
And little and dark, more like monkey than man
He works underground with a lamp in his hat
And he sings far too loud, far too often, and flat!

And crossing the Channel, one cannot say much
Of French and the Spanish, the Danish or Dutch
The Germans are German, the Russians are red,
And the Greeks and Italians eat garlic in bed!

The English are moral, the English are good
And clever and modest and misunderstood.

And all the world over, each nation's the same
They've simply no notion of playing the game
They argue with umpires, they cheer when they've won
And they practice beforehand which ruins the fun!

The English, the English, the English are best
So up with the English and down with the rest.

It's not that they're wicked or natuarally bad
It's knowing they're foreign that makes them so mad!

For the English are all that a nation should be,
And the flower of the English are Donald (Michael)
Donald (Michael) and Me!


Thanks to Flanders and Swann


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  #36  
Old 31.08.2011, 16:57
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

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Or at the very least "Oh Germans, Swiss, you all sound the same to me!"

A Swiss woman was telling me how her son is dating a German girl and spends a lot of time in Germany with her. And she added "Which is fine with me if he spends his time there with her, as there are enough of them over here already". I wonder what the wedding would be like?
super efficient and on time id guess, if i were to add some positive rasicm
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Old 31.08.2011, 17:06
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

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Hiding a sardine in their PC makes me feel better, even if it doesn't improve their behaviour.
I've actually done something like that. Not a sardine but a complete fish, or what was left of it after I'd grilled and eaten it. It failed. Contrary to common belief fish don't rot in a situation like that but simply dry out, and don't smell at all.
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  #38  
Old 31.08.2011, 17:07
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

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*song*
I'll take that the Portuguese were not included in this song because among all the stinky/blotchy neighbours, we were the only ones that put up with the English and always backed up their silliness (even if it just to teach those Spanish/French a well derserved lesson!)

We love you too, guys!

*sings along*
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  #39  
Old 31.08.2011, 17:07
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

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Anthropologically, Germans and Swiss are, by and large, the same race, just different nationalities.
And from my experience, this is exactly the source of many problems between Swiss and Germans.

When someone with no knowledge of the German language moves to Switzerland, they are aware that they're entering a culture different from theirs. With the learning of the language, they also get to know the culture a bit better. They are often very eager to understand the Swiss and try to get accustomed to their ways.

Different story with most the German guys I've met. They come to Switzerland expecting everything to work the same as in Germany.
Since they don't need to learn the language, they often don't bother to learn about the culture either. They're not aware that certain things they say can be offensive to Swiss.

Take the example of ordering a beer. A German says "Ich krieg ein Bier". This is perfectly normal in Germany. But to a Swiss this is kind of rude. To him, this sounds like "Me. Beer. Now. Go!!!" A Swiss would rather say "Ich hätte gerne ein Bier". Sounding like "If you don't mind the trouble, I would love to enjoy a beer right now".

So I think in the case of the general resentment of Germans, it's not only the Swiss' fault.

Please don't get me wrong, I'm against any form of racism. Everything I write here is from my personal experience with Germans. I personally get along with most of them just fine, but I'm actively aware of their situation. I used to live very close to the border and have quite a few German friends. If I don't get along with one them it's not a matter of race.
I just think, there is work to be done on both sides.
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  #40  
Old 31.08.2011, 17:11
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Re: Dealing with colleague racism

Can't believe none of the nerds have picked up on your user name Manny!!

How are those souls doing?
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