Tony Snow's "Tar Baby" Comment

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posted on May, 23 2006 @ 12:07 AM
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I disagree. It is an issue about a word that has a historical significance to a group of people. It also examines the use of such a word from someone outside of that group of people without thinking about its social implications.

And when questioned about the word, the said person (Tony Snow) could only mumble that is from "American folklore". Precisely, he's correct. But unfortunately for him, he did not exercise the full range of his vocabulary to express himself better in front of the public.

It would be one thing if you said this expression privately in your house where only the immediate family could hear you.

It is yet another when you represent the POTUS and you are answering questions for him in the public eye. Aren't Black people Americans too? Don't they also need to be considered in his address to the "citizens of the United States"?

In one of the sources I posted, the author expressed a desire to be a fly on the wall when hearing what Dr. Rice would have said to Mr. Snow after his remark.

I too would have liked to have been a fly on the wall to listen to that conversation.



[edit on 23-5-2006 by ceci2006]




posted on May, 23 2006 @ 12:51 AM
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So does the word spaz. Have you ever used the word spaz before? I have and in no way was I using it as a derogatory term against people with a real disease like cerebral palsy, which is where the word apparently comes from. Context is key.



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 01:09 AM
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No, I haven't used "spaz", but I've heard of the term. And you're right. It does have to do with the context in which it is used. And you're right. I've realized that sometimes people are too sensitive about words. But, how would you feel if someone threw around a term you didn't like without thinking about its context? It would bother you, would it not?

Look. Most undoubtedly, Tony Snow has gotten his hands slapped. He was ostrasized for a few days by the Bush administration. But he'll be forgiven and back in the swing of things.

However, it is important to note that "tar baby" as well as "spaz" are terms that have associations to certain people that are negative. Just that recognition alone is enough. All that I truly ask is that people think before they speak and use their ability to express themselves thoughtfully.

That's all.

[edit on 23-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 01:28 AM
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Since you want these things to be pointed out then I should point out that the term "black people" which you use two posts ago is outdated and offensive to some Americans. If you are referring to people of African decent in the USA the correct term is now African American.



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 02:03 AM
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Thank you for your opinion. I will take that into consideration.



[edit on 23-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 04:55 AM
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Originally posted by ceci2006
I disagree. It is an issue about a word that has a historical significance to a group of people.

Well, I'm still not going to go to them anymore. Never know who I'd offend.


It also examines the use of such a word from someone outside of that group of people without thinking about its social implications.

This is both puzzling and ironic. It implies that it is OK for someone from inside the group to use that term. As if it should be less offensive. And it also implies that all inside members are completely educated as to the origins of the term and the nuance associated with it.


And when questioned about the word, the said person (Tony Snow) could only mumble that is from "American folklore". Precisely, he's correct. But unfortunately for him, he did not exercise the full range of his vocabulary to express himself better in front of the public.

He probably assumed that he was conversing with educated people who understood the origins of the term, and that it was not necessary to explain away the term.

He quickly realized that he needs to learn to walk on eggshells because there are those who disregard the message in their pursuit of verbal injury.


In one of the sources I posted, the author expressed a desire to be a fly on the wall when hearing what Dr. Rice would have said to Mr. Snow after his remark.

My guess is that she didn't take offense. She is an educated, literate, articulate woman. After the chuckle, she probably said something like "Welcome to the White House".



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 05:59 AM
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Originally posted by ceci2006
Tony Snow has gotten his hands slapped. He was ostrasized
for a few days by the Bush administration.

Proof? Links? Credible news sources??
Come on. Let's see them.


But he'll be forgiven and back in the swing of things.

'back in the swing of things'? Give proof, links, credible
news sources that he was out of the swing of things.



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 06:30 AM
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CECI:

You must provide the links were Tony Snow got in trouble for saying "tar baby"

I'm waiting. I'd love to see that.

You shouldnt be sleeping- its late and you got work to do here.



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 06:39 AM
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Originally posted by zerotime
Context is key.


Indeed! I remember during the 60's when the flower children adopted the cirle with the inverted, broken cross as a peace symbol. The religious community was agahst at the horrible people for displaying an inverted broken cross. However, the symbol stayed and most people who see it interpret it as a peace symbol.

Same case for the swastika. Originally a cross, the swastika is now perceived as a symbol of evil.

A person's exposure to and experience with words and symbols is the basis for that context. We cannot know what is in the heart of others. A slip of the tongue has been the demise for many celebrities. Remember Howard Cosell's unfortunate remark?

People need to stop being so thin skinned and assuming the worst in others.



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 07:11 AM
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jsobecky, dgtempe and darkelf,

Thank you so much for your replies. They are good questions. I will answer them in full and provide you with links about Tony Snow. Sorry dg, it's still early here from where I am and today is a little bit hectic. So, "I'll get back to work" when I have time and give you some more information to shed some light.

Until then, take care ! May your day be filled with great posts!


[edit on 23-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 01:55 PM
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You left us with a cliffhanger, Ceci.

I hope you can answer our ??????



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 02:03 PM
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He's a Republican he can say whatever he wants! I don't get it, one of those liberal rappers talks about killing and doing drugs while saying the N word no problem, Tony SNow says Tar Baby and you all get upset.



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 07:03 PM
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Ceci i sure hope you dont believe that white privilege nonsense you posted. I remember a while back Eddie Murphy had a skit on SNL about him dressing and coloring himself up as a white guy and then going on job interviews as himself one time and then again to the same interview as the white guy and how the interviewers would joke with him and give him preferencial treatment as the white guy and shun him as the black guy. It was a very funny skit because he was so obviously exagerrating this point. I assure you there is no secret white conspiracy to hold back minorities (darker skinned people). If anything, people of color have wayyyy more opportunity afforded to them than whites. They get into college much easier, they get scholarships that we cant get, they get preferential hiring for government jobs, they get special organizations dedicated to their advancement (NAACP), etc, etc, etc. I should know this myself since i was discriminated against for a job as a police officer fresh out of college since the force was only hiring women and minorities at that time.

Please dont tell me about white privilege, because nobody has given me a thing just because i was born with white skin. People need to start holding their own selves responsible for the outcome of their lives and stop blaming others who have done nothing but try to help. Sheesh, some people... *sigh*



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 09:25 PM
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Before I post some more proof and answer your questions, I just have one thing to say to Escromutus. I'm sorry that you feel that way. And of course, there are others that feel the way you do. Just chalk it up to some unbelievable nonsense and go about your day. But I have a challenge for you.

Why not throw around tar baby in a Black neighborhood or to Black folk in general to show your good will. And while you're at it, talk about "white male privilege" as a "conspiracy". I would be fascinated to hear what they say to you.

I'm sure when you address other African-Americans in that matter, they'll welcome your views with open arms. In fact, they'll probably agree with your views and say that you're right. After all, a word or concept that is not intelligible should be treated as such, shouldn't it?

So don't worry yourself with what I think and put yourself to the test. I'm sure you'll be proven right.

And about zerotime's observation about the word "Black": The terminology around African-Americans have changed throughout the decade. In the early part of the 20th century, it was "Negro". Then, it was "Black" (i.e., "Black is Beautiful"). And now it is "African-American". And even within some circles, there is discussion about eliminating all the "hyphenated" words attributed to ethnicty (i.e., Asian-Americans, Mexican-Americans, Italian-Americans, Irish-Americans, etc.).

However, when making your observation about the offensiveness of the word "Black", have you asked other African-Americans about this notion to see how they feel about this word? I'd be interested to know.

To everyone else: I will make sure to put on a case to prove my point.









[edit on 23-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 10:13 PM
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Originally posted by ceci2006
I'm sorry that you feel that way. And of course, there are others that feel the way you do. Just chalk it up to some unbelievable nonsense and go about your day.


Consider it chalked as nonsense and i am going about my day very well so far about to head off to bed.


Why not throw around tar baby in a Black neighborhood or to Black folk in general to show your good will. And while you're at it, talk about "white male privilege" as a "conspiracy". I would be fascinated to hear what they say to you.


That would be real intelligent to do that and have it taken out of context. It was very clear to me and anyone listening to Tony Snow that he was talking about being caught up in a sticky situation when he made that remark. Why are we even talking about this when you and I both know what he meant? As far as white privilege is concerned, i would explain to them the same thing i just explained to you.


I'm sure when you address other African-Americans in that matter, they'll welcome your views with open arms. In fact, they'll probably agree with your views and say that you're right. After all, a word or concept that is not intelligible should be treated as such, shouldn't it?


If they are intelligent and not closed minded and bigoted then they will know what i am talking about and that it is NOT a racist term in the manner that Mr. Snow used it. It could be construed as a racist term out of context only by someone trying to start some trouble ONLY because tar just happens to be black. If tar was white and someone said "tar baby" would i then have an excuse to run around and scream racism? Please.


So don't worry yourself with what I think and put yourself to the test. I'm sure you'll be proven right.


Im not worried at all. Im 6'1" 200 pounds of muscle and can handle myself if i am ever attacked by people looking to carry out a hate crime against me because im white.

Not everything in this world is about race, and not every white guy is out to get you. Sure there are still some oldschool ignorant types out there, but then again there are some black people that are out to get whites too so that door swings both ways. We all have much bigger fish to fry in today's day and age than to let race get in the way. It's time to man up and take responsibility for our own futures instead of passing the buck and playing the race card at every turn.

Peace



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 10:19 PM
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Well, I'm agreeing with your assessment. You shouldn't worry about this "nut with issues" anymore. But anyway, I'd like to be humored. Talk about "tar babies" all you want around Black people and see if you sleep well. I'd still be interested in what they have to say to you. After all, this is a non-issue and you are treating it as such.

By all means, treat it as a non-issue around Black people. Say whatever you want. They'll be smart enough to see that you meant what you said.

Btw, I don't think that every White person is out to get me. But I guess your opinion has more weight here.




[edit on 23-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 10:30 PM
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And "man up" you say? All I can say to you is that you sorely need to be in a situation in which you are the only White person in a place filled with another race before you can say such things. And when the other race talks about you in a derogatory fashion, you'd be screaming wildly about how your rights are being violated. And how you're not being heard. And of course, they would probably peg you as a "nut with issues".

But no matter. You'd never be brave enough to put yourself in such a situation.

[edit on 23-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 10:38 PM
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i honestly dont see why or how you could compare the use of "tar baby" when clearly meant as a sticky situation (remember that context thingee we talked about earlier) to "cracker" or "honkey" which are 2 clearly racist terms used to describe white people. Now if i was to use the N word then yeah that would compare to "cracker" but not tar baby when it was clearly used to describe A STICKY SITUATION....Remember that tar is black right? Are we not to use any words that are known to be black in color for this reason? Is asphalt off limits now? What about skunk? Perhaps crow or bat?

Just for you im posting the link to the websters definition of context. Please read it and then you might understand why your post is irrelevant. I'm done giving you points which is probably your main reason for this non-issue thread anyway...



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 10:45 PM
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And please read about "white male privilege" from the point of view of a white man. Since people of color do not have any intellectual weight in your world, I'd just had to go with one of your own--Robert Jensen from the University of Texas:


White Privilege Shapes the U.S.

I am sitting in my University of Texas office, talking to a very bright and very conservative white student about affirmative action in college admissions, which he opposes and I support. The student says he wants a level playing field with no unearned advantages for anyone. I ask him whether he thinks that in the United States being white has advantages. Have either of us, I ask, ever benefited from being white in a world run mostly by white people? Yes, he concedes, there is something real and tangible we could call white privilege. So, if we live in a world of white privilege--unearned white privilege--how does that affect your notion of a level playing field? I ask.

He paused for a moment and said, "That really doesn't matter."


That statement, I suggested to him, reveals the ultimate white privilege: the privilege to acknowledge you have unearned privilege but ignore what it means. That exchange led me to rethink the way I talk about race and racism with students. It drove home to me the importance of confronting the dirty secret that we white people carry around with us everyday: In a world of white privilege, some of what we have is unearned.
[...]

White privilege, like any social phenomenon, is complex. In a white supremacist culture, all white people have privilege, whether or not they are overtly racist themselves. There are general patterns, but such privilege plays out differently depending on context and other aspects of one's identity (in my case, being male gives me other kinds of privilege). Rather than try to tell others how white privilege has played out in their lives, I talk about how it has affected me.



posted on May, 23 2006 @ 10:49 PM
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But the use of "cracker" and "honkey" clearly bothers you, doesn't it? And if I were to call you a "good cracker" and say, that I would sleep well at night, you'd be screaming to the high heavens.

Did you ever think that is what "tar baby" means to me?

Or did it ever cross your mind?

Maybe you should read your own terminology of "context" and think that the use of "cracker" and "honkey" is a non-issue. Or better yet, you're a "nut with issues" if you think that "honkey" and "cracker" are words that bother you. Don't worry. Not every Black person is out to get you.

Besides, "honkey" might be a pet term for a horn. And "cracker" is something you eat. Could that be the case? [*sarcasm on*] I certainly don't see why you're so disturbed.[*sarcasm off*]





[edit on 23-5-2006 by ceci2006]





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