My little sister (she's 32) just posted this on FB and it made me so sad...

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Posted 5/28/2012 by batya in NSBR Board
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mirabelleswalker
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Posted: 5/28/2012 2:27:19 PM

As long as it's just a vent or comment (especially a stereotyping comment that fits), I choose to view it as that person venting their frustration at that point in time.




What on earth is a "stereotyping comment that fits"?



freecharlie
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Posted: 5/28/2012 2:32:02 PM

but sadly, since moving to the midwest, my DDs have heard a ton at school, from 4th grade in northern KY to 8th grade in Cincinnati. "Jew" is a common put down among these kids. It doesn't even mean anything, as those kids really know nothing about jews, even the common stereotypes. It's just a put down word.

That is incredibly sad.

I will admit to using gypt (sp?) when you got screwed out of something when I was a kid. It never occurred to me that it was a derogatory term for gypsies. In fact, at the time I thought gypsies were more of a fictional creation and were not people. I was an adult before I figured it out and quit using it.

I am not saying that the kids should use words like these, but unless an adult (or I guess another child) steps in and tell them what the words mean and why they shouldn't be used you can't expect the kids to know. hopefully there is someone who will educate these kids so the cycle doesn't continue.

When I was a kid the word "retard" was used a lot. It was used in reference to the children in the resource room and it was used to call people stupid. I used it in elementary and part of jr high until someone explained why I shouldn't use it. My own children used it once around me and I asked if they knew what it meant. They didn't, so I explained. Then we discussed why we don't use the word. They don't use it around me and I hope they don't use it at all.

Unfortunately many parents, schools, other adults, and kids shy away from confronting someone who uses words like these and educational opportunities are lost. I know we can't change some adults minds, but I can't and won't stay mute when things like this come up.


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mlana
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Posted: 5/28/2012 2:37:56 PM

A friend I've known for years surprised me, not in a good way, by using the expression "jewed him down" when talking about negotiating with a car dealer. I was even more surprised that she truly didn't know the origins of the phrase, or how offensive it was. To her, it was just something she'd heard and used for years. In a way, it was even sadder that no one had ever told her otherwise.



Marycain, this was me. Seriously.

I honestly thought this was a compliment to Jewish bargaining skills. It never occurred to me that people thought of this expression as being racist or derogatory. I greatly admire people who are sharp bargainers, so I thought nothing of using it in front of a Jewish friend. LOL Boy, did she set me straight fast. After I explained why I thought it was a compliment, she thought for a minute, then laughed. She said that she would probably not be able to be friends with anyone else who used that expression, but she did know how much I loved a bargain and she did believe I thought it was complimentary.

You can bet, though, that that expression will never leave my mouth again. I wish it would never cross my mind again, but, like other racist words and expressions from my childhood, it probably will. It's very hard to remove what you grew up with from your brain. I will, however, choose to think and act differently.

I know that my Southern drawl is why the bigots in the room always seem to find me. I guess, given how many stereotypes they believe in, believing that all Southerners are fellow bigots is just natural. They don't leave still believing that stereotype, though. LOL I've been called many things, but quiet when I disagree with something has never been one of them.

Batya, I am sorry that your sister has had this happen to her.

Marcy



pennyring
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Posted: 5/28/2012 2:42:43 PM
Some lady at my garage sale on Saturday told me she was happy with her purchases because she had properly jewed me down. But if you read my Garage Sale thread, you'll know I got a ton of weirdos, so I didn't put much stock in her comment.

Same lady also shared that she's currently on methadone and vicadin! Woohoo, go her!




jodster70
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Posted: 5/28/2012 2:43:54 PM
I don't think Batya's sis should have to change her last name either. I was simply making the comment that she could do it if she wanted to.

Secondly, I wanted to add that I used the expression "jew" down all my life, & until a thread on here a few years ago, I had never made the connection it was a slur. I thought it was a homonym. Needless to say, I don't use it any more. I'm still ashamed that I ever used it out of ignorance.

I still hear racial crap all the time, and that hasn't mattered *where* I live, North or South. I really haven't heard Jewish slurs. It's amazing the stuff that comes out of people's mouths, but if you call them on it, they act all shocked and say, "I'm not a racist!"

This is the first neighborhood I've ever lived in where I know my neighbors aren't racist, and from what I understand, the former owners of our house were pretty openly racist. Disgusting.


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Posted: 5/28/2012 2:49:24 PM
I don't blame anyone who used those expressions not knowing where they came from. Heck I never heard of it until I was an older teen and someone tried to use it in scrabble and I was all . That's why I believe in multicultural education and awareness. Not everyone will be exposed to everyone and everything. Then if you know better you do better. And if you don't, well then, that's when I look down on you.


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OKtrae
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Posted: 5/28/2012 2:50:26 PM
I was an adult reading on here before I knew the expression was 'jewed him down'... I thought it was 'chewed him down'.. As in the person had nagged (ie chewed) on someone until they gave in.

I'm still not 100% sure that the person I heard use it years ago didn't say chew. It could have been an accent thing though and he really did say Jew...



Hello There
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Posted: 5/28/2012 2:52:12 PM
I'm so sorry for the hurtful comments people have received. The comments are wrong on so many levels.

But when the stereotype comments are lighthearted we just laugh. At a family event a few years ago - my Japanese aunt was talking about getting a traffic ticket. She got a ticket on a Southern California freeway for going 40 miles an hour when there was no traffic (there really are two freeway speeds 0 and 80). It was about half caucasion and half Japanese in the room (about 18 people from 15 - 80 years old) - everyone was practically on the floor crying they were laughing so hard . You should have heard the jokes that followed. Oh - and her immediate family was leading the charge.

My family family loves to joke and there have been stereotype jokes made about everyone. The funny thing is is that most people start the joke themselves - Bapitists start the Baptist jokes, Mexicans start the Mexican jokes, blonds start the blond jokes, Italians start the Italian jokes.

But, these jokes are all good natured and never meant to hurt anyone.




oh yvonne
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Posted: 5/28/2012 2:55:32 PM
well, I'm also guilty of using a stereotype word for years not knowing it was such. I've always thought the word 'shyster' sp? to describe a crook was a correct word. I thought it was a Yiddish word, maybe, but I never thought it was a racial slur. I just thought it meant ANYONE who was a con man.

I think it was you, Batya, who corrected me on that one, and since then I've mostly eliminated it from my vocabulary, except for a few slips. Hard habit to break, I always liked that word.


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MrsPibb
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Posted: 5/28/2012 3:00:05 PM

Isn't this ironic on a thread about stereotyping?


I have to admit I kind of chuckled in disbelief when I read it.


Wendy

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Posted: 5/28/2012 3:18:20 PM
"shyster" is an ethnic slur? I never heard that. Sometimes people do make innocent mistakes like that, such as the time I said I hadn't seen someone in a coon's age and my black friend was aghast. I had no idea sometimes black people were called "coons", never heard that ever. I just thought it meant a really long time. It still doesn't make sense as a racial slur and I've heard con men referred to as "shysters" my whole life, never in reference to anyone Jewish. Probably a lot of people don't know about that. I'll have to google.

Grew up in IL/IA, never met a Jewish person that I knew of until I was 16, never once heard any anti-Semitic comments. Maybe because there weren't any around to comment about, I don't know. I was totally mystified while reading The Diary of Anne Frank (I think I was 9 or so) for the first time that anyone was persecuted because of religion. We never attended church so it wasn't something that any importance was ever placed on.

I wouldn't ever say "jewed him down" and I never heard that phrase until I was 30 years old.

zombie*grrl
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Posted: 5/28/2012 3:20:48 PM
OK, according to wikipedia, it probably originates from a German word that means "deceiver" and not necessarily referring to any one religion or any other group.

So I can continue to use it without worrying.

oh yvonne
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Posted: 5/28/2012 3:23:26 PM
That's what I thought too, Zombie girl, but Batya was pretty adamant about it.

I prefer to be safe and just not use it myself.


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*maureen*
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Posted: 5/28/2012 3:24:39 PM
Shyster is derived from the German term scheisser, meaning literally "one who defecates," from the verb scheissen, "to defecate" with the English suffix -ster, "one who does," substituted for the German suffix -er, meaning the same thing.

Generally used to describe someone who is untrustworthy, money grabbing and full of crap, particularly in the field of legal work for some reason.

definition of shyster


A Jewish professional who cons people. Taken from the Shakespearian character Shylock, in "The Merchant of Venice."

pennyring
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Posted: 5/28/2012 3:27:34 PM
"Coon's age" isn't racist. It's actually in reference to raccoons being long-lived.

I know black people who are sensitive about anything that seems borderline racist though. I've done research before to prove I'm not racist for using the term white trash, among other sayings.

I just don't like when people throw down the "racist" label when they're really the ignorant one.







oh yvonne
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Posted: 5/28/2012 3:31:13 PM

"Coon's age" isn't racist. It's actually in reference to raccoons being long-lived.

I know black people who are sensitive about anything that seems borderline racist though.......I just don't like when people throw down the "racist" label when they're really the ignorant ones


Well, that's true too. Anyone remember the infamous "pot calling kettle black' episode with the infamous Omorosa on the original Apprentice? OMG, she made the BIGGEST deal out of that one. The poor gal who used the term was positively speechless.


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Peabay
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Posted: 5/28/2012 3:39:01 PM

My family family loves to joke and there have been stereotype jokes made about everyone. The funny thing is is that most people start the joke themselves - Bapitists start the Baptist jokes, Mexicans start the Mexican jokes, blonds start the blond jokes, Italians start the Italian jokes.


That's just part of that strange phenomenon where it's okay for people of that group to joke about that group, but not for others. It's just that way and it'll never change.

Just like it's okay for me to complain about my mom, but if anyone else puts her down, I'll rip out their throats.



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Posted: 5/28/2012 3:58:59 PM
Well that's good to know, pennyring, though I didn't think raccoons were all that long-lived.
If a shyster is one who defecates, I guess we're all shysters. In any case I feel very confident that in my neck of the woods, it means a crook or a charlatan and has nothing at all to do with being Jewish.


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peaterpumpkineater
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Posted: 5/28/2012 4:11:03 PM
Considering that both Wikipedia and Urban Dictionary can be edited by literally anybody, I don't think either of them should be used as a resource for anything of merit.

lucyg819
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Posted: 5/28/2012 4:13:47 PM
I have never heard of shyster being a slur against anyone besides lawyers. It is used frequently in my family of Jewish lawyers, so someone better explain to me what the problem is, if there really is a problem with it.

I find white trash, on the other hand, to be intrinsically racist even though I know it usually isn't really intended that way. Pennyring, you can do all the research you like. It's still racist, just like jewing down.

My late MIL (of whom I was very fond) used to talk about jewing someone down once in a while. I would just look at her and say REALLY?? She would giggle and move on. I know she didn't mean it unkindly but I didn't think it was an intelligent word choice. She meant well but she wasn't very well-educated or worldly.


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peaterpumpkineater
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Posted: 5/28/2012 4:16:45 PM

Well that's good to know, pennyring, though I didn't think raccoons were all that long-lived.



I never would have guessed it myself, considering how often I see them belly up in the middle of the road.

Maybe once they reach old age and feel they can't go on any more, they go to the road for a quick death?

peaterpumpkineater
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Posted: 5/28/2012 4:25:55 PM
Also regardless of a word or phrase's true origins, it can easily become associated with something else, and then become hate speech.

For an interesting example, check out this article on the word 'faggot.'

Article Link


zombie*grrl
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Posted: 5/28/2012 4:37:37 PM
Lol, yes raccoons do seem to be suicidal little bastards!


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scrappower
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Posted: 5/28/2012 4:43:52 PM

Considering that both Wikipedia and Urban Dictionary can be edited by literally anybody, I don't think either of them should be used as a resource for anything of merit.


Actually Wikipedia has been found to be just as accurate as many of the print resources out there.



peano
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Posted: 5/28/2012 4:48:17 PM
A couple of comments from this Jew:

If I wanted to avoid offense, I would not use the word shyster.

Fortunately, I've never had a slur directed directly at me, which is maybe sort of remarkable considering I grew up in the South. I think I was perceived as a kind of exotic creature. I had people telling me they were praying for my soul but I think that's just people trying to follow their own religious path.

And this made me laugh:


Marycain, this was me. Seriously.

I honestly thought this was a compliment to Jewish bargaining skills. It never occurred to me that people thought of this expression as being racist or derogatory. I greatly admire people who are sharp bargainers, so I thought nothing of using it in front of a Jewish friend. LOL Boy, did she set me straight fast. After I explained why I thought it was a compliment, she thought for a minute, then laughed. She said that she would probably not be able to be friends with anyone else who used that expression, but she did know how much I loved a bargain and she did believe I thought it was complimentary.



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pennyring
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Posted: 5/28/2012 4:58:44 PM

I find white trash, on the other hand, to be intrinsically racist even though I know it usually isn't really intended that way. Pennyring, you can do all the research you like. It's still racist, just like jewing down.


How do you figure it's racist? Because it has the word "white" in the name? I'm interested in knowing why you think it's racist. When I looked into the origins of the term, I determined it was not.


ETA: "Calling a spade a spade" is another one of those terms that people think is racist when it is not.

I just don't like people jumping to wrong conclusions without bothering to learn about things like this.






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Posted: 5/28/2012 4:59:20 PM
Ignorance and hatred are alive and well. Batya-stupid should hurt. Stereotypes perpetuate the ignorance that people have about groups in our society. We are not one size fits all. Each individual is unique w/in a group. Not every (insert group here) does(insert action here). I didn't see hate in that post, but I did see some very questionable thinking. Perhaps that poster hasn't had a lot of interaction w/people who are not w/in her comfort zone.


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Posted: 5/28/2012 4:59:26 PM
Ignorance and hatred are alive and well. Batya-stupid should hurt. Stereotypes perpetuate the ignorance that people have about groups in our society. We are not one size fits all. Each individual is unique w/in a group. Not every (insert group here) does(insert action here). I didn't see hate in that post, but I did see some very questionable thinking. Perhaps that poster hasn't had a lot of interaction w/people who are not w/in her comfort zone.


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lucyg819
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Posted: 5/28/2012 5:01:02 PM

If I wanted to avoid offense, I would not use the word shyster.

I still need it explained to me. What is the offensive meaning? Is it regional? Because this is the first I've ever heard of it being possibly an offensive word. Everyone is tiptoeing around and no one is telling me what's wrong with it.


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Posted: 5/28/2012 7:37:15 PM

I will admit to using gypt (sp?) when you got screwed out of something when I was a kid. It never occurred to me that it was a derogatory term for gypsies. In fact, at the time I thought gypsies were more of a fictional creation and were not people. I was an adult before I figured it out and quit using it. 


Well there you go. I'm 44 year old and it never occurred to me that it was related to gypsies. I remember as a kid using the word 'jipped' as in "I've been jipped" meaning I've been cheated out of something. I always spelled it 'jipped', which is why it didn't relate it to gypsies.

I also remember as a primary (elementary) school child in the 70s we would use the word 'jew' to describe someone who would, for example, always take lollies from people but never give any back. I am horrified now at my ignorance. I reckon I was in the later years of high school before I realised the 'meaning' behind the term.

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Posted: 5/28/2012 7:39:37 PM

I still need it explained to me. What is the offensive meaning [of shyster]?


I've been told that shyster, when used by Gentiles, is thought to be directed at unscrupulous JEWISH lawyers.

I also know someone who used "chew him down" with no awareness of the origin.

I hate, hate, hate "white trash." To me, you're saying, "These people are WHITE trash. It's unusual to be white and trashy, so I have to say it. Black people are trashy by default. Nobody ever has to say "black trash" cause it's implied."

I didn't know the origin and spelling of "Gyp" (cheat) until recently. Or that "welch" (renege) comes from "Welsh." I knew about "Indian Giver," but only learned recently that "Indian summer" comes from the same assumption - something that Indians give that they then take away.

That "pot calling the kettle black" story is funny. Did the offended contestant ever concede?

Reminds me of all the "lipstick on a pig" outrage with Sarah Palin.




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Posted: 5/28/2012 7:55:12 PM
"I hate, hate, hate "white trash." To me, you're saying, "These people are WHITE trash. It's unusual to be white and trashy, so I have to say it. Black people are trashy by default. Nobody ever has to say "black trash" cause it's implied.""

OK, I have never thought of this. I use the phrase 'white trash' all the time and never considered this interpretation. But you are so right. I won't be using it anymore!


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Posted: 5/28/2012 9:22:11 PM
I'm truly sorry that your sister was hurt by that person's remark. It's sad that people can be so close-minded and hurtful.


Ginny

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Posted: 5/28/2012 9:34:00 PM
Oh man. "gypped" and "shyster" too? Wow. I hope I don't say anything else bad out of ignorance!


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Posted: 5/28/2012 10:50:53 PM
Shyster also has some connection to the character of Shylock in one of Shakespeare's play; The Merchant of Venice I believe. He was an unscrupulous character, if I recall, and he was Jewish.

To the person who put it on South Park that kids use the term 'jewed,' -I'm not sure that's fair. I remember that term when I was in grade 5 or or 6. It was an insult - if you got jewed, you got taken, screwed over, cheated.

And as someone who has taken a great deal of anti-racism training I have to say that stereotyping in and of itself isn't the problem. It's holding on to stereotypes. Stereotyping is a way to form an intial categorization. It's a way of defining which group is which. And saying that you can find general similarities between people who belong to certain groups is in and of itself not terrible. It's when you can't let go of those generalities and see people as individuals that it is a problem. Peabay and another pea were talking about how groups themselves will make jokes about their broad ethnic category (or in some cases, religious groups/denominations). It's a way of forming an initial connection - a way of being able to say, 'I know you. I know where I fit within this group.' The problem becomes when those lines become rigid.

An example: There's much joking in my church re: how the Dutch can be on the thrifty side, to put it politely. That's also a common Croatian stereotype (though because I'm Croatian, in our case I am comfortable being more blunt and saying generally, we're cheap!) Now are all Croatian immigrants or their kids cheap? No, of course not. But there are probably more that are than aren't. We were raised by parents who were raised by parents who had to scrimp to get by. Even now that we don't have to, it's become part of our DNA on some level.

So while I certainly think the case Batya described is terrible, and saying anything derogatory about another person due to their race, religion, sex, or sexual orientation is wrong and not acceptable, that's different from saying stereotypes started out of some behaviour that occurred frequently enough to be recognizeable. That broader topic is almost too complex for a discussion board.



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Posted: 5/28/2012 11:03:39 PM

I still need it explained to me. What is the offensive meaning? Is it regional? Because this is the first I've ever heard of it being possibly an offensive word. Everyone is tiptoeing around and no one is telling me what's wrong with it.


OK, Lucy, so Shakespeare wrote this character, Shylock (did I spell that correctly) who was a Jewish moneylender, and not a fine, upstanding character. The word Shyster (which my Jewish mother used all the time) referred to someone who was out to steal your money.

In much of the medieval world, money lending was one of the only jobs open to Jews, one of the few things they could do, and Jews were often uniquely suited to the job because they were often the only literate folks around (Jewish culture, with its emphasis on learning and study, meant that Jews were often literate when others were not). However, when the ruling class wanted to avoid the wrath of the poor, they pointed the fingers at the Jews as having all the money, which was not true. Jews became the scapegoats for a lot of inequality.

Enough of all that, miss you Lucy. Let's get together soon. Scrapbooking?



*Scrapper*
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Posted: 5/28/2012 11:46:24 PM
I'm so sorry.

It does just hit you in the gut, doesn't it?

I honestly don't know that a Jewish last name would protect you or your sister or anyone who is Jewish from hearing bigotry. People who are bigots will most likely reveal themselves regardless of one's surname. They'll just blurt it out there without thinking.

But your sister's story reminded me of this:

When I was a junior in high school I was part of a group project in some class. Our group had a question about something and I thought this guy who I'd always been on decent terms with might know the answer so I got up and went to ask him.

Before I could ask my question, however, I happened to look down at his desk and notice that he had written DIE MORMONS DIE and other nasty things about Mormons all over his paper textbook cover. I remember feeling like I'd been punched in the gut. I don't even remember if I asked him the question or not after that. I think I just mumbled something and sat back down with my group.

Bigotry is ugly.

I have to tell you Batya--I love the Jewish Anti-Defamation League. I love that they stand up against bigotry in all its forms. We had an anti-Mormon thing happen in my area a few years ago and the ADL was right there. They put out a call for information on the situation so I called and told them what I'd witnessed and they thanked me for coming forward. Then they put out a public statement decrying the incident and denouncing religious bigotry and then a few weeks later they called me back to make sure the incident had not re-occurred. They were just awesome. Believe me, if I am ever in the situation to stand up against antisemitism in my community, I will.


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lucyg819
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Posted: 5/29/2012 12:34:55 AM
Thank you, shosh, but I've been researching this and finding no evidence that the term shyster is actually a slur against Jews.

Merriam-Webster says it refers to unscrupulous professional practices, esp. lawyers and politicians. OED says similar, with no mention of a reference to Jews in either. Wikipedia says the idea it's a Jewish slur is a mistaken notion. It does not derive from Shylock or medieval moneylenders.

Then there's this great bit I found straightdope.com question/answer that talks about the issue in depth.

My bottom line is that my East Coast raised, Ivy League educated, daughter-wife-and-mother-of-Jewish-lawyers mother uses the term all the time (ask her what she thinks about lawyers who advertise), and she would certainly not use it if it were any kind of a religious slur.


LUCYG
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I-95
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Posted: 5/29/2012 1:05:19 AM
I think anyone from a minority group has been sucker punched, by ignorant stereotypes, sometime in their lives. Not that it negates the pain that comes with it, but I guess I don't hang out with idiots, so I rarely hear anyone saying something that is intentionally harmful.

I have, however, read threads on this very board where the word retard has been discussed, or references made to riding the 'short bus'. As the mother of two profoundly autistic children, I find those comments offensive, but I've read numerous comments saying 'suck it up, it's just a word'

I have to admit to being offended every time Hollywood wants to portray a character who not the sharpest knife in the drawer....they ALWAYS give them a Southern accent.

I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest that the poster who referred to 'Stereotypes that were true' was perhaps referring to something along the line of...say, Jewish mothers. I find a lot of them to be true, and classically funny...and so does my Jewish MIL, who freely admits she's a stereotypical Jewish mother.


scrappyinNE
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Posted: 5/29/2012 6:34:48 AM
I'm so sorry - it does take your breath away.

I grew up in NJ just across from NYC. My maiden name was a name that sounded very German to lots of people (those ignorant to the fact that FIELD at the end of a name usually was of English origin, which my father was), so I was always "jokingly" called a Nazi. In reality my mother is a German Jew whose father escaped a concentration camp, went to Switzerland, and immigrated to the US, where he met my very Jewish grandmother who had immigrated as a teenager before the war. I can't remember how many times I would find a swastika drawn on my book covers or my locker. (This was back in the late 1970s).

ashazamm
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Posted: 5/29/2012 8:41:24 AM
Sucks to be bullied, doesn't it BATYA!!! You're a big bully yourself! You've bullied me. What's that saying? People in glass houses....

Fraidyscrapper
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Posted: 5/29/2012 8:55:54 AM
Ashazamm, you clearly are mistaken - especially since batya isn't even discussing something that happened to her! Batya a bully? You'd have to have some pretty convincing evidence - and seeing as how you dropped that and ran, my guess is you do not.


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*maureen*
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Posted: 5/29/2012 8:56:28 AM

I can't remember how many times I would find a swastika drawn on my book covers or my locker. (This was back in the late 1970s).


My son had to deal with that last year. The child in question was eventually turned in by her friends and said child was expelled from our school for committing a hate crime.

batya
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Posted: 5/29/2012 9:06:16 AM

ashazamm
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Posted: 5/29/2012 9:41:24 AM
Sucks to be bullied, doesn't it BATYA!!! You're a big bully yourself! You've bullied me. What's that saying? People in glass houses....
My NSD 2012 Badges: (updated every 15 minutes)



Hmm. I don't recognize you. And to bully someone I would think it would be repeated harassing which I don't recall doing to anyone, but if I did it to you, I'd probably know who you are. If you could point out specific instances, please do so I have a chance to redeem myself and apologize b/c I don't approve of that kind of behavior ever. It's reprehensible. I may be blunt. You may disagree with me. But that is not bullying.

That said, my sister was not bullied. I never intimated that she was. She was insulted and angered. She had a visceral reaction to hate. Re-read the OP. This is not about bullying. It's about discrimination and hate. I think the word bullying is over and misused here. People don't know what it is and it loses the sting of what it really is.

ETA: Thanks Fraidy. Truly that post made me .


OK. Newbie. This is how it works. If your post consists of 80% sanity, 10% stupidity and 10% all kinds of crazy, we immediately focus on the 20% b/c it discredits the 80%.




batya
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Posted: 5/29/2012 9:20:11 AM
Scrapper, I'm so sorry that happened to you. I remember when I was looking at colleges, one had a very high Jewish population and I noticed graffiti about all the "damn Jews there" and I never told my parents b/c I didn't want them to worry about me being 16 away from home.

I love the ADL. When I was in law school I was looking for an internship with them but ultimately ended up with the Association for Retarded Children (ARC) that's what it was called then. I was a pro-bono junkie.


OK. Newbie. This is how it works. If your post consists of 80% sanity, 10% stupidity and 10% all kinds of crazy, we immediately focus on the 20% b/c it discredits the 80%.




oh yvonne
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Posted: 5/29/2012 9:21:07 AM
Batya, I think Ashazam has had a name change, but I can't tell who she was.

I didn't mean to derail the thread with the whole shyster debate, but can you clarify for me? Didn't we have a convo here in the not too distant past where you taught me shyster was a slur? I hope I didn't get it wrong, I was fairly certain it was you.


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batya
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Posted: 5/29/2012 9:25:57 AM
It could have been me. I grew up with it always having that Jewish negative connotation. If you google it, there's a mixed bag of opinions. But a definite known connotation. If you said it to me, I wouldn't take you for an anti-semite. Just the way I wouldn't assume someone saying gypped was a gypsy-hater. KWIM?


OK. Newbie. This is how it works. If your post consists of 80% sanity, 10% stupidity and 10% all kinds of crazy, we immediately focus on the 20% b/c it discredits the 80%.




mamashosh
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Posted: 5/29/2012 10:28:02 AM

I grew up with it always having that Jewish negative connotation. If you google it, there's a mixed bag of opinions. But a definite known connotation. If you said it to me, I wouldn't take you for an anti-semite. Just the way I wouldn't assume someone saying gypped was a gypsy-hater. KWIM?



OK, Lucy, maybe it doesn't have factual roots in anti-semitism, but I agree with Batya that I always understood it as being about Jews. I also agree that I don't assume anti-semitism when I hear it, similarly to hearing gypped. Nevertheless, I will no longer say gypped, because now I know better. Saying shyster makes me shrug, doesn't enrage me.

Now 'jewed down' is a phrase I never heard till adulthood, and that is a whole 'nother ball of wax. Or the comment I once heard from someone about how she doesn't like "Jews and their merchant mentality" or the friend who told me she was 'tired of my Jewish friends and their bourgeois backgrounds' or something like that, those were not easily shrugged off.



melanell
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Posted: 5/29/2012 10:45:17 AM
I'm sorry batya. That's awful.




MsChiff, really?

If I hear something like that, I actually would assume that person is either uneducated, ignorant, or a bigot, or all of the above. And it doesn't matter what group of people they are talking about.



I agree.



TeachOne
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Posted: 5/29/2012 10:51:15 AM
"I know black people who are sensitive about anything that seems borderline racist though..."


Maybe they are sensitive because they have been the target of covert and overt racism for years. Black people aren't the only ones who are sensitive about things that may be questionably racist or discriminatory as this thread shows. I think your comment was rude, insensitive and is a gross sweeping generalization. As with every group there are some people who over react about everything like my overweight friend who ties everyones comments and reactions to her weight. Then there are those who want to minimize every minorities response to racists actions as overreacting or being overly sensitive.
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