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  #51  
Old 07-31-2019, 12:27 PM
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I wouldn't defend it any more than I would defend the founding fathers owning slaves.

As a general rule though I tend to give people a grace period of 5 to 10 years (from the present) on anything they say. Not based on standards of the past, but possibility of self reform. I believe in redemption and will give him the benefit of the doubt that if, somehow, he was alive today, he would apologize for and disavow those statements.
  #52  
Old 07-31-2019, 12:27 PM
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But it's exactly that view that Reagan was espousing in this context - that (White) American foreign policy should hold sway over the desires of (Black) African countries on the China/Taiwan issue.
Black African countries were far from unanimous on the issue -- in fact they were split roughly half and half. A different and more charitable interpretation of the same thing is that Reagan -- along with most conservatives of the time and today -- greatly disliked the influence that small, poor, underdeveloped countries had in the UN, where in the General Assembly each such country was a peer of the US with an equal vote. What put the vote on the China/Taiwan issue over the top with the required two-thirds majority was not the (non-existent) unanimity of the African vote, but the vote of most of the civilized world.
  #53  
Old 07-31-2019, 12:32 PM
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Black African countries were far from unanimous on the issue -- in fact they were split roughly half and half.
It wasn't the House Diplomats Reagan was railing against. Just the Field ones. He wasn't complaining about any of the developed countries to Nixon either. Why might that be?

Last edited by MrDibble; 07-31-2019 at 12:32 PM.
  #54  
Old 07-31-2019, 12:32 PM
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I agree that we should not fall into the trap of engaging in literalism, yet that's exactly what you appear to be doing in asserting a "plain meaning".
Uh, no, you don't agree with that first thing, since it's not what I said. I'm all about the "plain meaning."

Well, that's not entirely true. Obviously a white supremacist isn't talking about the color white.
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You simply cannot infer the meaning of an idiomatic expression from the literal meanings of its individual words. An "accessible entrance" is not the opposite of an "inaccessible entrance" that only birds can get into -- it's specifically a building entrance that accommodates disabled people. "Affordable housing" is not the opposite of housing that no one can afford, it's low-income housing. And the term "white supremacist" does not refer to someone who merely thinks white people are superior to non-whites -- that's just plain run-of-the-mill racism; it refers to an entire hateful ideology closely related to neo-Nazism that seeks to establish the white race as the exclusive owners of political and social power.
You just made that up. That's not the definition of "white supremacy" used anywhere. Go look up some definitions, and you'll see that what I've said is broadly in keeping with definitions of "white supremacy." While you'll find some sites that talk about something more in keeping with what you've said, they tend to list that as a secondary or tertiary definition.

Whining about how a person uses a primary definition for a term instead of a secondary definition is always petty bullshit. When you do it to distract from some nasty bigotry, it looks a little less petty but a lot more suspicious. Check your shit here.
  #55  
Old 07-31-2019, 12:37 PM
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Black African countries were far from unanimous on the issue -- in fact they were split roughly half and half. A different and more charitable interpretation of the same thing is that Reagan -- along with most conservatives of the time and today -- greatly disliked the influence that small, poor, underdeveloped countries had in the UN, where in the General Assembly each such country was a peer of the US with an equal vote. What put the vote on the China/Taiwan issue over the top with the required two-thirds majority was not the (non-existent) unanimity of the African vote, but the vote of most of the civilized world.
And that's precisely why quotes like this are important: to show that your "charitable" interpretation is bullshit. When someone is calling black Africans "monkeys," you don't need to stretch to figure out why that person opposes putting sanctions on racist white Africans.
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Old 07-31-2019, 12:41 PM
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Naah, he wasn't maligned enough.

Bullshit. There's a lot more than that.
Are you disputing any of the facts I cited? Like Reagan's Executive Order 12352 (1985) imposing sanctions on South Africa, or the appointment of Edward Perkins as the first black ambassador to South Africa in 1986? Some of the things you're citing there seem to overlook the balance Reagan was trying to achieve between what he saw as the threat of communism in SA vs. supporting the apartheid regime, and others are just citing the unprincipled actions of the GOP, who were racist hypocrites then much as they are today.
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Old 07-31-2019, 12:54 PM
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You just made that up. That's not the definition of "white supremacy" used anywhere. Go look up some definitions, and you'll see that what I've said is broadly in keeping with definitions of "white supremacy."
I actually did look up some definitions.
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Originally Posted by Merriam Webster
Definition of white supremacist
: a person who believes that the white race is inherently superior to other races and that white people should have control over people of other races
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Originally Posted by dictionary.com
white supremacy
noun
the belief, theory, or doctrine that white people are inherently superior to people from all other racial groups, especially black people, and are therefore rightfully the dominant group in any society.
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Originally Posted by Wikipedia
White supremacy or white supremacism is the racist belief that white people are superior to people of other races and therefore should be dominant over them.
I'm seeing two key ideas: (1) inherent superiority, and (2) dominance/control. So I'm willing to accept those as the defining elements of white supremicism.
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Old 07-31-2019, 12:57 PM
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You just made that up. That's not the definition of "white supremacy" used anywhere. Go look up some definitions, and you'll see that what I've said is broadly in keeping with definitions of "white supremacy." While you'll find some sites that talk about something more in keeping with what you've said, they tend to list that as a secondary or tertiary definition.
Well, I "made it up" in the sense that they are my own words, however it fits with how it's generally described. The definition you seem to prefer as "plain meaning" is incomplete, in that by itself it's synonymous with plain racism, whereas "white supremacy" has much deeper and more insidious nuances. From Wikipedia, bolding mine on the important bits:
White supremacy or white supremacism is the racist belief that white people are superior to people of other races and therefore should be dominant over them.

... The term is also typically used to describe a political ideology that perpetuates and maintains the social, political, historical, or institutional domination by white people.
Since one can be racist without believing in the Nazi "master race" concept and the subjugation of minorities (by violent means if necessary), there is a very substantial difference between white supremacy (which to me has always had strong political overtones) and everyday racism, which may just be the bigoted belief that a black neighbor is not as desirable as a white one.
  #59  
Old 07-31-2019, 01:03 PM
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Are you disputing any of the facts I cited?
Nope. Are you disputing any facts in the articles I cited?
  #60  
Old 07-31-2019, 01:29 PM
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I will never vote for Ronald Reagan again!!!

Anyone else remember LBJ's favorite saying about black Americans? (though he liked to use another word to refer to them) "All those n*****s want is a loose pair of shoes, a tight piece of ass and a warm place to take a shit."
In case no one has commented on this yet, no, I don't remember LBJ saying it.

But I do remember Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz saying it.
  #61  
Old 07-31-2019, 01:32 PM
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Since one can be racist without believing in the Nazi "master race" concept and the subjugation of minorities (by violent means if necessary), there is a very substantial difference between white supremacy (which to me has always had strong political overtones) and everyday racism, which may just be the bigoted belief that a black neighbor is not as desirable as a white one.
More examples of the difference in our usage of these words. Here are some examples in my opinion and usage:

Racist (but NOT white supremacist): "I'm going to welcome my new black neighbors with some hip-hop music, some fried chicken, and some watermelon!"

White supremacist (but NOT neo-Nazi/Nazi): "I don't like that my new neighbors are black and I'd prefer if they left, and I may vote for policies that reduce the chances of more black people in my neighborhood."

Neo-Nazi/Nazi: "I'm going to take violent and threatening action so that my new black neighbors want to move away from this neighborhood."

And it can get even worse, obviously -- from threats to deadly violence.

I think Reagan's words in the OP fall squarely into the 2nd category.
  #62  
Old 07-31-2019, 01:39 PM
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Nope. Are you disputing any facts in the articles I cited?
So any theories as to why the two sets of facts are in contradiction? I tried to reconcile the contradiction in the previous post. To repeat: Some of the things you're citing there seem to overlook the balance Reagan was trying to achieve between what he saw as the threat of communism in SA vs. supporting the apartheid regime, and others are just citing the unprincipled actions of the GOP, who were racist hypocrites then much as they are today.

In any case, my original and primary argument isn't about whether Reagan was a racist, as he probably was, at least by today's standards. It's that there's no evidence he was a white supremacist. The apartheid regime certainly was, but to the extent that Reagan's policies sometimes seemed supportive, there were non-racist political reasons for them, as misguided as they may have been.
  #63  
Old 07-31-2019, 01:50 PM
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Well, I "made it up" in the sense that they are my own words, however it fits with how it's generally described.

...

Since one can be racist without believing in the Nazi "master race" concept and the subjugation of minorities (by violent means if necessary), there is a very substantial difference between white supremacy (which to me has always had strong political overtones) and everyday racism, which may just be the bigoted belief that a black neighbor is not as desirable as a white one.
I'm realizing that, as contemptible as I find the time-honored tradition of hijacking conversations about bigotry with fussy pedantic bickering over definitions, I'm aiding in the distraction by engaging with you. I need to knock that shit off, so I'm done with you on this contemptible practice.
  #64  
Old 07-31-2019, 02:19 PM
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I'm realizing that, as contemptible as I find the time-honored tradition of hijacking conversations about bigotry with fussy pedantic bickering over definitions, I'm aiding in the distraction by engaging with you. I need to knock that shit off, so I'm done with you on this contemptible practice.
I see. So you believe that it's "contemptible" to insist that words actually have meaning. But it's not contemptible at all -- in fact, perfectly OK -- to accuse someone of being a white supremacist -- in effect, a murderous neo-Nazi of the kind that appeared in Charlottesville in 2017 bearing swastikas and Nazi and Confederate flags -- just because that someone called a black person a derogatory name?

And you justify this by choosing to define "white supremacist" in your own special way, which as others have noted, is not the way it's used in the English language as spoken today. OK, fine, but that remarkable attitude defeats the purpose of language and all semblance of logic and makes it impossible to have meaningful conversations about racism.
  #65  
Old 07-31-2019, 02:38 PM
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So done.
  #66  
Old 07-31-2019, 02:47 PM
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More examples of the difference in our usage of these words. Here are some examples in my opinion and usage:

Racist (but NOT white supremacist): "I'm going to welcome my new black neighbors with some hip-hop music, some fried chicken, and some watermelon!"

White supremacist (but NOT neo-Nazi/Nazi): "I don't like that my new neighbors are black and I'd prefer if they left, and I may vote for policies that reduce the chances of more black people in my neighborhood."

Neo-Nazi/Nazi: "I'm going to take violent and threatening action so that my new black neighbors want to move away from this neighborhood."

And it can get even worse, obviously -- from threats to deadly violence.

I think Reagan's words in the OP fall squarely into the 2nd category.

I think this is where you are incorrect. Your first example is not racist at all. It is likely ignorant and culturally unaware, but do you have a cite that such behavior is racist?

Your second category is what I would call "racist."

I think there is some definitional creep in your chosen definitions.

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I see. So you believe that it's "contemptible" to insist that words actually have meaning. But it's not contemptible at all -- in fact, perfectly OK -- to accuse someone of being a white supremacist -- in effect, a murderous neo-Nazi of the kind that appeared in Charlottesville in 2017 bearing swastikas and Nazi and Confederate flags -- just because that someone called a black person a derogatory name?

And you justify this by choosing to define "white supremacist" in your own special way, which as others have noted, is not the way it's used in the English language as spoken today. OK, fine, but that remarkable attitude defeats the purpose of language and all semblance of logic and makes it impossible to have meaningful conversations about racism.
Did you wake up and take conservative pills this morning?
  #67  
Old 07-31-2019, 03:03 PM
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I think this is where you are incorrect. Your first example is not racist at all. It is likely ignorant and culturally unaware, but do you have a cite that such behavior is racist?
Assuming what people like because of the color of their skin is racist, yes. Stereotypes are racist.
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  #68  
Old 07-31-2019, 03:15 PM
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Assuming what people like because of the color of their skin is racist, yes. Stereotypes are racist.
Racism implies a believe in a superiority or higher status of one's own race. If I think blacks are dumber than whites, that is racism. If I serve my Italian guests pasta, or my UK guest a shepherd's pie on the culturally unaware belief that those people always like certain foods, I don't hate them nor am I "racist" towards them. That's silly. That deprives the word of any meaning.

Your side is doing the bait and switch here. Applying new definitions to words that have a previously understood different meaning and using the new definition which implies harsher behavior to the person the label is applied to.
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Old 07-31-2019, 03:19 PM
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Racism implies a believe in a superiority or higher status of one's own race. If I think blacks are dumber than whites, that is racism. If I serve my Italian guests pasta, or my UK guest a shepherd's pie on the culturally unaware belief that those people always like certain foods, I don't hate them nor am I "racist" towards them. That's silly. That deprives the word of any meaning.

Your side is doing the bait and switch here. Applying new definitions to words that have a previously understood different meaning and using the new definition which implies harsher behavior to the person the label is applied to.
No this is not true. You are redefining the term. Making assumptions about people based only on the color of their skin is racism. Your side is trying to make that ok by redefining racism so narrowly that you can claim almost anything said isn't racist unless an actual slur is used. I'm using the term the way it has always been used. What the right is doing is what is new. "Go back to where you came from" is obviously racist, but they are trying to find a way to defend stuff like that by reducing the term racist to mean only what they want it to be and then howling about how everything is racist these days. No, racist stuff is and always has been racist, and will continue to be so.
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Last edited by Airbeck; 07-31-2019 at 03:23 PM.
  #70  
Old 07-31-2019, 03:35 PM
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Racism implies a believe in a superiority or higher status of one's own race. If I think blacks are dumber than whites, that is racism. If I serve my Italian guests pasta, or my UK guest a shepherd's pie on the culturally unaware belief that those people always like certain foods, I don't hate them nor am I "racist" towards them. That's silly. That deprives the word of any meaning.



Your side is doing the bait and switch here. Applying new definitions to words that have a previously understood different meaning and using the new definition which implies harsher behavior to the person the label is applied to.
Who said anything about hate? I think the hypothetical hip hop, watermelon and fried chicken neighbor is probably a nice guy trying to be friendly to his new neighbors, but racists can be nice and friendly, even to black people. If you think racism requires hate, then you're missing the vast majority of racist interactions that result in harm to children.
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Old 07-31-2019, 03:39 PM
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If I may butt in -

Just IMHO, but I think that the difference between racism and white supremacy is that of belief versus action. A racist believes that his race is better than other races, but a supremacist actually does things to hurt other races. In other words, white supremacy is applied racism.
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Old 07-31-2019, 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by iiandyiiii View Post
More examples of the difference in our usage of these words. Here are some examples in my opinion and usage:

Racist (but NOT white supremacist): "I'm going to welcome my new black neighbors with some hip-hop music, some fried chicken, and some watermelon!"

White supremacist (but NOT neo-Nazi/Nazi): "I don't like that my new neighbors are black and I'd prefer if they left, and I may vote for policies that reduce the chances of more black people in my neighborhood."

Neo-Nazi/Nazi: "I'm going to take violent and threatening action so that my new black neighbors want to move away from this neighborhood."
I agree with immediately previous poster there's definition creep there as one problem. The first example is somebody stereotyping, it's not even '[racially] prejudiced' or 'racially biased' which is what the second example would have been called not long ago. 'Racist' not that long ago could be interpreted to mean close to the same thing as 'white supremacist', belief in a social order based on ranking races, because one was categorically superior to others, WS makes explicit which one. But in recent years 'racist' has been applied more and more loosely and sloppily to cases which are really just racial prejudice. So now WS is being invoked to mean what 'racist' used to. But it needs to have the element of belief about social policy or organization.

Conscious insults based on race (Reagan recording) are an example of racial prejudice. It isn't a stretch in sloppy modern English usage to call it 'racist'. But trying to call it 'white supremacist' is just making things more confusing, whether the definition has been changed, or it's a reference to theorizing by Reagan about the proper social order that's not explicit in the comments which have been publicized. The meaning of 'racism' has become distorted, but that it isn't a good reason to keep distorting new terms.

IOW this thread is misnamed: the comments were racially biased, or by common sloppy current usage 'racist', but not 'white supremacist' as far as any evidence on that tape. It doesn't make the comments acceptable of course.

And besides definition creep, there is no particular gradation between 'white supremacist' and 'neo Nazi' on a scale of views toward black people. The Nazi's themselves believed in the superiority of 'Aryans' from whom they excluded many basically 'white' groups and committed the great majority of their atrocities against those groups (European Jews, Slavic peoples, Roma, etc). In terms of their actual crimes, 1930's-40's Nazi views of people of Sub-Saharan African descent were a relative footnote*.

To the limited extent true neo-Nazi's actually exist now they have a variety of views which might or might not be focused on blacks, depending which country the neo-Nazi's live among other things. There's no valid basis to make 'neo-Nazi' a hash mark on a scale of hostility to blacks, or a distinct theory of how society should be organized as compared to white supremacists.

*the German Army captured thousands of Senegalese soldiers of the French Army in the 1940 campaign. Hundreds of them were murdered at random, but most were treated more or less in accordance with the Geneva Conventions as Western Allied prisoners usually were by the Germans, but Soviet prisoners seldom were.

Last edited by Corry El; 07-31-2019 at 03:48 PM.
  #73  
Old 07-31-2019, 03:45 PM
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Racism != White Supremacy

I agree with wolfpup- at this rate, we are robbing words of any and all meaning.

If my neighbor thinks that white people should have power over people of any other color, would be downright OFFENDED at the very idea of even the "lowliest" of white men having to work for/report to a colored supervisor... that dude is obviously a white supremacist. He believes that the natural order of things should have white people at the top of the hierarchy.

If my other neighbor thinks that blacks are lazy violent thugs, and obviously like to live that way because they are all staying in the ghettos instead of just packing up and moving away, he's just a garden variety racist.

They are both shitheads, but there is definitely a difference between the two.

Neighbor B might even cheerfully report to a black supervisor, spend his after work time with a Mexican coworker, and think that they are the exception to his stereotyped views... he is still racist, but doesn't necessarily believe he has some inherent right to dominate those of a different color, unlike Neighbor A.
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Old 07-31-2019, 03:57 PM
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Racism != White Supremacy

I agree with wolfpup- at this rate, we are robbing words of any and all meaning.

If my neighbor thinks that white people should have power over people of any other color, would be downright OFFENDED at the very idea of even the "lowliest" of white men having to work for/report to a colored supervisor... that dude is obviously a white supremacist. He believes that the natural order of things should have white people at the top of the hierarchy.

If my other neighbor thinks that blacks are lazy violent thugs, and obviously like to live that way because they are all staying in the ghettos instead of just packing up and moving away, he's just a garden variety racist.

They are both shitheads, but there is definitely a difference between the two.

Neighbor B might even cheerfully report to a black supervisor, spend his after work time with a Mexican coworker, and think that they are the exception to his stereotyped views... he is still racist, but doesn't necessarily believe he has some inherent right to dominate those of a different color, unlike Neighbor A.
I agree with this. But if he is so inept that he thinks he is doing a nice thing by bringing his Mexican friend tacos for lunch, that fact alone does not make him a racist.
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Old 07-31-2019, 04:27 PM
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Racism implies a believe in a superiority or higher status of one's own race. If I think blacks are dumber than whites, that is racism. If I serve my Italian guests pasta, or my UK guest a shepherd's pie on the culturally unaware belief that those people always like certain foods, I don't hate them nor am I "racist" towards them. That's silly. That deprives the word of any meaning.
No, it means assuming a person has particular attributes based solely on their apparent race. That can be, "Blacks are dumb." It can also be, "Asians are good at math."

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Your side is doing the bait and switch here. Applying new definitions to words that have a previously understood different meaning and using the new definition which implies harsher behavior to the person the label is applied to.
This is hardly a "new" definition. "Black people like fried chicken and watermelon," has been considered a racist trope for as long as I've been alive.
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Old 07-31-2019, 04:39 PM
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[quoted from Reagan]
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“To see those, those monkeys from those African countries—damn them, they’re still uncomfortable wearing shoes!”

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the "monkeys" comment seems pretty incriminating at first glance. OTOH, a more charitable interpretation of those comments is that Reagan was extremely critical of what he saw as the undue influence in the UN of underdeveloped (i.e.- "backward" or "uncivilized") African countries who were able to override the foreign policy goals of the US, and that this was the main target of his attacks. Now, I happen to think that Reagan was wrong about practically everything, including his disparagement of the UN, but nevertheless this appears to be what he was saying. Do you think Reagan would have referred to educated middle-class African-Americans as "monkeys"?
Why not? He'd just referred to educated upper-class Africans as monkeys. He's talking about the UN delegates.

Not to mention that crack about not wearing shoes, as if nobody in Africa had worn any until Europeans told them they had to.
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Old 07-31-2019, 04:45 PM
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At least he wanted to tear down walls.
  #78  
Old 07-31-2019, 04:59 PM
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Why not? He'd just referred to educated upper-class Africans as monkeys. He's talking about the UN delegates.
Once again I'm in the very uncomfortable position of seeming to defend Reagan in the interest of fairness in this specific case. But this doesn't actually tell us anything about how he would regard educated African-Americans, because one presumes that he thought the UN delegates from these underdeveloped countries were a product of their putatively "primitive" culture. If Reagan thought African-Americans were no better than "monkeys", why did he appoint Edward Perkins as the first black ambassador to South Africa, which totally enraged the apartheid government over there at the time?

Furthermore, I would suggest the even the highest level diplomats and leaders from backwards countries can and do reflect the prevailing and often barbaric culture -- cite.
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Old 07-31-2019, 05:13 PM
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Well, I "made it up" in the sense that they are my own words, however it fits with how it's generally described. The definition you seem to prefer as "plain meaning" is incomplete, in that by itself it's synonymous with plain racism, whereas "white supremacy" has much deeper and more insidious nuances. From Wikipedia, bolding mine on the important bits:
White supremacy or white supremacism is the racist belief that white people are superior to people of other races and therefore should be dominant over them.

... The term is also typically used to describe a political ideology that perpetuates and maintains the social, political, historical, or institutional domination by white people.
We're not necessarily objecting to your definition or description above, but...

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Since one can be racist without believing in the Nazi "master race" concept and the subjugation of minorities (by violent means if necessary), there is a very substantial difference between white supremacy (which to me has always had strong political overtones) and everyday racism, which may just be the bigoted belief that a black neighbor is not as desirable as a white one.
I know you're attempting to argue that someone can be a racist and yet not explicitly subscribe to racist ideology, but that is truly a distinction without a difference. Racism is the belief that members of another race are somehow inferior to members of the race one identifies with. And if someone is racist and white, then it follows that their racism is the inherent belief in the supremacy of the white race. This still allows for calibrating of such attitudes toward different ethnic groups. A white supremacist can on one hand be vehemently racist toward Black people and less so toward Asians, or vice versa provided that he/she ultimately believes in the superiority of the white race. Some specific examples are admittedly more complicated to "litigate" socially and politically.
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Old 07-31-2019, 05:24 PM
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If Reagan thought African-Americans were no better than "monkeys", why did he appoint Edward Perkins as the first black ambassador to South Africa, which totally enraged the apartheid government over there at the time?
https://www.nytimes.com/1986/10/01/w...th-africa.html

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President Reagan, trying to win Senate support for his veto of South African sanctions legislation, today appointed Edward J. Perkins, a veteran black diplomat, as the new Ambassador to Pretoria.

In addition, Secretary of State George P. Shultz traveled to Capitol Hill and told a group of Republican Senators that if the veto is overridden, his ability to negotiate with Soviet leaders at the meeting in Iceland in two weeks would be undermined.
The handful of times that Reagan did anything seemingly in recognition of African Americans it was to get them to shut up. He opposed the Martin Luther King Jr holiday, even going so far as to write the New Hampshire governor an apology letter for signing it into law.

https://www.nytimes.com/1983/10/22/u...disclosed.html

Quote:
President Reagan believes that sentiment for a Federal holiday for the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is ''based on an image, not reality,'' according to a letter he wrote to former Gov. Meldrim Thomson Jr. of New Hampshire.
Quote:
Today, before arriving here for a golfing weekend, Mr. Reagan telephoned Dr. King's widow, Coretta Scott King, to apologize for any misunderstanding of his remark Wednesday that ''we will know in about 35 years'' whether Dr. King had communist sympathies.
If you're uncomfortable defending Reagan's language, maybe you can, you know, stop defending it. The language released in the recording with Nixon is pretty consistent with Reagan's rhetoric and political activity throughout his entire life.
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Old 07-31-2019, 05:29 PM
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I know you're attempting to argue that someone can be a racist and yet not explicitly subscribe to racist ideology, but that is truly a distinction without a difference. Racism is the belief that members of another race are somehow inferior to members of the race one identifies with. And if someone is racist and white, then it follows that their racism is the inherent belief in the supremacy of the white race.
I don't think that follows. I think actions and systems can be racist as well (without making participants in them racists). For instance, a police officer who self-identifies as black but is tougher on black civilians than on white civilians probably doesn't think white people are superior but is nonetheless engaging in racist behavior against black people.
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Old 07-31-2019, 05:55 PM
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If you're uncomfortable defending Reagan's language, maybe you can, you know, stop defending it. The language released in the recording with Nixon is pretty consistent with Reagan's rhetoric and political activity throughout his entire life.
Wait, are you under the impression I didn't think Reagan was a racist? I thought I was pretty clear on that point, and my record on this board puts me at the diametric opposite of Reagan-supporting types. I have no interest in "defending" him, but I do have an interest in defending the proper use of language, especially terms like "white supremacist" that are highly loaded. I'm also interested in defending an accurate historical record, even with regard to people I greatly disliked. I'm sure that the Perkins appointment was politically motivated, as all such appointment always are. My position here all along was simply that Reagan was not a white supremacist according to common definitions and available evidence, and that Reagan's foreign policies -- with regard to South Africa and everything else -- were heavily influenced by his fanatical anti-communist ideology above all.
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Old 07-31-2019, 06:04 PM
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I don't think that follows. I think actions and systems can be racist as well (without making participants in them racists). For instance, a police officer who self-identifies as black but is tougher on black civilians than on white civilians probably doesn't think white people are superior but is nonetheless engaging in racist behavior against black people.
I think we're venturing off into imagination-land with this hypothetical, but no, even in this case, the black officer who hypothetically treats black civilians worse isn't engaging in racist behavior unless there is something that establishes racist intent. That's the whole point of racism: words and actions manifest racist intent.
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Old 07-31-2019, 06:17 PM
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On Racism vs White Supremacy

Here is the problem: At Thesaurus.com, I see that "superiority" is a synonym of "supremacy".* If one accepts that racism necessarily includes the belief that one race is superior to the other, as I do, then you could make the argument that racism = white supremacy. Now, as wolfpup has pointed out, the most common definition of white supremacy requires that the white race be dominant over the other race. In this case, it is possible to be a straight up racist, while having no particular opinion on one race dominating the other, and in fact being of the opinion that you want nothing at all to do with them, dominating or otherwise. In this case racism does not equal white supremacy. Therefore, whomever coined the term "white supremacy" should have used a different word for "supremacy", and we would be having this discussion in the first place!

* As we all know, "synonym" can mean exactly the same, or just very, very close to the same. In this case, the above argument would have to take this into account and be reworded somewhat. I leave this as an exercise for the reader.
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Old 07-31-2019, 06:19 PM
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. . . the black officer who hypothetically treats black civilians worse isn't engaging in racist behavior unless there is something that establishes racist intent. That's the whole point of racism: words and actions manifest racist intent.
Is not discrimination based on race, racist? And intentionally so?
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Old 07-31-2019, 06:20 PM
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There's a difference between being a racist and having a tendency to shoot off one's mouth.
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Old 07-31-2019, 06:22 PM
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I think we're venturing off into imagination-land with this hypothetical, but no, even in this case, the black officer who hypothetically treats black civilians worse isn't engaging in racist behavior unless there is something that establishes racist intent. That's the whole point of racism: words and actions manifest racist intent.
On the contrary, a lot of folks interested in fighting social inequality have taken to the mantra, It's not about intent, it's about impact.

This is really important, because of a variety of reasons:

1) A person who's being screwed over isn't less screwed-over if the intent of the screwer is benign. They generally want the effect on them to change.
2) People get super defensive about their intent. You don't know me! they shout to Jerry Springer, and to people who point out that their words/deeds are racist.
3) Indeed, we don't have a window into anyone's deepest soul; we can't determine intent. But we for sure can determine impact.
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Old 07-31-2019, 06:24 PM
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I do have an interest in defending the proper use of language
and we are all just THRILLED that you've ridden that hobby horse straight into this thread about something else, instead of starting a new thread about how IMPORTANT it is that language be DEFENDED by people like you!

Edit: In the interest of proper use of language, I should say "hobby unicorn," because horses are real.

Last edited by Left Hand of Dorkness; 07-31-2019 at 06:27 PM.
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Old 07-31-2019, 07:30 PM
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and we are all just THRILLED that you've ridden that hobby horse straight into this thread about something else, instead of starting a new thread about how IMPORTANT it is that language be DEFENDED by people like you!
Well, actually, you seem to be the only one getting thrills out of this, or at least, the only one reacting with a ridiculously hyperactive tantrum to an argument that you don't seem to agree with. Turns out, the fact that words have meaning is not actually just a personal opinon of mine, it's kind of the basis of all language. I really don't understand why it has to be a subject of such intense conflict for you either in this thread or anywhere else.
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Old 07-31-2019, 08:50 PM
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Reagan and the cold war was a time of growth for American exceptionalism which, while not really racist, is the worst kind of xenophobia there is. Anything from "don't drink the water" to "have ransom money ready" when considering foreign travel.

And no, I don't think there was racism or supremacism in Reagan's statements. Just rash word of an ex-actor.
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:03 PM
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Is not discrimination based on race, racist? And intentionally so?
Like I said, the statement I was responding to was venturing off into imagination land: a black officer is "racist" against his own people.

Like how fucking stupid is that?
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:05 PM
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On Racism vs White Supremacy

Here is the problem: At Thesaurus.com, I see that "superiority" is a synonym of "supremacy".* If one accepts that racism necessarily includes the belief that one race is superior to the other, as I do, then you could make the argument that racism = white supremacy. Now, as wolfpup has pointed out, the most common definition of white supremacy requires that the white race be dominant over the other race. In this case, it is possible to be a straight up racist, while having no particular opinion on one race dominating the other, and in fact being of the opinion that you want nothing at all to do with them, dominating or otherwise. In this case racism does not equal white supremacy. Therefore, whomever coined the term "white supremacy" should have used a different word for "supremacy", and we would be having this discussion in the first place!

* As we all know, "synonym" can mean exactly the same, or just very, very close to the same. In this case, the above argument would have to take this into account and be reworded somewhat. I leave this as an exercise for the reader.
Pretty much this ^

The terms are synonymous, which may or may not mean they're exactly the same thing, but close enough. If you say a Donald Trump is a racist, they'll assume you mean he's a white supremacist, and vice versa.
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:22 PM
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Like I said, the statement I was responding to was venturing off into imagination land: a black officer is "racist" against his own people.

Like how fucking stupid is that?
Are you saying that it's stupid to be prejudiced against your own in-group? Or are you saying it's stupid to think that's it's possible for a person to be prejudiced against their own in-group?
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:23 PM
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And no, I don't think there was racism or supremacism in Reagan's statements. Just rash word of an ex-actor.
What was “rash” about Reagan’s words? It was responded to with a hearty laugh, and didn’t come to light until well after his death.

More germane to this thread, is there a context in which a person can refer to another person as a monkey that YOU would perceive as racist? What would it be?
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:31 PM
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Racist is not to give people the right to vote, or equal job opportunities, because you think they're monkeys and say it in a matter of fact way. Calling people you hate monkeys is a different thing. I'd call someone who pisses me off that (or several of them.)
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:35 PM
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Racist is not to give people the right to vote, or equal job opportunities, because you think they're monkeys and say it in a matter of fact way.
Yes, that's racist, in the same way that elephants are mammals. If you turn around and say, well, obviously yaks aren't mammals, because elephants are mammals, you've got some basic issues with your categorization scheme.

And if you turn around and consider private expressions of dehumanizing racial stereotypes not racist, because they're not denying folks the right to vote, you've got the exact same issues.
Quote:
Calling people you hate monkeys is a different thing. I'd call someone who pisses me off that (or several of them.)
Come on. If you referred to someone who pissed you off using a string of stereotypes that had been part of an ideology that had violently oppressed those folks for centuries, that's just a little different from saying, "well, what's a good totally random insult I could use against them! Hmm, hmm, just randomly I'm choosing monkeys."

Last edited by Left Hand of Dorkness; 07-31-2019 at 09:36 PM.
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:40 PM
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Monkeys do look ridiculous and oftentimes I see humans who fit the description, whether by looks or action. It's a low blow by any rating and you don't tell it to someone in the face, unless you're ready to draw. And it's been used on so many nationalities and ethnic groups that I don't believe it could be descriptive of just one victimized group.

Reagan could have chosen to call them "clowns and midgets" and he'll still come out bad.

Last edited by Rayks Marcial; 07-31-2019 at 09:45 PM.
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:44 PM
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Monkeys do look ridiculous and oftentimes I see humans who fit the description, whether by looks or action. It's a low blow by any rating and you don't tell it to someone in the face, unless you're ready to draw. And it's been used on so many nationalities and ethnic groups that I don't believe it could be a descriptive of just one victimized group.
Reread what he said:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reagan
To see those, those monkeys from those African countries—damn them, they’re still uncomfortable wearing shoes
You're seriously claiming that's just him saying they look funny?
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:47 PM
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Sorry, not far from the Reagan I knew in life. As Time used to put it, "Something he says or does while he's in the office."
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:53 PM
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Sorry, not far from the Reagan I knew in life. As Time used to put it, "Something he says or does while he's in the office."
No idea what you're apologizing for, or what you mean. If you're saying that he liked to make racist jokes in private, I find that plausible, but if you're saying something else, no idea what it means.
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