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What do you call a xxxx xxxxx man? May 9, 2006 5:49 PM   Subscribe

What do you call a xxxx xxxxx man?
posted by angrybeaver to Etiquette/Policy at 5:49 PM (83 comments total)

Doesn't matter, he can't hear me anyway.

... That's some good advice, jessamyn. Let's hope it doesn't fall on deaf ears.

... Can we chill out with the racist jokes? I mean, for real. (no mention of the deaf jokes)

... Maybe she could offer to put on earmuffs.

... What?

... deaf people everywhere are sleeping soundly tonight now that they've heard (heh) your brave speech.

... xxxx writes "What?"
xxxx FTW... oh man, that is great.

... A non-deaf president is better because she is able to hear.

... Everyone here can hear right?

... Can you hear me now?

xxxx flagged as offensive
... Or funny.

... "Don't be blind deaf to the ideas of others?"

... Were you going to point out that her dog's name obviously wasn't "Belle"?

What is it with all the anti-deaf comments in these two threads? I have had to develop a pretty thick skin over the years, but wow, oh wow.
posted by angrybeaver at 5:49 PM on May 9, 2006


I'm hard of hearing, it may be directed at me. I'm pretty tired of the jokes as well.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 5:55 PM on May 9, 2006


angrybeaver: I'm sorry if some of the jokes offend you. But, and this is an example of the communication gap these days, some of it may be meant in the spirit of 'I'm gonna josh with you just like everyone else.' If that's not how you take it, that's understandable, and I'll refrain from any such humor around you, but feel free to make fun of any aspect of me you like, since you have been a class act throughout this whole fiasco.
posted by jonmc at 6:00 PM on May 9, 2006


jessamyn, I didn't know that. That one joke may be directed at you, but the sheer number of jokes and insults is overwhelming. Somehow jokes about deaf people are acceptable while ethnic slurs are not.
posted by angrybeaver at 6:03 PM on May 9, 2006


jonmc, I'm not offended. Individually, the jokes don't bother me, and I can laugh at them. But let me ask you, would you make a joke about skin pigmentation?
posted by angrybeaver at 6:05 PM on May 9, 2006


Somehow jokes about deaf people are acceptable while ethnic slurs are not.

Slurs are not the same as jokes. They may be, depending on who is telling them and why, but there is no identity between the two (pun intended).

Also, have you noticed how it seems to be less acceptable in North America to make jokes about some groups than others? Jokes about African-Americans? That's not funny! Jokes about Asians -- hahahah me love you longtime! I personally don't care -- everything is funny, when you get down to it -- but the hypocrisy of selective outrage can be a bit grating.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:09 PM on May 9, 2006


But let me ask you, would you make a joke about skin pigmentation?

nigga please.
posted by yerfatma at 6:10 PM on May 9, 2006


I think Oprah gets fat all the time just to keep her demographic of fat ass housewives.
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 6:14 PM on May 9, 2006


Yeah I had a lot of ear infections as a kid and now I can't go to noisy restaurants if I want to have a conversation with other people. Nothing too terrible but I definitely fall into the "your TV is too loud" camp. I was sort of being a wiseass about saying it had anything to do with me, but it's interesting what things you think you know about people from interacting with them for years online amd what things you just don't know.

I think this happens on MeFi from time to time, people find some group to make fun of until it suddenly becomes obvious that they're someone in the mix who has that trait, or has a close friends/relative with it. So we learn who has a retarded cousin, a spastic sibling, a transgendered uncle, or whatever. I know there's a MeFite who types all his posts with one finger, a few with MS, and at least a handful of other MeFites with various disabilities who have ben open enough to discuss them.

I always sort of wince when people who don't know their audience with that level of detail make thoughtless comments that they wouldn't make if people were sitting in the same room as them. On the other hand, as jonmc said, some people would insult you just the same if you were right there with them and the culture here has never been super-intolerant with other tasteless jokes either, unless they're directed at a particular person instead of just random snarking and bitching.

Deaf culture is really interesting because there are so many people in the "it's not a disability" camp, that making fun of someone who is Deaf and proud of it can have the same feel as making fun of someone who is too tall by calling them "Stilt". On the other hand, there are many people who don't feel that way about deafness, or their sibling/parent's/friend's deafness and so we're back to trying to, as was said in the previous MeTa thread "attain a level of civility" here which is always a bit of a balancing/guessing game of how to do it right without becoming some sort of lousy "everyone play nice" environment.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:19 PM on May 9, 2006


But let me ask you, would you make a joke about skin pigmentation?

Depends on the context and the company. My buddy Dom, (a 300+lb project raised black man, once accompanied me to a biker bar on St Paddy's Day. On his way back to our table he paused to dance with a bunch of bikers to the cheiftains coming out of the jukebox. When he saw me cracking up he said 'What's the matter? never saw a jig do a jig before?"

Now that was funny. and I felt comfortable around him making jokes like that. That's another problem with a format like mefi. It's easy to join in and invites a casual stance which can lull people into thinking that they're at the bar with close friends where things are looser than in formal conversation.
posted by jonmc at 6:20 PM on May 9, 2006


I have impaired hearing and I love deaf jokes.

Now for the heart diseased: What do infarction survivors call a big glass of Metamucil? Dessert.
posted by mischief at 6:24 PM on May 9, 2006


what
posted by cellphone at 6:28 PM on May 9, 2006


There's a wheelchair-bound comedienne who opens her shows with "Alright, which one of you motherfuckers took my parking space?"

That's humor in action, yo.
posted by jonmc at 6:28 PM on May 9, 2006


My buddy Dom, (a 300+lb project raised black man

Right, jon, but the obvious discussion (that actually addresses the point) that arises from that anecdote is whether it's different (and in what way) for you to call the guy a 'jig' than it is for him to use that word for himself, even if in both cases it's a joke.

And, further, how it's different if you're using it when speaking only to him, or to others. And what it means that he was your buddy, as opposed to a stranger.

The answer is realtively obvious, I think: that it is different, of course, but if someone is even marginally sensitive to what they say and the context in which it is said and is not autistic, they're (usually) aware of those differences.

Which is to say, it's not the words themselves that are bad, or the jokes (although the jokes can certainly be unfunny), it's the context in which they are said, to whom and by who.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:30 PM on May 9, 2006


Why can't people only be offended by things that actually offend them?
posted by smackfu at 6:33 PM on May 9, 2006


And, further, how it's different if you're using it when speaking only to him, or to others. And what it means that he was your buddy, as opposed to a stranger.

That was exactly my point, stav. The context of the humor there was made permissible by the fact of our friendship. Now here on MeFi, we talk to eachother everyday, but that dosen't neccessarily mean we 'know' eachother in the way me and Dom did, but we think we do, which can lull us in into this barroom casualness and create awkward moments.
posted by jonmc at 6:35 PM on May 9, 2006


stavros: Nice analysis but I think that's what jon meant when he said 'context'. Of course, I have been wrong before.
posted by mischief at 6:36 PM on May 9, 2006


Well, shit...
posted by mischief at 6:37 PM on May 9, 2006


This is further complicated by the fact that many of us do know eachother IRL, which muddies the waters about casual vs. formal conversational manners even more. Not making any kind of excuses or apologies, just an observation about where problems arise.
posted by jonmc at 6:42 PM on May 9, 2006


Why can't people only be offended by things that actually offend them?

Well, that's actually a good point, smackfu. We can hope that people will be responsible for the content of their own souls -- and if they are offended, that they deal with that in their own way, without demanding that other people change the ways in which they express themselves.

But in order for that to work, we also have to assume that all or most people will act in good faith, even if they're trying to be funny, and speak with a civil tongue in their heads, as my mom used to say.

Unfortunately, more and more, we can't assume the second, and so those offended feel free reign to try and regulate the speech of others, in part because there's diminishing recourse to everyday assumptions of civility.

But there's a disjunction between the failure of civility and the reaction of some to adjudicate and silence speech they find offensive. The proper reaction is to deal with their own offense, think about why they are offended, and in turn behave with as much civility as they are able in their own speech, and move on.

I reckon, at least.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:43 PM on May 9, 2006


If you think Rush (I don't mean the band) during sex was fun in your younger days, imagine those of us now with implanted defibrillators, 700 volts straight to the heart just at the peak of orgasm. Yeehah!
posted by mischief at 6:48 PM on May 9, 2006


And even in the cybersense, familiarity plays a part. Whenever I get into it with someone, I try to go look through their comment history or even their blog if they have one, just to get an idea of where they're coming from, since there are some people who from previous experience (here and elsewhere) are fucking around/playing a role/being devil's advocate etc. and others who I'm unclear about.

Culturally speaking, we're in uncharted territory here when it comes to etiquette and formality. Something to keep in mind.
posted by jonmc at 6:52 PM on May 9, 2006


smackfu, someone makes a single joke, that's fine. But when the jokes and insults keep coming, whether through ignorance or malice, then it gets frustrating.
posted by angrybeaver at 6:58 PM on May 9, 2006


and a deaf joke: Those of you who can't sign, don't you worry about that. That's what we call handicapped
posted by angrybeaver at 6:59 PM on May 9, 2006


It's not silence. We're all signing our laughs.
posted by yerfatma at 7:02 PM on May 9, 2006


As someone who was told to 'FUCK OFF' in the thread, I'll say that I've ruptured my eardrums a total of 5 time due to infections and gotten appreciable hearing loss and a penicillin allergy out of it. Not even a T-shirt.

What do you call an (xxxx) man flying a plane?

A PILOT, ya fookin' racist.
posted by Dipsomaniac at 7:04 PM on May 9, 2006


You tell people to fuck off and then you claim the high road. Then you write, "Somehow jokes about deaf people are acceptable while ethnic slurs are not" — which is bullshit. This place has been rife with jokes about race, religion, and raping children (and by the way, most of the cracks about Christians haven't been jokes).

But since you specifically mention ethnic slurs, let's point out that after YOU dropped the n-word in aforementioned thread, several people tried to lighten the mood by replying to your puffy indignance with admittedly off-color humor and no one jumped up to cry foul. So much for "ethnic slurs are not."

So really, what's the problem here? Is it that there's a huge contingent of MetaFilter intent on disparaging deaf people? Is it that we immediately and mercilessly scold anyone who throws an off-color slur while we share a hearty laugh at the expense of your selected minority? No. This whole thing is about, you're sensitive.
posted by cribcage at 7:40 PM on May 9, 2006


... "Don't be blind deaf to the ideas of others?"

I wrote that and can only speak for myself. It's a joke of course but there are layers to it. 'deaf', 'blind', 'dumb' all have uses in english beyond their first entry in the dictionary.

It was a thread about hearing, a MeTa about jonmc's level of appreciation or understanding of the non-hearing world and then someone asked: "what's the moral of the thread?"

So it's playing off all of that. I'm not defending it as a great joke, but I'll suggest, given the context overall, that in this case you're being a bit oversensitive angrybeaver.
posted by peacay at 8:00 PM on May 9, 2006


I thought we had a long-standing agreement on MeFi that the only people you can't joke about are the obese.

Could someone please write up a summary list of the verboten?

For the record, I'm half-blind (one dysfunctional eye), but it's okay for me if you tell funny jokes about the blind. Or the sighted, for that matter. And when you call someone a retard or make a joke about retards, you can rest assured that I won't think you're talking about my uncle. It's all good.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:15 PM on May 9, 2006


The proper reaction is to deal with their own offense, think about why they are offended, and in turn behave with as much civility as they are able in their own speech, and move on.
Yeah, I agree a thousand percent, but good luck with making that work in a PC world.
posted by dg at 8:15 PM on May 9, 2006


Jonmc, today you have posted 51 comments on MetaFilter, 1 post and 43 comments on MetaTalk and 1 post and 26 comments on MetaChat, for a total of two posts and 120 comments, with almost an hour left before the day is over. You are either a prodigy or a freak of nature, but either way I am impressed.
posted by LarryC at 8:15 PM on May 9, 2006


And what Stravos said. That is one of the best bits of thoughtful writing I've seen on this system.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:17 PM on May 9, 2006


Well, if he types slow, there goes his career as a serial killer.
posted by y2karl at 8:23 PM on May 9, 2006


That's for the comment above the last.
posted by y2karl at 8:23 PM on May 9, 2006


But. come to think of it, it applies in either case. So we can all feel safer.
posted by y2karl at 8:24 PM on May 9, 2006


I'm sorry, as a German, you're all subhuman scum to me anyway...
posted by klangklangston at 8:28 PM on May 9, 2006


Then why apologize, klangklangston?
posted by cgc373 at 8:39 PM on May 9, 2006


Being polite is perfunctory for Germans.
posted by klangklangston at 8:40 PM on May 9, 2006


He means he is a sorry German. A sorry no-good German.

] posted by mischief from the heart of Holland [
posted by mischief at 9:06 PM on May 9, 2006


LarryC, karl: let's just say I'm in a strange place and have nothing better to do. or so I thought. I've listened to what I'm trying to communicate be misrepresented enough that it dosen't seem to be worth the trouble to try and correct the impression anymore. It actually seems to make matters worse. And why I try to do it for an audience of people who ultimately could care less and vice versa is beyond me.
posted by jonmc at 9:12 PM on May 9, 2006


boredom, jon, simple boredom
posted by mischief at 9:16 PM on May 9, 2006


;-P
posted by mischief at 9:18 PM on May 9, 2006


You are perfectly free to be offended. Some of us were trying to add some levity to what was getting very ugly, s'all. Lighten up, smoke a bowl, and let the righteousness drain from your body. Who is to say whether any of those jokes were "anti-deaf?" I posted "can you hear me now?," in fact, to make the point that the debate was ignoring the breadth of communicative possibilities available to us all, including writing. Jeez, for a bunch of "meta" people, you'd think someone would get the joke.

But the identity politics BS is boring (and offensive to *someone*) no matter who's wielding it. If there's a substantive argument for discrimination, then make it. Symbolizing a community as its leader could reasonably be taken to require some empathy with the community's shared central experience, sure. (No doubt why the fact that the GU president was born deaf is even relevant.) That's a substantive argument, to be weighed against other questions of competence and experience.

I don't see a whole lot of irrational prejudice against the deaf these days (unlike, say, Mexicans or Arabs). I do see a lack, still, of obvious public accommodations, which represents a systematic form of discrimination that has almost nothing to do with whether there is a deaf "culture" other than that such a culture provides a basis for community activism against that systematic discrimination. Deaf culture itself is not the object of a prejudicial gaze, but rather often fascination and admiration, in my world anyway. I can't imagine an average educated American seeing a deaf person as anything less than equal, once they have had any experience at all interacting with the deaf. The human being is a complex machine, with complex interlocking capacities that develop in different ways in each individual, and compensate in many ways when forced to do so for external reasons. Sign languages are authentic fully complex human languages as any educated person should know. But it remains true that deaf people can't hear, and can't expect a majority-hearing world to give up a major channel of communication, or devote equal resources to accommodating a minority difference. We're a long way from even proportionally resourcing accommodations for the hearing-impaired and deaf, but the deaf have civil rights, with teeth. Much political discourse in the public sphere is translated into sign, and much of the rest is captioned, as is much public entertainment in the media. Deaf special education is a mandated function of our (poor for everyone but the rich) public education system, and parents are legally obliged to avail themselves of some kinds of accommodation (ironically, or not, often resisted when parents themselves are deaf and wish to raise their child in an autonomous and isolated deaf cultural world).

Just stupid debate, for the most part, in that thread. You're free to take offense, but a few jokes were definitely not the worst things being said, and arguably helped lighten the place up a little.
posted by fourcheesemac at 9:22 PM on May 9, 2006


See I was just thinking to myself that this thread is much too constructive. Thanks, klangklangston.

As a Canadian, I politely thank you for your contribution while simultaneously thinking what a complete waste of air you all are and how much better everything I do is.

:D
posted by blacklite at 9:23 PM on May 9, 2006


Actually, to be serious (gasp), I think some people are just being way too sensitive. It's just the internet, boys & girls.
posted by blacklite at 9:24 PM on May 9, 2006


cribcage, my point is that i quickly counted thirteen anti-deaf comments, contextual or otherwise, in those threads, most of which are tired old jokes. My use of the n-word , which I did not use in a disparaging way except against gigawhat, was to emphasize that these anti-deaf jokes are demeaning. You are wrong that nobody jumped up to cry foul about the racist jokes - one person did indeed say "can we chill out with the racist humour" but nobody did the same for the anti-deaf jokes. The problem is that racist humour is generally recognized as unacceptable in many walks of life, while anti-deaf humour continues. Can you point me to another metafilter thread where there were many multiple jokes made against an identifiable group?

Ironically, your joke was the only one that made me laugh out loud as it was a clever response to my comment to gigawhat. But yes it's offensive.

peacay, yes I realize your comment was contextual and the least offensive of all of them; I included as I was summarizing up every comment that could be considered anti-deaf. Also, I don't like it when I read in the newspaper, "fell on deaf ears." Formerly acceptable use of words, such as "deaf-and-dumb" (to refer to deaf-mutes) is no longer considered acceptable in polite company, and "falling on deaf ears" is headed in that direction.
posted by angrybeaver at 9:38 PM on May 9, 2006


would you make a joke about skin pigmentation?

I've got red hair and freckles. People call me a white guy, and I state simply that I am Polka-Dots.
Is it wrong that I see jokes about people of other color, white included with equal distain?
posted by Balisong at 9:43 PM on May 9, 2006


fourcheesemac, yes there is plenty of irrational prejudice against the deaf. For example, I applied for a job at an engineering firm and put a friend's phone number on my resume. They called my friend and said that they were interested in interviewing me, and when they asked why I didn't place my phone number on the resume, my friend told them I was deaf. All of a sudden, they didn't want to interview me anymore.

And just try to find an apartment for rent. For some reason most landlords will hang up when I call them through the message relay service.
posted by angrybeaver at 9:53 PM on May 9, 2006


You are wrong that nobody jumped up to cry foul about the racist jokes - one person did indeed say...

Emphasis added.

The problem is that racist humour is generally recognized as unacceptable...

No, it isn't. I'll grant you that it's regarded as "offensive" to a greater degree than jokes about deaf people, but that doesn't mean it's avoided; on the contrary, "offensive" usually translates to "edgy." Your basic premise is that (a) there has been an inordinate flood of deaf jokes, and (b) this is exceptional, because offensive humor is rare on MetaFilter. Both are false.

Can you point me to another metafilter thread where there were many multiple jokes made against an identifiable group?

This should get you started.

If the deaf want to cry "Persecution!" on MetaFilter, they're going to have to get in line.
posted by cribcage at 10:19 PM on May 9, 2006


: What is it with all the anti-deaf comments in these two threads?

Deaf comedy jam?
posted by dgaicun at 10:20 PM on May 9, 2006


As much as we'd all like to believe that MetaFilter is a friendly place and we all love each other, maybe it'd be better to work from the assumption that what we say here is equivalent in context and audience to things we might say in a diverse and crowded bar. That is, assuming you're a reasonably kind person, you'd probably avoid making loud and offensive jokes not necessarily because you don't find them funny or are a prude but because you're polite enough to understand that those jokes piss some people off a lot.

Instead of getting all uppity towards angrybeaver about something that clearly makes him (her?) quite upset, maybe we could be a little civil, apologize, and try and watch what we say next time. "Freedom of Speech" isn't the same thing as "Freedom to be Rude" (or, for that matter, "Freedom to be funny"). If you've got a really hilarious joke that involves you (a non-member of group x) disparaging members of group x, maybe you could preface it with an apology or something, at least to acknowledge that some wouldn't like the joke.

I know that a lot of you thinks that kind of reflexive politeness cramps your style, but are those three seconds of laughter really worth pissing off a community member that much? It's not about enforcing speech codes, it's about being accommodating to what is now quite a large and heterogenous population of people.
posted by maxreax at 10:56 PM on May 9, 2006


Oh, and angrybeaver, FWIW, when I asked people to stop making the racist jokes (which were admittedly vaguely funny) I didn't mention the deaf jokes because you seemed to have that pretty well-covered. I didn't mean to condone them, although I see how I may have implicitly done that.
posted by maxreax at 10:58 PM on May 9, 2006


Deaf comedy jam?

Now that's original. I can appreciate that one.

No, no, maxreax, reflexive politeness would ruin this website. Btw, thank you for your second comment, I appreciate that.
posted by angrybeaver at 11:32 PM on May 9, 2006


"would you make a joke about skin pigmentation?"
There was a young lady from Bude
who had scenes of old England tattooed.
Her boyfriend, one day
went the whole Penine Way
with Cheddar Gorge still to be viewed.
-Romper
And an off-topic freebie:
There once was a man who was not very kind,
he used his penis instead of his mind,
one day he bent over,
and his dog took over,
giving him a bone from behind.
-zd
posted by mischief at 11:32 PM on May 9, 2006


If a mute swears, does his mother wash his hands with soap?
posted by Balisong at 11:46 PM on May 9, 2006


OK, I guess I'll post the list that's from..
For those who love the philosophy of hypocrisy and ambiguity...A few statements to ponder... George Carlin Quotes:

1. Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things.

2. One tequila, two tequila, three tequila, floor.

3. Atheism is a non-prophet organization.

4. If man evolved from monkeys and apes, why do we still have monkeys and apes?

5. The main reason Santa is so jolly is because he knows where all the bad girls live.

6. I went to a bookstore and asked the sales woman, "Where's the self-help section?" She said if she told me, it would defeat the purpose.

7. Could it be that all those trick-or-treaters wearing sheets aren't going as ghosts, but as mattresses?

8. If a mute swears, does his mother wash his hands with soap?

9. If a man is standing in the middle of the forest speaking and there is no woman around to hear him . . . is he still wrong?

10. If someone with multiple personalities threatens to kill himself, is it considered a hostage situation?

11. Is there another word for synonym?

12. Isn't it a bit unnerving that doctors call what they do "practice?"

13. Where do forest rangers go to "get away from it all?"

14. What do you do when you see an endangered animal eating an endangered plant?

15. If a parsley farmer is sued, can they garnish his wages?

16. Would a fly without wings be called a walk?

17. Why do they lock gas station bathrooms? Are they afraid someone will clean them?

18. If a turtle doesn't have a shell, is he homeless or naked?

19. Why don't sheep shrink when it rains?

20. Can vegetarians eat animal crackers?

21. If the police arrest a mime, do they tell him he has the right to remain silent?

22. Why do they put Braille on the drive-through bank machines?

23. How do blind people know when they are done wiping?

24. How do they get the deer to cross at that yellow road sign?

25. Is it true that cannibals don't eat clowns because they taste funny?

26. What was the best thing before sliced bread?

27. One nice thing about egotists: they don't talk about other people.

28. To be intoxicated is to feel sophisticated, but not be able to say it.

29. Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

30. The older you get, the better you realize you were.

31. Age is a very high price to pay for maturity.

32. Procrastination is the art of keeping up with yesterday.

33. Women like silent men, they think they're listening.

34. Men are from Earth, women are from Earth. Deal with it.

35. Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach him how to fish, and he will sit in a boat and drink beer all day.

36. Do pediatricians play miniature golf on Wednesdays?

37. Before they invented drawing boards, what did they go back to?

38. Do infants enjoy infancy as much as adults enjoy adultery?

39. If all the world is a stage, where is the audience sitting?

40. If God dropped acid, would he see people?

41. If one synchronized swimmer drowns, do the rest have to drown too?

42. If the #2 pencil is the most popular, why is it still #2?

43. If work is so terrific, how come they have to pay you to do it?

44. If you ate pasta and antipasta, would you still be hungry?

45. If you try to fail, and succeed, which have you done?

46. Why is it called tourist season if we can't shoot at them?
posted by Balisong at 11:48 PM on May 9, 2006


There is an external factor here which may or may not have heightened my sensitivity. Last week, during a smoke break, a woman said to me "my nephew is deaf. he talks funny too." I know that her comment was thoughtless and not malicious, but it has bothered me since. *a lot*

I only wish that I had replied, "yeah i know what you mean, my aunt is morbidly obese too."
posted by angrybeaver at 11:51 PM on May 9, 2006


Instead of getting all uppity towards angrybeaver...

Considering that he told me to "fuck off" — before turning around and admitting that he had laughed at my joke — I think I've been remarkably polite. I haven't noticed anyone else being overtly rude toward him, either; yet back in the parent thread, he's back at it. His position seems to be: "Why can't y'all just be civil? Fuck off, you bunch of dickheads."

Under different circumstances, this MeTa thread would have gone to the wolves hours ago. A post like yours smacks of "go easy on the deaf guy," which I'd think would be more offensive than a couple of light-hearted jokes.
posted by cribcage at 11:52 PM on May 9, 2006


balisong, meh.
posted by angrybeaver at 11:52 PM on May 9, 2006


cribcage, klangklangston's helen keller jokes are stupid and pointless.
posted by angrybeaver at 11:53 PM on May 9, 2006


wow, you're sensitive to being told "fuck off".
posted by angrybeaver at 11:54 PM on May 9, 2006


What?
posted by cribcage at 12:00 AM on May 10, 2006



;)
posted by angrybeaver at 12:03 AM on May 10, 2006


cribcage, ?
posted by angrybeaver at 12:07 AM on May 10, 2006


Considering that he told me to "fuck off" — before turning around and admitting that he had laughed at my joke — I think I've been remarkably polite. I haven't noticed anyone else being overtly rude toward him, either; yet back in the parent thread, he's back at it. His position seems to be: "Why can't y'all just be civil? Fuck off, you bunch of dickheads."

Putting aside for a moment that deafness and race are totally different things with different cultural connotations, replace "deaf" with "black." Imagine angrybeaver was one of maybe a handful of people on MetaFilter of African descent and people were throwing around casually racist and offensive comments. Who would blame him for getting heated? I'm glad no one is "overtly rude" but that doesn't mean the jokes or comments were appropriate, just that no harm was intended (although clearly it was caused).

And in all honesty, what right have you to tell angrybeaver that he's being "too sensitive"? It's unfortunate that he's not being exactingly consistent or exceedingly polite, but come on--the shit clearly rattled the guy, and he's acknowledging that he's not a model of decency right now.

Also, FWIW, I do indeed advocate a higher level of politeness than angrybeaver does, so those of you campaigning for your right to make fun of various groups shouldn't conflate us as being part of the same camp.
posted by maxreax at 12:11 AM on May 10, 2006


people were throwing around casually racist and offensive comments - You've put your finger directly on what's been bothering me. Thank you and goodnight.
posted by angrybeaver at 12:20 AM on May 10, 2006


maxreax, angrybeaver: Your comments here plainly display that neither of you have been around MeFi very long. Neither of you yet realize that this community has virtually no restrictions when it comes to poking fun.
posted by mischief at 12:23 AM on May 10, 2006


You are wrong that nobody jumped up to cry foul about the racist jokes - one person did indeed say "can we chill out with the racist humour" but nobody did the same for the anti-deaf jokes.

Nobody? You seem to have that pretty well covered.
posted by juv3nal at 2:42 AM on May 10, 2006


You do realize that metatalk is the home of the "Nigger Trifecta", right? We butcher sacred cows for sport.

This the constant internet snark showdown. It never ends, and everything is fair game. It was ever thus.
posted by beth at 4:51 AM on May 10, 2006


"Everyone here can hear right?"

I see you've chosen part of a comment I made... therefore I will defend (likely unnecessarily). This sentence, even read out of context here, is clearly not a "joke" or anywhere even CLOSE to being anti-deaf. I find that my comment being labeled as such, extremely annoying. If one isn't anti-black, anti-immigrant, anti-muslim, anti-gay... shit, now anti-deaf? Is there such a thing as anti-deaf?

Read in context of the original thread, my comment makes PERFECT sense. So stick this anti-deaf-joking-thing up your ass. I'm sick of everyone's (feigned) excessive sensitivity to everything.
posted by Witty at 5:20 AM on May 10, 2006


As much as we'd all like to believe that MetaFilter is a friendly place and we all love each other, maybe it'd be better to work from the assumption that what we say here is equivalent in context and audience to things we might say in a diverse and crowded bar.... Instead of getting all uppity towards angrybeaver about something that clearly makes him (her?) quite upset, maybe we could be a little civil, apologize, and try and watch what we say next time.

Flagged as fantastic. Yes, it's idealistic, and the community will never live up to that standard, but it's important to keep reminding people of it. It's possible to be cool and considerate, believe it or not.

Neither of you yet realize that this community has virtually no restrictions when it comes to poking fun.

I think you meant to say:
Neither of you yet realize that I personally have virtually no restrictions when it comes to poking fun.
posted by languagehat at 5:29 AM on May 10, 2006


As much as we'd all like to believe that MetaFilter is a friendly place and we all love each other, maybe it'd be better to work from the assumption that what we say here is equivalent in context and audience to things we might say in a diverse and crowded bar.

with the exception, of course, that no one's going to take us out in the parking lot and kick our asses

FUCK OFF!

i think that's incredibly insensitive to eunuchs
posted by pyramid termite at 6:05 AM on May 10, 2006


You are at a bar. You and some acquintances have been talking a bit loud and a bit loose, and you realize that you've said something which has has offended someone, even though you were only trying to be amusing. You feel pretty innocent, but suddenly it looks like you're going to have to address this person, as eyes turn towards your group..

If you apologize casually and try to explain you meant no disrespect, and tone it down for awhile at least, turn to page 21.

If you think it should be clear that you really meant no harm and this person is just some kind of scold breaking the assumption of good faith, which irks you slightly, put him in his place and turn to 3. At any later time you may show the offended person your regular-joe side as a sort of less public apology by going to page 45.

If you try to joke it off with something that you would consider truly offensive (probably using the word 'nigger') by way of clever, succinct counterpoint, turn to page 36. To make it cryptic and to hell with the people who don't get it, turn to page 20122.

If you think this is actually worth discussing seriously with this person, drift to a quiet corner of the bar and turn to page 10.

If you're having a bad day and suddenly worried that everyone is seeing you as some kind of asshole and this'd be a good time to have a flameout, rip up this book and flush it down the toilet.

If the whole situation reminds you of an interesting bit of your life that touches upon one or more of the topics of talking in bars, offensiveness, or similar situations people get in, or the concept of social situations, or really just anything, keep talking and go to page 8.

posted by fleacircus at 7:03 AM on May 10, 2006


What do you call a xxxx xxxxx man?

Humourless, in all likelihood.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:45 AM on May 10, 2006


"the community will never live up to that standard, but ..."

... at least it's good for the occasional chuckle.
posted by mischief at 11:20 AM on May 10, 2006


So, a priest, a rabbi, and skin pigmentation walk into a bar...
posted by staggernation at 11:45 AM on May 10, 2006


A few statements to ponder... George Carlin

He totally ripped those off from Mike Barnicle.
posted by staggernation at 11:48 AM on May 10, 2006



posted by antifreez_ at 11:50 AM on May 10, 2006


The Aristocrats!!

ta-da.
posted by seanyboy at 3:05 PM on May 10, 2006


Dear Everybody,

It seems that the collective mob intelligence of Metafilter has determined that I am an overly sensitive whinging prat. I will accept their judgement.

I apologize to cribcage, Dipsomaniac, Witty, jonmc, fourcheesemac and all other commentators I flagged in my initial posting, for saying that their comments were anti-deaf. None of their comments could be considered overly anti-deaf, or a slur, or beyond the expected norms of Metafilter. And yes, Witty, anti-deaf is something I made up as I could not think of a better term.

I can only wait and hope for these commentators to inevitably say something stupid so that i may join the pile-on and with all probability that they will accept it with better humour and grace than I have.

I believe what irritated me the most was the casual nature of the comments and the lack of awareness that they could be considered offensive (as opposed to racist comments). For example a pet peeve of mine is "falls on deaf ears". I do not expect anyone here to understand why; but my feeling is that that phrase ascribes a negative trait onto something that I cannot control.

The fark.com thread on the Gallaudet University was much much more offensive and way funnier. Most of the jokes here were old recycled turds that fell flat. But at least nobody here wrote in all capital letters. Please try harder.

I do appreciate the constructive comments of jessamyn, jonmc and maxreax. Thank you.

Regards,
angrybeaver

PS - if anyone would like to comment further or ask questions in the original Gallaudet thread, I will be around. But otherwise, I think I will take a bit of a break from Metafilter.
posted by angrybeaver at 6:32 PM on May 10, 2006


What, no follow-ups? I thought people might have something to say about my apologia or make some more jokes.

Let me begin: five fresh fish, you're half blind in one eye? And you drive? Now that's scary.

(ok maybe not very funny).
posted by angrybeaver at 10:27 PM on May 11, 2006


Unless you're saying that your apology wasn't sincere, what is there to respond to? That being said, I don't think you can even classify my comment as "casual nature" or with "lack of awareness". But there's no sense in arguing about it.

I was basically told that my opinion in the Mefi thread didn't matter because I wasn't deaf. So I simply suggested that "since everyone here (meaning, in that thread) can hear" (which was an assumption of course, but only for the sake of debate), then we might as well close the thread and move elsewhere, as if only deaf people can discuss deaf people issues.

It wasn't meant to be anything more than EXACTLY what the words themselves say. It wasn't a meant to be a play on words or anything else of the sort and therefore, unfairly chosen for your list... which is why I'm defending it.
posted by Witty at 9:59 AM on May 12, 2006


angry: the licensing department seems perfectly cool with it.

Last time I had my eyes checked (twenty-odd years ago) I had 20:200 in my left and 20:15 in my right. 20:200 qualifies as "legally blind," though it isn't actually blind so much as Very Blurry.

As I've aged the lense shapes are changing. I know my right eye isn't as sharp as it used to be, though casual testing indicates it's still very acute; my left eye is becoming better at long distances, and thus is becoming less "blind."

So, truthfully, I'm probably no longer able to legitimately claim a level of blindness in my left eye.

Anyway, if you know good jokes about bad eyes, go for it. I'll be able to deal with it.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:32 AM on May 12, 2006


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