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Old 07.06.2011, 16:12
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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I checked with the OP. The word used on the original sheet was 'Neger'. When I came here, the use of this was acceptable. The English 'equivalent' ws Negro. Also acceptable. On here, and in my dictionary, I read that neither word is PC now. Fair enough. But I still haven't seen the answer to the question of what the politically correct term is. Can anyone help?

I kinda touched on this earlier---but there's nothing politically correct about refering a person by their skin colour, unless you hit the tone, shade, and intensity right on. Since people skin colour changes due to time and position on the body, this is essentially impossible.
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Old 07.06.2011, 16:13
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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Is there anything positive associated with this word?
- black lable wiskey
- black Amex
- AMG black series

Honestly: There is nothing wrong with any color. Reducing people to their skin color is the problem.
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  #163  
Old 07.06.2011, 16:19
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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- black lable wiskey
- black Amex
- AMG black series

Honestly: There is nothing wrong with any color. Reducing people to their skin color is the problem.

how true, that reminds me of the comment my sister law also made when she saw my 6month old daughter.......Gosh, each time I see her, she gets darker and darker.....WTF.........
  #164  
Old 07.06.2011, 16:20
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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Because of this thread...
Last night, I decided to ask my Swiss husband if he would ever refer to a black person as a "Näggr" (I even used the German pronunciation), and his response was "No!" I asked "Why not?" and he said, "Because that's offensive."

That pretty much settled this debate for me.

The poster above raised a good point, though, about the word "black" also being offensive to describe an African. But this leads me to question what word(s) I should use to describe someone of African descent but who was not born in Africa. In the US, I guess we use the term "African American" now, but I'm not sure if terms like "African Swiss" etc. would be used elsewhere?
In the UK many black people - especially those born and brought up there - regardless of whether they originate from Africa or the Caribbean, refer to themselves as either "Black British" or "Black Briton". The first of these classifications is included on many official UK documents.
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  #165  
Old 07.06.2011, 16:22
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

*sigh*

Yeah, hopefully the human race will, at some point, get over the melanin thing. I mean, it's not like we go around classifying or discriminating against people according to how much hair they have.
  #166  
Old 07.06.2011, 16:24
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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Because of this thread...
Last night, I decided to ask my Swiss husband if he would ever refer to a black person as a "Näggr" (I even used the German pronunciation), and his response was "No!" I asked "Why not?" and he said, "Because that's offensive."

That pretty much settled this debate for me.

The poster above raised a good point, though, about the word "black" also being offensive to describe an African. But this leads me to question what word(s) I should use to describe someone of African descent but who was not born in Africa. In the US, I guess we use the term "African American" now, but I'm not sure if terms like "African Swiss" etc. would be used elsewhere?
I know it gets tricky, thats why I stated that personally I find it offensive.
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  #167  
Old 07.06.2011, 16:27
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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- black lable wiskey
- black Amex
- AMG black series

Honestly: There is nothing wrong with any color. Reducing people to their skin color is the problem.
black belt (in karate)
black watch (a tartan, also a now disbanded Scottish regiment)
all blacks (new Zealand rugger team)
Black Beauty (a Victorian novel, frequently used as name for a horse)
Black Bess (legendary horse of Dick Turpin)
Black Country (area of England, near Birmingham)
Black Prince (mediaevil English knight and prince)
Black Friars (religious order, also known as Dominicans)
  #168  
Old 07.06.2011, 16:28
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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On UK forms (employment with the state or other such applications) when you have to declare your ethnicity there is a slot for "Afro-Caribbean".
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Interesting. Do they also have "Indo-Caribbean" as well?
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Don't know - only remembered a few. The list is usually pretty extensive so it probably cover all eventualities.

Anything not covered is usually "Other" with a space to write.
Essentially, the official self defined ethnicity terms used in UK are "Asian", "Black", "Mixed", "Chinese/Other", "White", "Not Stated" - with subdivisions.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self_Defined_Ethnicity
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  #169  
Old 07.06.2011, 16:29
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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*sigh*

Yeah, hopefully the human race will, at some point, get over the melanin thing. I mean, it's not like we go around classifying or discriminating against people according to how much hair they have.
I think noticing differences is a lot different to discriminating. As a human we naturally look at any differences between ourselves and other people - some things we see as positive and other things we see as negative. Up to this point there is no problem.

Using these differences to discriminate; whether it's skin-tone, hair colour, hair length, gender, disfigurements, disabilities, whatever, is where it goes off the rails and becomes wrong.

I notice differences in people all the time but don't (at least consciously) use it either positively or negatively.

If someone is a sweetie-pie / knobhead, it doesn't matter what they look like - they are still a sweetie-pie / knobhead.
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  #170  
Old 07.06.2011, 17:22
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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I'm not sure I agree with you there lib.

As adults we should be able to use the word we're discussing.

Does calling it "N-Word" or "N****r" make it any less offensive?* We all know what the word in question is.

I've deliberately avoided it here because I'm responding to you and respect your revulsion of the word, but I wouldn't normally avoid using any word in a neutral way when discussing its prejorative use.



*And that's a genuine question. As a white anglo-saxon, I'm less sensitive to these things.
I'm not sure. If someone on this forum had been told ver fiikch dich ( you), then we should also be able to discuss how that was meant- whether it was said as a joke, term of affection or in a derogatory fashion. then the thread would be full of ver fikch dich and you with no censoring?
Actually I find the N word even more offensive than FU. It is supposed to be a bastardization of the Latin Niger ( black) or Spanish negro. But as far as I know the N word has always been used in a derogatory way. To be politically correct I would have thought that once we all understand what the word is then we don't need to write in in full for fear of causing offense.



But in the end it is up to the Swiss to decide the words tyhy deem fit for usage and content in Kindergarten. I was informed in Switzerland that the use of Swiss- German, even written was perfectly acceptable- words such as velo or glace. that it would be unnatural for a teacher not to use the common home language.


Well point proven- thanks for editing the F out of my post! No I'm serious I don't like the F word. Can we now have the same with the N word as it is upsetting some people on the forum?

Last edited by hoppy; 07.06.2011 at 17:56.
  #171  
Old 07.06.2011, 17:33
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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To be politically correct I would have thought that once we all understand what the word is then we don't need to write in in full for fear of causing offense.
You see that's the bit I don't understand. When I read "Nxxxxr", "Fxxx", "Cxxx", etc. I read the actual word not "N-ex-ex-ex-ex...".

To me, you either allow the word to be written (in a legitimate context) or you pretend it doesn't exist. Replacing it with some other symbol doesn't take away that word or, in my opinion, that word's power.
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  #172  
Old 07.06.2011, 17:51
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If I read the OP correctly, her child - who is dark skinned - was bullied by other children who chose to use this word in a deliberately intimidating way. Failure to address such behaviour at source merely serves to reinforce the idea in the bullies that such treatment of a fellow human being is acceptable.

I find some of the "it's not that bad posts" on this thread to be particularly lazy and offensive and I have to wonder at the attitudes of some EF members.

With regard to the school's response to the complaint from the parent, personally I would have escalated the matter until something was done. Tackling the parents of an individual child is one thing, however the school should have policies in place for dealing with bullying and other intimidation of children on grounds of race, nationality, creed, gender or sexual orientation. The school is failing in its duty of care otherwise.

Cheers,
Nick
Isn't this all conjecture? I wouldn't dispute that the N word may have been used by bullying children, but I have never heard it used in CH. We have no proof that it was ever on a written school exercise. If true then the teacher must have been extremely lacking in sensitivity and education- not KG appropriate.
I think that the press should have a copy of it, then we can stop discussing and actually do something about it.

I am sick of being asked to tick the ethnic box on forms, I know that it is designed to monitor discriminatory practice, but nowadays many who are racially very mixed, look at the form and scratch their heads. Iranians considering themselves Aryan tick the white/caucasian box, yet I am sure that they may be discriminated against.

OK, so the F word was edited out of my post above, which I understand but it means that the post has lost it's point somewhat because the comparison is not now effective. I sense that the N word is offensive to most of us,not something that we would normally use in polite conversation. So let's set the standard and (as the forum has in so many other ways helped to educate) act by banning the use of the N word on the forum.- please. At least we could take a vote on it.

Last edited by MusicChick; 07.06.2011 at 18:09. Reason: Merging consecutive posts.
  #173  
Old 07.06.2011, 18:06
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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The poster above raised a good point, though, about the word "black" also being offensive to describe an African. But this leads me to question what word(s) I should use to describe someone of African descent but who was not born in Africa. In the US, I guess we use the term "African American" now, but I'm not sure if terms like "African Swiss" etc. would be used elsewhere?
It seems to me that it won't be us who will figure out how other people prefer to have us address them. I think there are lots of answers in this thread, actually. We can debate over PCness and culture having impact on this or not, but at the end of the day, if there is a kid who has some redneck yelling racially offensive stuff and this kid is not pleased with it, I will respect his wishes and will certainly not call him that. I think that's the message. I don't think the message should there is no need to be offended, since the kids didn't mean it, I do not think there is anybody here anymore who would buy into that. Kid's dignity is a fragile thing. I always felt the urge to protect that rather than go into far fetched socio/historical/cultural reasons that lay behind hostile behavior.

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take a trip to my neck of the woods......my neighbor, and her family have never been outside of Switzerland! maybe I'm stuck in some sort of twilight zone....

oh yes, and my sister in law hasnt been out side of the EU........but she lives in Argau
I have a feeling, even when people do travel a lot they can still end up quite unexposed, actually. What one grows up in can filter one's views very much. Some people soak up anything that comes buy, and do not even have to travel to be opendminded, too.
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  #174  
Old 07.06.2011, 18:28
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

Trust me this word IS used in Switzerland. I am a Swiss American. My father is from the Caribbean and mother from Switzerland. Over 30 years ago i had an experience similar to one of the posters. I was chased by group of kids my age and was repeatably called "Naggr" and few other words I didn't understand. I was about 7 at the time. My older cousin who was 10, stepped in and punched 2 of them in the face and the rest ran off.

That was in the 70s and I attribute the behavior to racial ignorance. These kids and just about every other Swiss person I met had never seen a black person live and up close....

Since then, I'm amazed at how much Switzerland has changed; particularly when it comes to diversity. However, it's also bothersome to see that term is still being used.

I was in Switzerland this fall visiting family. My aunts husband participates in a Jass league and had reached the finals. I wanted to see what serious Jass playing was all about. As I walked around the Jass Hall, I was referred to as "Naggr" by no less than 3 people.

I realize I am only a sample size of 1, but I can tell you, from my personal experience, that some Swiss still use this word.
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Old 07.06.2011, 19:10
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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Trust me this word IS used in Switzerland. I am a Swiss American. My father is from the Caribbean and mother from Switzerland. Over 30 years ago i had an experience similar to one of the posters. I was chased by group of kids my age and was repeatably called "Naggr" and few other words I didn't understand. I was about 7 at the time. My older cousin who was 10, stepped in and punched 2 of them in the face and the rest ran off.

That was in the 70s and I attribute the behavior to racial ignorance. These kids and just about every other Swiss person I met had never seen a black person live and up close....

Since then, I'm amazed at how much Switzerland has changed; particularly when it comes to diversity. However, it's also bothersome to see that term is still being used.

I was in Switzerland this fall visiting family. My aunts husband participates in a Jass league and had reached the finals. I wanted to see what serious Jass playing was all about. As I walked around the Jass Hall, I was referred to as "Naggr" by no less than 3 people.

I realize I am only a sample size of 1, but I can tell you, from my personal experience, that some Swiss still use this word.
The Swiss part pf me apologizes profusely, it is humiliating as a Swiss to be associated with such people. Hopefully the powers that be ( I learnt that phrase form other fourm members!) are listening and taking note.
But as I said many times i chickened out and left CH because I could not deal with the overt, hidden and institutionalized racism.

I am a techno idiot can someone pleas post an on-line poll where members can vote on whether the N word is acceptable? Or give me point by point instructions on how to do it? That way we can get a clearer picture and perhaps consensus?
  #176  
Old 07.06.2011, 19:35
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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I checked with the OP. The word used on the original sheet was 'Neger'. When I came here, the use of this was acceptable. The English 'equivalent' ws Negro. Also acceptable. On here, and in my dictionary, I read that neither word is PC now. Fair enough. But I still haven't seen the answer to the question of what the politically correct term is. Can anyone help?
I'd say you would be pc using the term 'Mitbürger schwarzer Hautfarbe'. I cannot think of any official form that would ask for ethnicity but instead whether someone has a 'Migrationshintergrund' (immigrant background).
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Old 07.06.2011, 19:48
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

flojo- how do you feel now on this? Will you actually DO something about it, beginning with a friendly chat with the teacher about how this made you feel, and how you think it is just not aproriate for a school worksheet? Good you aired your frustration here- but it won't do much good re teacher/education authorities.
  #178  
Old 07.06.2011, 20:13
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

It was wrong in the past, it's wrong now.
Education starts with children, unfortunately discrimination is universal so it's not about to change except that hopefully people will be less crazy with time.
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  #179  
Old 07.06.2011, 21:47
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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But I still haven't seen the answer to the question of what the politically correct term is. Can anyone help?
Usually, when I meet a person to which this question applies, I just ask what his name is and then I use that term to call him. Works with women too, so I've heard.
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Old 07.06.2011, 22:04
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Re: Should the word "Näggr" be used in Swiss German?

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Usually, when I meet a person to which this question applies, I just ask what his name is and then I use that term to call him. Works with women too, so I've heard.
Interestingly enough, I have found that the correct term to refer to someone is Sir or Ma'am or Miss.

I was taught this lesson by a very good friend of mine who ironically enough was African American. He used to call me sir even though I was two years younger than he. I asked him why he did that and his response was that one never went amiss by referring to others in such a manner that showed that you respected them as human beings.

Believe it or not but this has served me well on the 5 continents that I ha visited.
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