Posted by Donald Lowery on October 26, 2002
In Reply to: Re: Get a grip posted by Silver Surfer on October 23, 2002
: : : : : "However, on the political correctness front I recently watched the film Dambusters - made almost 60 years ago -and, even though Guy Gibson's dog Nigger got killed as usual, in this cut of the film nobody actually spoke the dog's name."
: : : : : Did this bother you?
: : : : : Is this political correctness? If the dog's name was "stupid English cunt" should they speak that on a movie or TV screen?
: : :
: : : : : Is this a film suitable for all viewers?
: : : : : If it is, is it necessary or even important for the dog's name to be pronounced?
: : : : : Is it appropriate to portray to children who may watch the film and may not understand the differences in attitudes over the last very few decades, the concept that to white people, blacks can be likened to animals and that blacks, as a generic people, are no better than dogs?
: : : : : Would you name your dog Nigger and why or why not?
: : : : : thanx.
: : : : As I've mentioned before (and as will no doubt be featured in the archives), my mother's generation (she's now in her late 70's) quite innocently used the phrase "nigger brown" to describe a very dark chocolate brown colour. I can happily understand why today this phrase would cause offence, but your rant about the "Dambusters" movie is sadly mistargeted. Guy Gibson owned a dark chocolate brown labrador, so it would have been quite natural in 40's England for him to name it "Nigger" simply because of its colouration. I'm in two minds as to whether the dog's name should have been mentioned in the film - it's been in every cut I can remember - there's no point in sanctifying history, but then again, Gibson's dog's name is hardly central to the history on offer.
: : : : However, to make the over-zealous - and sadly typical - leap of misplaced faith that the dog was so named as a deliberate slur against black people, likening them in some way to animals, is ironically archetypal of the very phrenetic and ill-advised political correctness discussed in this thread. I suppose you'd have been equally eager to leap for the cudgels if Gibson had had a Staffordshire Bull Terrier called Whitey?
: : : Q: "Did this bother
: : : A: No, not a lot but I did think it silly
: : : Q: "Is this political
correctness? If the dog's name was "stupid English cunt" should they speak that
on a movie or TV screen?"
: : : A: I've heard worse but this is hardly the point
: : : Q: "Is this a film suitable for all viewers?"
: : : A: This is an excellent film suitable for all viewers of all ages.
: : : Q: "If it is,
is it necessary or even important for the dog's name to be pronounced?"
: : : A: It didn't really matter that the dogs name was not spoken in the cut version but it's ridiculous that in a 50 year old film anybody should consider this kind of Political Correctness.
: : : Q: "Is it appropriate to portray to children
who may watch the film and may not understand the differences in attitudes over
the last very few decades, the concept that to white people, blacks can be likened
to animals and that blacks, as a generic people, are no better than dogs?"
: : : A: In the context of the film there is not the faintest possibility that anyone, other than a complete moron with a chip on his shoulder the size of a giant redwood, would make a connection between the dog's name and any group of people.
: Q: "Would you name your dog Nigger and why or why not?"
: : : A: I don't have a dog but if I had I might call him nigger, why not? I might also call him Rover, or Clinton, or Blair or even Margaret - if he was gay. After all it's a dog we're talking about here.
: : : Furthermore, just because a bunch of racists Americans mistreated their fellow citizens of African descent for a hundred years or more and only reluctantly stopped overt discrimination about 40 years ago, does not mean that the rest of the world has to buy into their guilt trip.
: : How many makes a "bunch"?
: : Fellow citizens? At that time (slavery), they were not.
: : We had many deaths in our Civil War to stop slavery. Have you had a civil war? Have you stopped discrimination? "their guilt trip", Guilt? We did stop and proud of it. Our younger generations are losing the memories of the problems. Unfortunately, our "low-end" politicians and our black population keep bringing it all up again. Not our masses. You are right on one thing, you do not have to "buy into anything". And don't you have guilt about anything?
: : Judge not, lest ye be judged.
: It's clear you're not 'big' on history but a few facts might help:
: 1. "A bunch", why that's just an expression and can mean as many as you say it means.
: 2. Yes we had a civil war about 200 years before the American Civil war.
: 3. We, the British, abolished slavery by act of Parliament; the bill passed all its stages and became law on 25th March 1807. When did the US free its slaves?
: There have been many laws passed since that date to remove the last vestiges of racial discrimination and they appear to have had the desired effect. It's always a bad plan to tackle a problem like racial discrimination with the band-aid of mindlessly stupid political correctness as this solves absolutely nothing in the long run and makes all concerned appear ridiculous.
Still you are judging. And that makes for dislike among men and women of any country, of any race.