Snigger

An internet game called ‘Slave Tetris’ in which players stack as many Africans as they can into a ship’s hold has been pulled after it caused a furious reaction online.
It was a segment of a wider game called Playing History: Slave Trade aimed at educating people about the horrors of slavery.
The different shaped blocks of classic title Tetris were replaced with emaciated black figures wearing only different coloured shorts.

That really wasn’t going to work out well, was it?

But then here on mainland Europe people aren’t quite as, shall we say sensitive, to the prevailing ethos on such matters. I recently edited a translation from Czech into English of a game script. Had been done by a native Czech speaker and needed a bit of cleaning up. And I had to remove a reference to “negro rap music”. The producer asked, well, what word should we use instead? Nigger maybe?

Err, no, that probably wouldn’t be appropriate really……and then everyone got entirely mystified as I tried to explain how Cumberbatch had been shouted at for using the word “coloured”. People of color is the correct term these days: something which was really very difficult to get across, the stylistic differences between these alternative words for melanin enhancement.

And as to why NWA can use a word which we can’t absolutely no one could understand that. So I can understand why the Danes might be a little mystified. It’s entirely obvious to any native English speaker why Tetris with slaves might not be looked upon kindly. But actually explaining why is a little more difficult. Sometimes it’s a great deal easier to just say, well, no, we don’t do that.

24 thoughts on “Snigger”

  1. Now that we’ve got people of colour agreed as the acceptable choice for race, can we use this as a template?

    People of gender
    People of weight
    People of ginger

    Anyone got a suggestion for a suitable replacement for gay?

  2. Replacing “coloured” with “people of colour” is pretty feeble. That replaces two syllables with five. That’s a 150% increase in the number of syllables. Normally the politically correct manage to add far more unnecessary syllables than that. For example in the US “black” has been replaced with “African American”. That expands one syllable to seven: a 700% increase.

  3. Kind of puts the tin lid on the idea that the British are the most racist xenophobic bigots on the planet who need replacing with all those lovely equality and humanity loving foreigners (© Frances Coppola) then doesn’t it?

  4. “But then here on mainland Europe people aren’t quite as, shall we say sensitive, to the prevailing ethos on such matters.”

    People in mainland Europe haven’t had their elites pandering to the Diversity Industry like we have. For example: France takes a view that you come to France, you will be French. Not Muslim-French, not African-French, but French. Your kids aren’t going to wear a headscarf in school because that’s not part of the French school uniform. Go to prison? You won’t get halal meat. They don’t pour money into multicultural fake charities. They pour money into integration.

  5. bloke (not) in spain

    The Stig’s not wrong about the Frogs.
    My French ex used to listen to a radio show on RTL every afternoon. Les Grosses Tetes. Which was pretty well endless stream of racist, sexist, homophobic gags. I used to mine it for translated, culturally adjusted material for general entertainment. Fascinating the effect one of France’s most popular shows had on Brits. You’d see even some of the most hardened non-PCers flinching.

  6. Jim said:

    Kind of puts the tin lid on the idea that the British are the most racist xenophobic bigots on the planet who need replacing with all those lovely equality and humanity loving foreigners (© Frances Coppola) then doesn’t it?

    Britain’s racist supremacy can be easily maintained so long as you reduce foreigners to simpletons who are not clever enough to know they are being racist.

    Calling for arbitrary diversity is playing colonial Pokemon and treating minorities as objects,

  7. So Much For Subtlety

    ProgContra – “Anyone got a suggestion for a suitable replacement for gay?”

    People of the Absolutely Central Part of the Normal Distribution and Don’t You Dare Suggest Otherwise?

    And as to why NWA can use a word which we can’t absolutely no one could understand that.

    We must have all seen the prison film where the new guy enters a prison cell and the older prisoner tells him he can’t sit on the bottom bunk because it is his. So he moves to the top one. Only to be told that one is taken too.

    It is the same with rude words. The aim is to bully and humiliate. When people say that there are words they can use and you cannot, the aim is to see whether you are going to be someone’s girlfriend.

    And needless to say, we all are.

  8. There was a Tetris mini-game that used corpses of Black Death victims as blocks on the CD-ROM Monty Python’s Complete Waste of Time. Strange, as a descendant of the survivors I didn’t feel too offended.

  9. Seem to recall there was a porno version of Tetris with naked people dropping onto each other, complete with erotic sound effects!

  10. Have to agree that some of the most overt racism I’ve come across has been from acquaintances of African and Asian origin.
    And as for the Indian attitude to people from Pakistan.
    Have to say have noticed that in North America you can get away with a lot more on TV than you could in Britain regarding racial and other stereotypes.

  11. Kind of puts the tin lid on the idea that the British are the most racist xenophobic bigots on the planet who need replacing with all those lovely equality and humanity loving foreigners (© Frances Coppola) then doesn’t it?

    Something Frances didn’t say, but what you appear to have (unreasonably) inferred.

  12. So Much For Subtlety

    ukliberty – “Something Frances didn’t say, but what you appear to have (unreasonably) inferred.”

    So you are saying that she wanted Britain to be flooded with lots of people who were even more racist? Because she hated British people so much, making British society even more riven by racial hate is a good thing?

    An interesting line of defence.

    Could you explain why that inference is, in your opinion, unreasonable?

  13. @ukliberty: I quote directly from her own website and her own comment:

    “The UK has been breeding terrorists and has a long history of religious conflict. It already has its fair share of homophobes and misogynists and is notably xenophobic. I for one would regard immigration as a good thing if it helped to shift dysfunctional cultural attitudes and entrenched racist xenophobia”

    Seeing as bringing in immigrants who are even more xenophobic and bigoted than the natives is hardly going to improve the overall situation, the only conclusion is that FC sees the immigrants as less bigoted and xenophobic than the indigenous inhabitants, and their arrival can only improve things.

    She specifically calls the UK natives ‘particularly xenophobic’, which can only mean they are at the very least in the top half of xenophobic peoples, arguably the top 25%. I’d like to see the roll of nations that display less xenophobic attitudes than the UK. According to FC its quite long. Would you care to attempt a list?

  14. SMFS,

    So you are saying that she wanted Britain to be flooded with lots of people who were even more racist? Because she hated British people so much, making British society even more riven by racial hate is a good thing?

    No, I’m not saying either of those things. You do seem to struggle with reading and making reasonable inferences.

  15. So Much For Subtlety

    ukliberty – “No, I’m not saying either of those things. You do seem to struggle with reading and making reasonable inferences.”

    She said, and I quote:

    “The UK has been breeding terrorists and has a long history of religious conflict. It already has its fair share of homophobes and misogynists and is notably xenophobic. I for one would regard immigration as a good thing if it helped to shift dysfunctional cultural attitudes and entrenched racist xenophobia”

    So we can agree she thinks the British are a particular nasty lot, yeah? How then does allowing more immigrants into this country reduce that racism unless, as is the obvious answer, she thinks that they are less racist than the British and so that racism would be diluted?

    You deny that is her intent. So what is it then?

    Perhaps she thinks they are more racist? That seems to be the other option. So what does she think? Bringing in more people who hate White people will make Britain less racist how? You don’t think it is a reasonable inference to claim that she probably thinks that a lot more groomed 12 year olds will make White people reflect on how evil they are?

    What is the reasonable inference about what she meant if she does not mean the obvious?

    I mean it is a batsh!t crazy argument either way. But if you reject the obvious answer, then the alternatives are going to be more crazy.

  16. Jim,

    Seeing as bringing in immigrants who are even more xenophobic and bigoted than the natives is hardly going to improve the overall situation, the only conclusion is that FC sees the immigrants as less bigoted and xenophobic than the indigenous inhabitants, and their arrival can only improve things.

    Is that really “the only conclusion”? It occurred to me that FC might think exposure to immigrants might reduce prejudice. So there are at least two conclusions.

    She specifically calls the UK natives ‘particularly xenophobic’, which can only mean they are at the very least in the top half of xenophobic peoples, arguably the top 25%. I’d like to see the roll of nations that display less xenophobic attitudes than the UK. According to FC its quite long. Would you care to attempt a list?

    Because I feel you have made your mind up, I don’t see any value in doing so even if I knew where to start. But I’d be happy to agree that there are 196 countries and if ranked by most xenophobes per capita UK is likely not in the top 20, 40, 50 and so on, becoming increasingly less certain as we proceed down the list.

    According to the most recent British Social Attitudes Survey that asked (2013, reported on in 2014 iirc), 30% of respondents admitted to some level of racial prejudice, that proportion going up and down over the years but trending down in the 1990s and trending up in first decade of the 2000s. 30% seems a significant proportion to me – where does it put the UK on our list, I don’t know.

  17. So Much For Sagacity,

    You don’t think it is a reasonable inference to claim that she probably thinks that a lot more groomed 12 year olds will make White people reflect on how evil they are?

    Nope. Do you? Do you really?

    Problem is, Jim and So Much For Smarts, you seem to apply the very worst possible interpretation of what’s being said.
    “The UK has some racists” -> “My god, she’s said the UK is the most racist country! Windmill!”

    Theophrastus,

    Game, set and match to SMFS and Jim.

    That hurts – I found myself sagely nodding at your comment that if you excluded all of the more densely populated countries the UK is the most densely populated country. +1 Insightful.

  18. So Much For Subtlety

    ukliberty – “Nope. Do you? Do you really?”

    Actually that is pretty much what you just said to Jim – you think she thinks exposure to immigrants and their winning ways will reduce racism.

    “Problem is, Jim and So Much For Smarts, you seem to apply the very worst possible interpretation of what’s being said.”

    Mr Pot, meet Mr Kettle.

    ““The UK has some racists” -> “My god, she’s said the UK is the most racist country! Windmill!””

    She did not say the UK had some racists. No one would give a f**k if she had said that. Everyone says that. She said something else. She said that Britain was “notably xenophobic.” Noted by who precisely? Everyone else on the planet? She thinks this is what we are famous for? She also said Britain had “dysfunctional cultural attitudes” and suffered from “entrenched racist xenophobia”.

    You call someone’s Mother a cheap whore and you’re going to get a fight. She did worse than that. You can try to re-write what she said – taking, of course, the best possible interpretation you can dream up – but it isn’t going to wash. She said something crass, stupid, ill-informed, untrue and very offensive. She can reasonably expect some blowback.

  19. @ukliberty:”It occurred to me that FC might think exposure to immigrants might reduce prejudice”

    I agree it might. But only if the immigrants are less bigoted and xenophobic than the existing natives. Because if Mr and Mrs Immigrant move in next door to Mr and Mrs Native, and Mr Immigrant shouts abuse at people for being ‘faggots’ and ‘English scum’ and treats his wife like dirt, it hardly going to make Mr Native think ‘Gosh, all my prejudices about foreigners were wrong!’ now is it? Prejudices can only be reduced if they are shown to be not true. If they are shown to be true then they aren’t prejudices any more, they are facts.

    You appear to be suffering from Richard Murphy disease – the inability to see second or third effects or logical conclusions (sometimes not even first effects in RMs case to be honest).

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