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(Fox News)   The U.S. State Department tells employees to stop using common phrases such as "hold down the fort" and "rule of thumb" because they are culturally and racially insensitive   (foxnews.com) divider line 209
    More: Asinine, State Department, U.S., State Department tells  
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8292 clicks; posted to Main » on 31 Aug 2012 at 2:18 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-08-31 06:59:43 AM
He should have inveighed against "at the end of the day" and "at this point in time" instead.
 
2012-08-31 07:03:23 AM

gameshowhost: AverageAmericanGuy: Johnny Bananapeel: Nobody ever mentions the obvious "keep your cotton pickin' hands off..." when they list these sorts of offensive phrases. 

[i.imgur.com image 443x290]

how much more ofendded do you think blakc people can get?

"400 years worth of being treated like shiat" offended. But that's just an estimate.


I suggest they get their sensitive asses over it.
 
2012-08-31 07:12:00 AM

bifford: Quite a lot of popular idioms have unseemly origins. It doesn't matter as long as nobody remembers them. Jesus, why did they have to tell me that "rule of thumb" is linked to wife-beating?


The only origin I remember for has to do with measuring wheat at a mill during the 1500's, and it has to do with checking the quality by pinching it with your finger and thumb. Anything that didn't filter down from the hand was rejected. I remember it basically as a rule of quality control.
 
2012-08-31 07:12:35 AM

Electric_Banana: In Nomine Patri, Et Fili, Et Spiritus Sancti.


Filii. Every good Latin American knows that.
 
2012-08-31 07:21:42 AM
'Hold down the fort'- I often see this phrase used in situations where there is no 'attack' to 'hold the fort' against. It always seemed to me to be more, I dunno- humorous way of saying 'there's nothing happening right now, the biggest issue is that the place might dry up and blow away, so stay here and make sure that doesn't happen'. Kinda like referring to someone leaning an a wall as 'holding up the wall'.
 
2012-08-31 07:23:24 AM
The Dutch get it bad. I have heard it dates from English wars with them. Some of the common ones:

Dutch courage: Drunk
Dutch wife: Long tubular bolster pillow often used in the tropics
Dutch treat: Everyone pays separately
Double Dutch: Confusing language

French get it to:

French leave: Unauthorized leave
French letter: Condom

...and then there are the Greeks
 
2012-08-31 07:27:31 AM
Is "Screwed the pooch" still okay?
 
2012-08-31 07:31:20 AM

Lionel Mandrake: He singled out another phrase, "Going Dutch," as a "negative stereotype portraying the Dutch as cheap."

Being cheap is just one of the many despicable attributes of the Dutch


I thought "Going Dutch" meant you were delightfully progressive and non-sexist.on a date.
 
2012-08-31 07:35:36 AM
Chief Diversity Officer John Robinson: Slob.
 
2012-08-31 07:36:01 AM
I'm forced to wonder, when it comes to political correctness: how many turns of phrase have been banned because someone has actually complained, versus how many are banned because of projections: fear of complaints, rather than any actual documented instances of offense?

I ask, because there's a difference between sensitivity and paranoia, and this difference does in fact cut both ways. What does it say about someone who believes people of other cultures are so hypersensitive that one must walk on eggshells around them and head off every idiom at the pass?
 
2012-08-31 07:37:38 AM

RamboFrog: They can't use those phrases? Honest Injun?


Lord willing and the creek don't rise
 
2012-08-31 07:37:51 AM

Frederf: Insert Sterling Archer talking about idioms.


i.ebayimg.com

Done. But he doesn't seem to be in a talkative mood. Unless you count a clothyard shaft as a conversation.
 
2012-08-31 07:38:55 AM

qualtrough: French get it to:

French leave: Unauthorized leave
French letter: Condom


French Asthma: You can only catch your breath in snatches.
 
2012-08-31 07:39:08 AM

RamboFrog: They can't use those phrases? Honest Injun?


They go on the warpath if you do.
 
2012-08-31 07:40:41 AM
i1253.photobucket.com
So this guy sits in a taxpayer funded BIG GOVT office, collects a large taxpayer funded BIG GOVT paycheck and his job is to dredge up dopey politically incorrect sayings that could offend someone if you explain to them why it should offend them.
 
2012-08-31 07:47:59 AM

Krieghund: The State Department's job is to speak diplomatically. The origins of their words don't matter, what matters is what the people they're speaking to think the word means.

They're going overboard, yes. But it's their job to go overboard with precision in language.


How do you precisely say "FARK OFF, State Department"?
 
2012-08-31 07:52:42 AM
Do please recall that this IS the State Department.

The office of the government that is entirely concerned with DIPLOMACY
 
2012-08-31 07:53:46 AM
Dammit. How did I miss Krieghund
 
2012-08-31 07:57:13 AM
He singled out another phrase, "Going Dutch," as a "negative stereotype portraying the Dutch as cheap."

Being cheap is just one of the many despicable attributes of the Dutch



I didn't realize we had the Anti-Dutch spewing their right wing propaganda on FARK.
Fascists!

2.bp.blogspot.com
 
2012-08-31 08:08:30 AM

OhioKnight: Do please recall that this IS the State Department.

The office of the government that is entirely concerned with DIPLOMACY


Sorry, man, but they are off the reservation, here.
 
2012-08-31 08:08:44 AM
I'm getting a kick and all since I work for the State Department. What is interesting is that I haven't read this memo!

For those of us in te Foreign Service we do get 'cables' (a holdover from when all our official messages were telegrams) about our annual evaluations and to not use cliches...he/she hit the ground running when he/she arrived at post...that sort of thing.
 
2012-08-31 08:11:24 AM

miltonbabbitt: Rule of thumb?

[media.tumblr.com image 500x370]


Came for this.
 
2012-08-31 08:13:19 AM
Anyone with the word "diversity" in their title for a job is a racist asshat and really needs to go.
 
2012-08-31 08:15:58 AM

bifford: Quite a lot of popular idioms have unseemly origins. It doesn't matter as long as nobody remembers them. Jesus, why did they have to tell me that "rule of thumb" is linked to wife-beating?


You prolly don't wanna know that "Good morning Sunshine" was said to slaves working in the field. (Sun would glisten off of sweaty backs, etc)

Too lazy to look for a citation.

People are against this sort of PC thing until something is said about them or their ancestry.
 
2012-08-31 08:16:40 AM
Sounds like they are just"nit picking" .
 
2012-08-31 08:18:45 AM
Fine, then I will use "Don't fark up shiat while I am gone".

/why all Diversity gotta be AA peeps, can I gets me an Indian or Latino up in heah?
 
2012-08-31 08:18:56 AM
www.southernlandscapes.com

Beating around the bush -- can we still use that?
 
2012-08-31 08:20:35 AM
In college I got into an arguement with my entire [reguired] Racism and Sexism class, that the phrase "the pot calling the kettle black" was, in fact, not a racist phrase.

/csb
 
2012-08-31 08:25:20 AM
perhaps I should have taken remedial spelling instead
 
2012-08-31 08:35:02 AM
This is a plus plus good solution.
 
2012-08-31 08:37:12 AM

Badfysh: TwistedFark: Drubell: Don't use sayings or phrases if you're writing things that might be viewed internationally because they're just not going to get it and wonder what the hell you're talking about. Some writer I know actually used "hold down the fort" in an article recently and some British people were asking what this even meant.

I work in Australia and I had a similar issue recently as well - I believe the term I used was something like "level a charge", which evidently is an American idiom.

I had no idea, because... well, being American, it's a common enough phrase.

Isn't it "Levy a charge" or is this something else?


It's "Levi a Claude-Strauss," and it's very offensive to anthropologists.
 
2012-08-31 08:38:10 AM

fusillade762: And "rule of thumb," he wrote, can according to women's activists refer "to an antiquated law, whereby the width of a husband's thumb was the legal size of a switch or rod allowed to beat his wife."

Someone needs to learn how to use the Googles.


That is searchenginist. It implies that Bing is somehow inferior.
 
2012-08-31 08:39:10 AM
FRIT - FARK Racist Identification Thread.

Thanks subby. These are useful tools. The early identification helps avoid stress later in other threads, when I can safely replace:

"omg! Are they serious?! - RAGE"

with

"oh look...it's Submoron #12 agaIn...how quaint."
 
2012-08-31 08:43:46 AM
So is using the term "c*nt hair" wrong too?
I always thought it was an official unit of measurement.
 
2012-08-31 08:45:53 AM
Whew! I'm glad I gave up using the word handicap a long time ago. I find "gimp" much more to the point.
 
2012-08-31 08:50:44 AM

timujin: And now refers to a drink made with a popular Irish beverage. Ferfuxake, people, grow a little skin. "Choose my word carefully" Mr. Robinson? Aight, I'm very carefully calling you a dumbass.


Um, the roll out specifically mentioned the Irish in the ads, and, in Ireland, it's offensive. It's not even a drink most people will order because the name is so offensive. That's 10 kinds of stupid.
 
2012-08-31 08:53:40 AM

timujin: Robinson cited the cautionary tale of Nike rolling out a "Black and Tan" sneaker without realizing the phrase once referred to a group "that committed atrocities against Irish civilians." Nike later apologized.

And now refers to a drink made with a popular Irish beverage. Ferfuxake, people, grow a little skin. "Choose my word carefully" Mr. Robinson? Aight, I'm very carefully calling you a dumbass.


Actually, no, not so much, Not gonna comhment on the broader phenomenon being discussed here, but that particular example is wrong Ordering a black and tan in much of Ireland will get you glared at or just plain ignored.

/And under NO circumstances you EVER order a carbomb by that name.
 
2012-08-31 08:58:49 AM
New rule: Before a word or phrase is prohibited, a member of the group in question has to complain first. 

/You bunch of Neanderthals.
 
2012-08-31 09:15:26 AM
Lock, stock, and barrel-- Going to offend someone as the original meaning is a reference to a gun.
Dutch actually used to refer to Germans, at some point it was shifted to mean people from the Netherlands, originally came from Deutsche. [I am OK with it being used to insult Germans too.]
Ticket scalping--Better drop that one, along with honest injun, Indian giver, on the warpath, and Indian summer.
High on the hog--Said to originate with black slaves who when a pig was slaughtered got the lower less desirable portions while the whites got the loin meat (from the back of the hog).
Sold down the river--Selling of slaves.
Pipe dream--Opium smoking, had racial connotations due to the Chinese running opium dens.
 
2012-08-31 09:25:48 AM
T.S.
 
2012-08-31 09:28:01 AM
I'm still kind of amazed the State Department (primarily responsible for foreign diplomacy) has a chief diversity officer ("chief" suggesting there may be diversity underlings as well). Couldn't we have the State Department devoted to, you know, advancing our interests worldwide via diplomacy rather than concerning itself with being politically correct during watercooler conversations in the hall?
 
2012-08-31 09:28:09 AM

DreamSnipers: Ticket scalping


Why is that bad if it has historical connotations and was something that was used as intimidation? I don't get why Native Americans are offended by it (i don't use it, just want to understand). The people who should be offended are the people whose ancestors were scalped, which includes anybody who came to America or inhabited it. The only thing I can relate to it is if head hurlers was a phrase which I'm not at all offended by.

I basically see the denial of that phrase as a half-ass attempt considering Andrew Jackson is on the twenty dollar bill.
 
2012-08-31 09:31:55 AM

Snarfangel: New rule: Before a word or phrase is prohibited, a member of the group in question has to complain first. 

/You bunch of Neanderthals.


When I was growing up the father of one of my friends told the following joke:

He used to work in the Pentagon (he did, which is part of what made the joke good) and he was on the staff of a general from Minnesota. He used the guys name, but I can't recall it. And when the general was first introducing himself to the staff he said, "I'm from Minnesota and up there we have Sven and Ole jokes, so these two Norwegians, Sven and Ole..." At this point his assistant interrupts him and says, "Sir, I'm afraid you can't tell jokes about a particular ethnic group anymore. Somebody might find it offensive." So the general asks "well, who can I tell jokes about?" The assistant responds that he'll get back to him in a few weeks when a study panel decides. So weeks pass and at a weekly staff meeting the assistant says to the general that the panel has come up with a conclusion. "Sir, you can tell Hittite jokes. They lived in modern Turkey, they died out without leaving modern cultures that really claim them... if you know Hittite jokes you can tell them." The general thanks the assistant and starts the meeting by saying, "So, there were these two Hittites, Sven and Ole...."
 
2012-08-31 09:37:49 AM

Public Savant: (we didn't import our slaves back in the day


Typically you dropped them off in the Caribbean.
 
2012-08-31 09:40:50 AM

gameshowhost: AverageAmericanGuy: Johnny Bananapeel: Nobody ever mentions the obvious "keep your cotton pickin' hands off..." when they list these sorts of offensive phrases. 

[i.imgur.com image 443x290]

how much more ofendded do you think blakc people can get?

"400 years worth of being treated like shiat" offended. But that's just an estimate.


Try being Irish, we have much longer than 400 years.
 
2012-08-31 09:43:24 AM
This guy gets paid for doing this?

It's kind of like the Monty Python 'Government Offices for making Silly Things Up.'

I think it's time to start worrying much less about being 'racially offensive' and more about being 'racially compatible.' A lot of folks don't even know they're 'offending' or being 'offended' until someone like this comes along and tells them.

'Hold down the fort' could also apply to the Spanish, who built forts in every new land they colonized. The 'Rule of Thumb' as I know it, used to be the distance from the first joint of the King's thumb to the tip as a measurement of an inch. The yard was also the length of the monarchs' arm from shoulder to tips of fingers.

It's starting to reach the point where if you open your mouth and speak, you're going to insult some race or religion no matter what you do.

Time for folks to stop being babies.
 
2012-08-31 09:45:48 AM

Girion47: gameshowhost: AverageAmericanGuy: Johnny Bananapeel: Nobody ever mentions the obvious "keep your cotton pickin' hands off..." when they list these sorts of offensive phrases. 

[i.imgur.com image 443x290]

how much more ofendded do you think blakc people can get?

"400 years worth of being treated like shiat" offended. But that's just an estimate.

Try being Irish, we have much longer than 400 years.


You're like the red-headed stepchildren of Europe. You guys got gypped.
 
2012-08-31 09:50:12 AM

This text is now purple: You're like the red-headed stepchildren of Europe. You guys got gypped.


I think people of the Jewish faith got the shiat end of every stick by everybody.
 
2012-08-31 09:50:36 AM

loral: T.S.


Eliot or Venture?
 
2012-08-31 09:51:26 AM
I just read Bill Bryson's "made in America", which discusses various americanisms so I'm getting a kick...

/doesn't address the rule of thumb or fort holding saying unfortunately
 
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