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Use of the word "faggot"

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  • Seattle ThreadSeattle Thread Seattle?Registered User regular
    edited November 2006
    I had this argument with a friend of mine a few years back about the word "ghetto." She was saying that kids shouldn't be using it because the ghetto's a real thing and it's derogatory... I responded with the textbook definition of a ghetto, which is more akin to the Jewish districts of Berlin circa 1938, rather than the modern usage describing a low-income neighborhood.

    So words change, or they get adopted to different meanings. You can fight it, and scream "no no no, you shouldn't say that," but the change will happen anyways. And by outlawing, you're prolonging that change by acknowledging its derogatory nature. By saying "it's OK to say fag," it gradually loses its power.

    Seattle Thread on
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  • Whiniest Man On EarthWhiniest Man On Earth Registered User
    edited November 2006
    Makershot wrote:
    I had this argument with a friend of mine a few years back about the word "ghetto." She was saying that kids shouldn't be using it because the ghetto's a real thing and it's derogatory... I responded with the textbook definition of a ghetto, which is more akin to the Jewish districts of Berlin circa 1938, rather than the modern usage describing a low-income neighborhood.

    So words change, or they get adopted to different meanings. You can fight it, and scream "no no no, you shouldn't say that," but the change will happen anyways. And by outlawing, you're prolonging that change by acknowledging its derogatory nature. By saying "it's OK to say fag," it gradually loses its power.

    Which is all well, good, and totally wrong, but it still does nothing to help the people who are offended by it's usage in posts here, and therefore stop or don't ever start participating in the community.

    Whiniest Man On Earth on
  • RenegadeDrizztRenegadeDrizzt Registered User regular
    edited November 2006
    Makershot wrote:
    I had this argument with a friend of mine a few years back about the word "ghetto." She was saying that kids shouldn't be using it because the ghetto's a real thing and it's derogatory... I responded with the textbook definition of a ghetto, which is more akin to the Jewish districts of Berlin circa 1938, rather than the modern usage describing a low-income neighborhood.

    So words change, or they get adopted to different meanings. You can fight it, and scream "no no no, you shouldn't say that," but the change will happen anyways. And by outlawing, you're prolonging that change by acknowledging its derogatory nature. By saying "it's OK to say fag," it gradually loses its power.
    But to the majority of the population, faggot still has the same meaning it had when it was first used

    RenegadeDrizzt on

  • Whiniest Man On EarthWhiniest Man On Earth Registered User
    edited November 2006
    I'm totally familiar with the concept of reclaiming negative language, for the record. I've read Cunt, and this is a fairly common topic of conversation amongst my friends.

    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.

    Whiniest Man On Earth on
  • RenegadeDrizztRenegadeDrizzt Registered User regular
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    I'm totally familiar with the concept of reclaiming negative language, for the record. I've read Cunt, and this is a fairly common topic of conversation amongst my friends.

    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.
    I'm bringing porchmonkey back!

    RenegadeDrizzt on

  • TubeTube Administrator, ClubPA admin
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    Which is all well, good, and totally wrong, but it still does nothing to help the people who are offended by it's usage in posts here, and therefore stop or don't ever start participating in the community.

    I'm sorry, but if people are determined to be offended by a word regardless of it's context and use then they are just going to have to go ahead and be offended. SE is now an environment where it is pretty much impossible to seriously insult someone on the basis of their sexuality. Why? Because all the power has been taken from the "hate" words.

    Tube on
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  • TubeTube Administrator, ClubPA admin
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.

    Bullshit. That boils down to "only certain people can say certain things, but discrimination is still totally bad"

    Tube on
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    This hurts but I deserve it

  • Whiniest Man On EarthWhiniest Man On Earth Registered User
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    Which is all well, good, and totally wrong, but it still does nothing to help the people who are offended by it's usage in posts here, and therefore stop or don't ever start participating in the community.

    I'm sorry, but if people are determined to be offended by a word regardless of it's context and use then they are just going to have to go ahead and be offended. SE is now an environment where it is pretty much impossible to seriously insult someone on the basis of their sexuality. Why? Because all the power has been taken from the "hate" words.

    That runs 100% counter to trying to make these forums as open and welcoming to new people as possible.

    How many times does it have to be said? Unless you're the one who's facing opression from hate speech, you don't get to determine the context/offensiveness of the speech. Context is only used as a defensive argument to defend people's casual usage of language that they KNOW is offensive. The argument that the context changes the language at it's base is still founded on the fact that "faggot" is unacceptable or offensive language. You're acknowledging that it's fucked up, but then saying it's okay because of how you said it. I'm saying that you don't get to determine if it's okay, because you're not the one facing the consequences.

    Whiniest Man On Earth on
  • Whiniest Man On EarthWhiniest Man On Earth Registered User
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.

    Bullshit. That boils down to "only certain people can say certain things, but discrimination is still totally bad"

    Nope. I'm not saying that only African-Americans can say "nigger", or that only homosexuals can say "faggot" - I'm saying that African-Americans and homosexuals are the ones who get to determine if "nigger" and "faggot" are offensive, because they're the targets of the speech.

    Whiniest Man On Earth on
  • AneurhythmiaAneurhythmia Registered User regular
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.
    Yes, you do have the right to talk about using it to mean whatever you want. You have the right to use it however you want. It's language. It's a concept.

    And if a person cannot discern context for words in a conversation, cannot quickly ascertain the nature of a social community, cannot discern social attitude, that person is an idiot. And I really don't give a flying fuck about being unwelcoming or offensive to idiots.

    Aneurhythmia on
  • ZimmydoomZimmydoom Registered User
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.

    Bullshit. That boils down to "only certain people can say certain things, but discrimination is still totally bad"
    Are you fucking kidding me? Could you possibly be any more condescending? "I'm going to go ahead and keep using this awful hate speech because I know I'm not a homophobe, so it doesn't mean anything! You can't be offended! Haha, stupid faggot!"

    Yes, that statement was hyperbolic, but Jesus Christ man you cannot be serious. You do not get to decide what words connote hate speech for members of another minority group.

    Zimmydoom on
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  • TubeTube Administrator, ClubPA admin
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    I'm saying that African-Americans and homosexuals are the ones who get to determine if "nigger" and "faggot" are offensive, because they're the targets of the speech.

    I disagree. So we're at an impasse. Sorry. Have a certain skin tone or sexual orientation does not give anyone more of a right to decide anything, regardless of whether or not they "face the consequences".

    Tube on
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  • AneurhythmiaAneurhythmia Registered User regular
    edited November 2006
    Zimmydoom wrote:
    Yes, that statement was hyperbolic, but Jesus Christ man you cannot be serious. You do not get to decide what words connote hate speech for members of another minority group.
    So if only black people can make that decision, then only they could decide that white people could use the term derisively against them in the first place?

    Aneurhythmia on
  • Whiniest Man On EarthWhiniest Man On Earth Registered User
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    I'm saying that African-Americans and homosexuals are the ones who get to determine if "nigger" and "faggot" are offensive, because they're the targets of the speech.

    I disagree. So we're at an impasse. Sorry. Have a certain skin tone or sexual orientation does not give anyone more of a right to decide anything, regardless of whether or not they "face the consequences".

    You don't think that being a minority gives you more ability to judge what is or isn't offensive to that minority than someone who isn't?

    Interesting.

    Whiniest Man On Earth on
  • AneurhythmiaAneurhythmia Registered User regular
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    defrag wrote:
    I'm saying that African-Americans and homosexuals are the ones who get to determine if "nigger" and "faggot" are offensive, because they're the targets of the speech.

    I disagree. So we're at an impasse. Sorry. Have a certain skin tone or sexual orientation does not give anyone more of a right to decide anything, regardless of whether or not they "face the consequences".

    You don't think that being a minority gives you more ability to judge what is or isn't offensive to that minority than someone who isn't?

    Interesting.
    I'm offended when people play bad pop music in public.

    Aneurhythmia on
  • SlungsolowSlungsolow Registered User, ClubPA
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    defrag wrote:
    I'm saying that African-Americans and homosexuals are the ones who get to determine if "nigger" and "faggot" are offensive, because they're the targets of the speech.

    I disagree. So we're at an impasse. Sorry. Have a certain skin tone or sexual orientation does not give anyone more of a right to decide anything, regardless of whether or not they "face the consequences".

    You don't think that being a minority gives you more ability to judge what is or isn't offensive to that minority than someone who isn't?

    Interesting.

    actually it gives you a biased opinion on the matter. not to say that their opinion is always wrong, it just means isn't always right.

    Slungsolow on
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  • TubeTube Administrator, ClubPA admin
    edited November 2006
    defrag wrote:
    You don't think that being a minority gives you more ability to judge what is or isn't offensive to that minority than someone who isn't?

    Interesting.

    I don't think it gives you the sole right to decide.

    Tube on
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  • Garlic BreadGarlic Bread Registered User, Disagreeable regular
    edited December 2006
    defrag wrote:
    defrag wrote:
    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.

    Bullshit. That boils down to "only certain people can say certain things, but discrimination is still totally bad"

    Nope. I'm not saying that only African-Americans can say "nigger", or that only homosexuals can say "faggot" - I'm saying that African-Americans and homosexuals are the ones who get to determine if "nigger" and "faggot" are offensive, because they're the targets of the speech.

    Do you know how many gay people post here

    Do you know how many of them say "faggot"?

    all of them

    Garlic Bread on
  • RenegadeDrizztRenegadeDrizzt Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    Keith wrote:
    defrag wrote:
    defrag wrote:
    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.

    Bullshit. That boils down to "only certain people can say certain things, but discrimination is still totally bad"

    Nope. I'm not saying that only African-Americans can say "nigger", or that only homosexuals can say "faggot" - I'm saying that African-Americans and homosexuals are the ones who get to determine if "nigger" and "faggot" are offensive, because they're the targets of the speech.

    Do you know how many gay people post here

    Do you know how many of them say "faggot"?

    all of them
    I think we've already had this conversation, and moved to something else.

    RenegadeDrizzt on

  • scarlet st.scarlet st. Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    So am I base if I sleep with men but come here and don't give two shits about people using the word "faggot" and say it myself?

    scarlet st. on
    japsig.jpg
  • Bionic MonkeyBionic Monkey Registered User, ClubPA
    edited December 2006
    Tube

    If you and I throw around the word faggot in a casual conversation, we both know that it's not meant to be discriminatory or hateful. We both know that these forums are open-minded and tolerant. New users, however, could see the word faggot thrown around and take it as discrimination.

    Yeah, sorry, I saw your previous post and forgot to reply. I see your point, but would point out that said people would likely be similarly offended by content in the comic.
    I've read the majority of the comics, and I've never seen the word "faggot" used in a fashion that's not satirical
    Not to condone the use of the word in general conversation (as I personally find it incredibly distasteful), but Gabe & Tycho are both nearly 30. They were in their teens well before the word was common slang. If they were younger, they very well might have used it.

    I should also point out, despite Mod opinion in this thread, I have seen over-use of the "faggot" warned against in just about every occassion I've come across (though I don't go in SE).

    Bionic Monkey on
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  • AneurhythmiaAneurhythmia Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    So am I base if I sleep with men but come here and don't give two shits about people using the word "faggot" and say it myself?
    Is "base" some new faggot slang?

    Aneurhythmia on
  • scarlet st.scarlet st. Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    Keith wrote:
    defrag wrote:
    defrag wrote:
    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.

    Bullshit. That boils down to "only certain people can say certain things, but discrimination is still totally bad"

    Nope. I'm not saying that only African-Americans can say "nigger", or that only homosexuals can say "faggot" - I'm saying that African-Americans and homosexuals are the ones who get to determine if "nigger" and "faggot" are offensive, because they're the targets of the speech.

    Do you know how many gay people post here

    Do you know how many of them say "faggot"?

    all of them
    I think we've already had this conversation, and moved to something else.
    My faggy internet is too slow so I opted to skip page 2 (hence my previous post).

    To the OP - don't tell yourself you're some goddamned equal rights fighter. If you at any point said "the gay community" or implied as such, then you can just shut the fuck up.

    scarlet st. on
    japsig.jpg
  • Just_Bri_ThanksJust_Bri_Thanks Seething with rage from a handbasket.Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited December 2006
    defrag wrote:
    defrag wrote:
    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.

    Bullshit. That boils down to "only certain people can say certain things, but discrimination is still totally bad"

    Nope. I'm not saying that only African-Americans can say "nigger", or that only homosexuals can say "faggot" - I'm saying that African-Americans and homosexuals are the ones who get to determine if "nigger" and "faggot" are offensive, because they're the targets of the speech.

    Oh no! I disagree with this massivly. If some random American of African decent "Drops the 'N' bomb" on his friend jokingly in conversation, they have NO RIGHT to be offended if I as an American of Dutch ancestory do the same.

    They have signed away that 'right' by doing the very thing they may find offense with.

    For the most part, I am with Tube on this whole argument.

    Just_Bri_Thanks on
    We are the skeletons in our closets.
    We are the monsters under our beds.
  • scarlet st.scarlet st. Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    defrag wrote:
    defrag wrote:
    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.

    Bullshit. That boils down to "only certain people can say certain things, but discrimination is still totally bad"

    Nope. I'm not saying that only African-Americans can say "nigger", or that only homosexuals can say "faggot" - I'm saying that African-Americans and homosexuals are the ones who get to determine if "nigger" and "faggot" are offensive, because they're the targets of the speech.

    Oh no! I disagree with this massivly. If some random American of African decent "Drops the 'N' bomb" on his friend jokingly in conversation, they have NO RIGHT to be offended if I as an American of Dutch ancestory do the same.

    They have signed away that 'right' by doing the very thing they may find offense with.

    For the most part, I am with Tube on this whole argument.
    I don't think a white dude like you can make the call on that one (let's stick to faggot and not derail this thread with other racist terms. Nigger and faggot are not in any way equivalent). It is a personal choice, as racist as a black person may decide to be with the word.

    scarlet st. on
    japsig.jpg
  • Whiniest Man On EarthWhiniest Man On Earth Registered User
    edited December 2006
    I'm done here.

    Whiniest Man On Earth on
  • scarlet st.scarlet st. Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    defrag wrote:
    I'm done here.
    Good.

    scarlet st. on
    japsig.jpg
  • AneurhythmiaAneurhythmia Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    defrag wrote:
    I'm done here.
    Good.
    I don't think it's necessarily good. It might be more useful for defrag to understand the point, rather than just give up.

    Aneurhythmia on
  • scarlet st.scarlet st. Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    defrag wrote:
    I'm done here.
    Good.
    I don't think it's necessarily good. It might be more useful for defrag to understand the point, rather than just give up.
    I don't think he posts at SE, so I don't care.

    scarlet st. on
    japsig.jpg
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    Out of curiosity, which gay people should we listen to, the ones who are offended by "faggot," or the ones who aren't?

    Thanatos on
  • Garlic BreadGarlic Bread Registered User, Disagreeable regular
    edited December 2006
    Thanatos wrote:
    Out of curiosity, which gay people should we listen to, the ones who are offended by "faggot," or the ones who aren't?

    trick question

    gay people don't make sounds because they always have dicks in their mouths

    Garlic Bread on
  • scarlet st.scarlet st. Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    Thanatos wrote:
    Out of curiosity, which gay people should we listen to, the ones who are offended by "faggot," or the ones who aren't?
    The ones who aren't because this means they are socially progressive icon_teach.gif

    t keith that was fucking gold

    scarlet st. on
    japsig.jpg
  • Just_Bri_ThanksJust_Bri_Thanks Seething with rage from a handbasket.Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited December 2006
    defrag wrote:
    defrag wrote:
    Unless you're the one facing opression from offensive language, you don't have any right to talk about using it to remove it's "power" or connotation.

    Bullshit. That boils down to "only certain people can say certain things, but discrimination is still totally bad"

    Nope. I'm not saying that only African-Americans can say "nigger", or that only homosexuals can say "faggot" - I'm saying that African-Americans and homosexuals are the ones who get to determine if "nigger" and "faggot" are offensive, because they're the targets of the speech.

    Oh no! I disagree with this massivly. If some random American of African decent "Drops the 'N' bomb" on his friend jokingly in conversation, they have NO RIGHT to be offended if I as an American of Dutch ancestory do the same.

    They have signed away that 'right' by doing the very thing they may find offense with.

    For the most part, I am with Tube on this whole argument.
    I don't think a white dude like you can make the call on that one (let's stick to faggot and not derail this thread with other racist terms. Nigger and faggot are not in any way equivalent). It is a personal choice, as racist as a black person may decide to be with the word.

    OK, then change my scenario to reflect a homosexual person, me as a heterosexual person, and the "'f' bomb". The concept remains the same.

    Just_Bri_Thanks on
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    We are the monsters under our beds.
  • RenegadeDrizztRenegadeDrizzt Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    edit nevermind

    RenegadeDrizzt on

  • scarlet st.scarlet st. Registered User regular
    edited December 2006
    If Queer Studies/Queer Theory were developed as a field several years later it would probably be called Faggot Studies.

    scarlet st. on
    japsig.jpg
  • ZimmydoomZimmydoom Registered User
    edited December 2006
    First off, I want to apologize for the use of expletives in my previous post. This is a serious subject and I don't want to be responsible for dragging things down into the mud.

    Please also understand that the following is not necessarily directed towards any one individual, so no one take unnecessary offense.

    The reason that words like "faggot" and "nigger" are still offensive is not because gays and blacks have decided such. It's because homophobes and racists have decided such. The reason these two words are so potentially hurtful is because they are still used by a significant number of people in order to cause hurt. These are not words that had other meanings, like "monkey" that can also be used as a racial epithet. These are words that have only had one meaning in the modern linguistic context: hate speech.

    Racists wrap the word "nigger" around them like a Confederate flag. It's a word that defines who they are: ignorant, bigoted, and hateful. THEY are the ones who define it, because they are the ones who give it its power. They are the ones who use it to fuel hatred and anger and bloodshed here and everywhere else in the world on a daily basis. Regardless of what the African-American community has done to the debate, the word still belongs to the assholes who first coined it, and will until they stop using it.

    When you use that word, or a word like it, you are associating yourself, however unintentionally, with those same bigots. You may not think that you harbor racist or homophobic sentiments, but the fact remains that you KNOW that people still find it offensive. And yet you still use it anyway. That, if anything, shows a disregard for the perfectly legitimate sensitivities felt within minority communities toward hate and discrimination. It shows a disregard for the feelings of other, real people who laugh and cry just like you. It may not make you a bigot, but it certainly doesn't make you a good person.

    Let me put it this way. Say that a homophobe walks up to a gay person on the street and calls him a faggot, clearly as an expression of hate. That person would feel offended, and this is a perfectly reasonable reaction to that kind of behavior. The next day, this person sees me call one of my friends a "faggot," clearly in jest. Are you honestly saying that this person has no right to feel offended? Am I permitted to say, "Sorry, nope, I know I'm not a homophobe, so I can use it all I want!" The fact of the matter is that my words caused hurt to another human being, and that this could have been avoided if I had been more careful in my choice of speech. The funny thing is, if I use the word "faggot" in public, I'm not just going to be offending gays, but any right-minded individual who hears me is going to think I am a crass, insensitive jackass (and they'd be right).

    Why shouldn't you use it? Because it hurts people. It hurts real people in very real ways, and you shouldn't want to be the kind of person who does that. Once again, perception is reality here. If people keep telling you that saying "faggot" has homophobic implications, and you keep on using it anyway, guess what that makes you?

    Zimmydoom on
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  • TubeTube Administrator, ClubPA admin
    edited December 2006
    I'm not trying to be a dick, but you're going to have to explain how that logically makes someone a homophobe. I mean seriously think about the meaning of that word.

    Tube on
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  • ZimmydoomZimmydoom Registered User
    edited December 2006
    I'm not trying to be a dick, but you're going to have to explain how that logically makes someone a homophobe. I mean seriously think about the meaning of that word.
    You're right, the implication there might be a little too strong. But the point is that you are ignoring the sensitivities of gay people by using that word. It's labeling, it's dehumanizing, and it's unnecessary.

    Zimmydoom on
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    Gim wrote: »
    Zimmydoom, Zimmydoom
    Flew away in a balloon
    Had sex with polar bears
    While sitting in a reclining chair
    Now there are Zim-Bear hybrids
    Running around and clawing eyelids
    Watch out, a Zim-Bear is about to have sex with yooooooou!
  • A duck!A duck! Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited December 2006
    Zimmydoom wrote:
    Why shouldn't you use it? Because it hurts people. It hurts real people in very real ways, and you shouldn't want to be the kind of person who does that. Once again, perception is reality here. If people keep telling you that saying "faggot" has homophobic implications, and you keep on using it anyway, guess what that makes you?

    Do you realise how many different words that applies to? Maybe I'm getting my ages messed up here, but as a 13+ forum I kinda sorta maybe expect people who come here to be able to parse a post and figure out whether it was sarcastic or on point.

    A duck! on
  • ZimmydoomZimmydoom Registered User
    edited December 2006
    A duck! wrote:
    Zimmydoom wrote:
    Why shouldn't you use it? Because it hurts people. It hurts real people in very real ways, and you shouldn't want to be the kind of person who does that. Once again, perception is reality here. If people keep telling you that saying "faggot" has homophobic implications, and you keep on using it anyway, guess what that makes you?

    Do you realise how many different words that applies to? Maybe I'm getting my ages messed up here, but as a 13+ forum I kinda sorta maybe expect people who come here to be able to parse a post and figure out whether it was sarcastic or on point.
    It really only applies to two words that I can think of, because there are only two words that fit the criteria I outlined above for a minority group that still faces large-scale violence and discrimination in the US based on who they are. There is no equivalent minority that faces the kind of hate that the gay community has historically dealt with. One could argue that Hispanics face similar discrimination as blacks these days, but there has never been a one-word rallying cry that defines anti-Hispanic sentiment, nor has it ever been near-universally acceptable to single out Hispanics in the way that it has been for gays and blacks.

    I hate to be glib, but "racists can't tell niggers apart."

    Zimmydoom on
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    Gim wrote: »
    Zimmydoom, Zimmydoom
    Flew away in a balloon
    Had sex with polar bears
    While sitting in a reclining chair
    Now there are Zim-Bear hybrids
    Running around and clawing eyelids
    Watch out, a Zim-Bear is about to have sex with yooooooou!
This discussion has been closed.