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Author Topic: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?  (Read 15665 times)

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85283-071

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #60 on: September 24, 2008, 03:36:41 PM »

I have discussed lineage with many people in the flesh. I have never, ever encountered a person who was bothered by it. I'm have blonde hair. You could call that a label, or you could just call it a fact. So, what is the difference? It's a fact. It's a label. How do we decide when facts become labels? The difference has to do with how that information is processed. By reacting to the idea in a hostile manner, you are assuming the worst interpretation there is. You are letting it be an issue. People speak according to their perspectives. If you hold it against them, you have issues as big as theirs... probably bigger. If you let it stir you to violence, you are an asshole.

THAT'S a label.

We are not all different, in that we live in a global community with increasing similarites.


To be similar, something must be different. To increase in similarity, something must have been even more different. Also, you could argue that, in many ways, people are as different as they ever were. It all depends on the markers you use.
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Andy Pants

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #61 on: September 24, 2008, 08:58:18 PM »

APPLAUDS.

You've successfully insulted me without answering any of my questions and shirking the issue entirely.

Youy sir are the asshole.
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85283-071

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #62 on: September 24, 2008, 09:09:42 PM »

You didn't ask me the questions. My answer would be, "Nothing" to all those questions. What if? What if you like french food, but your father lives in Spain? What if you wear traditional Japanese clothing... but in Nebraska? Does that make it plainswear?

What's your nationality/ethnicity/background?

That was the question. No one asked, "What stereotype do you fit, and which set of notions can wwe apply to you instead of judging you on your personal merits?"

You added that spirit to it. I am criticizing you because you are being reactionary.
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Kovacs

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #63 on: September 24, 2008, 09:30:25 PM »

Quote
But this whole 'let's do a roll-call of the different races of people here' thing seems a little bit more nazi death-camp procedure than enlightened discussion

I think that just refuted every argument you might be proposing. Really? I see what you're getting at, but man, you're really drawing some conclusions about the people asking this question.

In fact, I'd say you're doing the generalization here, assuming that if I ask someone where they're from I'm immediately labeling them.

I had a conversation with my coworker from Germany today about her trip to said country. We've discussed her culture on several occasions, all friendly and insightful. Another coworker is Iranian, and we discuss his culture all the time. You would never have these conversations.

I really think you're limiting yourself by taking this as such a bad thing. If someone asked you about your heritage in an effort to get to know you better, you'd react with violence? Who has the problem exactly?
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Andy Pants

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #64 on: September 24, 2008, 09:45:57 PM »

I am criticizing you because you are being reactionary.

Maybe you should try criticising me based on my arguments and their merit instead.

What's your nationality/ethnicity/background?

That was the question.

I know that was the question. I am expressing the opinion that that question is flawed as nationality tells you nothing about a person unless you like to stereotype people. Nations are not rigid social constructs with one particular set of cultural ideas.

I am also arguing that ethnicity doesn't actually exist, it is an imagined disctinction, which is a concept you seem incapable of comprehending and have attacked but haven't provided even a basic argument against. Are you seriously arguing that your ethnicity is blonde? This isn't a thread about hair colour. It's a thread about the supposed concept of ethnicity. And so your argument proves nothing.

My ethnicity is human, my nationality is irrelevant. If you'd have bothered to actually read my posts. You would already understand that this is the argument I am trying to make. But then I think you do understand this, you're just attacking me (not criticing as you don't actually have any criticisms) as you said, for being 'reactionary'. In other words for having a different opinion to most of the people here. I think this makes you the hostile asshole not me.
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Musings

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #65 on: September 24, 2008, 10:04:48 PM »

Trying arguing to someone who is from a country in a civil war that ethnicity and nationality does not matter.
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Andy Pants

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #66 on: September 24, 2008, 10:12:26 PM »

Quote
But this whole 'let's do a roll-call of the different races of people here' thing seems a little bit more nazi death-camp procedure than enlightened discussion

I think that just refuted every argument you might be proposing. Really? I see what you're getting at, but man, you're really drawing some conclusions about the people asking this question.

In fact, I'd say you're doing the generalization here, assuming that if I ask someone where they're from I'm immediately labeling them.

I had a conversation with my coworker from Germany today about her trip to said country. We've discussed her culture on several occasions, all friendly and insightful. Another coworker is Iranian, and we discuss his culture all the time. You would never have these conversations.

I really think you're limiting yourself by taking this as such a bad thing. If someone asked you about your heritage in an effort to get to know you better, you'd react with violence? Who has the problem exactly?

I feel like I'm talking to the void.

Just because my nationality has almost nothing to do with my culture doesn't mean that I don't have a culture. The problem is in the presumption that these things are one and the same. Not all people hold the idea that they are somehow defined by their heritage. The assumption that they do is the problem, and the problem is (amongst others) yours. Perhaps it's a problem of greater society in general? I don't know, I wouldn't have the relevant statistics to back that up.
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Andy Pants

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #67 on: September 24, 2008, 10:17:31 PM »

Trying arguing to someone who is from a country in a civil war that ethnicity and nationality does not matter.

That doesn't make any sense. In a COUNTRY in the midst of civil war everyone would still technically have the same nationality. For this reason they would probably be even more inclined to argue that nationality is irrelevant. And ethnicity would still be an imagined construct, only possible more rigidly enforced.
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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #68 on: September 24, 2008, 10:25:26 PM »

The merit of your argument? You are implying that there is something sinister in a conversation about lineage and the geographic and cultural ancestry of individuals. I (and others) are pointing out that such conversations take place all the time without sinister overtures. It is just conversation. From that perspective, your argument has no merit. What point are you making that I would have to counter? That race is a social construct? You're preaching to the choir. I don't believe that there is really such a thing as race. That cultural background does not define someone? I have felt that way for decades. I agree with many of your premises, but they do not add up to your conclusion.
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Kovacs

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #69 on: September 24, 2008, 10:28:23 PM »

Quote
But this whole 'let's do a roll-call of the different races of people here' thing seems a little bit more nazi death-camp procedure than enlightened discussion

I think that just refuted every argument you might be proposing. Really? I see what you're getting at, but man, you're really drawing some conclusions about the people asking this question.

In fact, I'd say you're doing the generalization here, assuming that if I ask someone where they're from I'm immediately labeling them.

I had a conversation with my coworker from Germany today about her trip to said country. We've discussed her culture on several occasions, all friendly and insightful. Another coworker is Iranian, and we discuss his culture all the time. You would never have these conversations.

I really think you're limiting yourself by taking this as such a bad thing. If someone asked you about your heritage in an effort to get to know you better, you'd react with violence? Who has the problem exactly?

I feel like I'm talking to the void.

Just because my nationality has almost nothing to do with my culture doesn't mean that I don't have a culture. The problem is in the presumption that these things are one and the same. Not all people hold the idea that they are somehow defined by their heritage. The assumption that they do is the problem, and the problem is (amongst others) yours. Perhaps it's a problem of greater society in general? I don't know, I wouldn't have the relevant statistics to back that up.

Huh. When did I say they were defined by it? You're again, assuming that if I ask that question, I'm placing this person into a role. I'm not, I'm trying to get to know them better. Its an aspect of peoples culture in most cases, and a valid question to ask that leads to a lot of insight. It's not as angry a question as you're making it out to be.

You're taking your case of vehemently not being defined by your heritage and being pretty irrational about it, honestly.
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Andy Pants

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #70 on: September 24, 2008, 10:38:52 PM »

The merit of your argument? You are implying that there is something sinister in a conversation about lineage and the geographic and cultural ancestry of individuals. I (and others) are pointing out that such conversations take place all the time without sinister overtures. It is just conversation. From that perspective, your argument has no merit. What point are you making that I would have to counter? That race is a social construct? You're preaching to the choir. I don't believe that there is really such a thing as race. That cultural background does not define someone? I have felt that way for decades. I agree with many of your premises, but they do not add up to your conclusion.

I disagree. Just because the stereotyping is subliminal doesn't necessarily mean it isn't there. The problem is caused by the way we view these various concepts as rigid and definitive.

I understand that it's a minority viewpoint but I reserve the right to this opinion as I don't believe simply being in the minority is reason enough to discredit this particular idea. You aren't obligated agree with me. And yes I am being highly hyperbolic about this whole thing.
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Musings

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #71 on: September 24, 2008, 10:49:41 PM »

Trying arguing to someone who is from a country in a civil war that ethnicity and nationality does not matter.

That doesn't make any sense. In a COUNTRY in the midst of civil war everyone would still technically have the same nationality. For this reason they would probably be even more inclined to argue that nationality is irrelevant. And ethnicity would still be an imagined construct, only possible more rigidly enforced.

Nationality, to me, is based on citizenship and residence.  Ethnicity is based on heritage and lineage.

In a civil war, there are several issues at play -- economic/social/religious/ethnic and the idea of who belongs to a nation and who feels excluded.

Maybe those boundaries shouldn't be concrete; but to ignore them and call them irrelevant is a very very dangerous thing to do.

Outside of civil war, ethnicity and nationality are a part of personal narratives, perhaps for some a larger part than for others.  Again, to ignore that, is dangerous and ignorant. 

Ultimately, by saying there is no such thing as ethnicity and nationality and it is not real, you are imposing your own beliefs and the way you wish to "label" yourself on a very large group of people who do subscribe to those two things in one way or another, and do consider it important.  Thus, in an attempt to break down barriers, you are just being blind to important differences that could actually help do that.
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yosmark

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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #72 on: September 24, 2008, 10:51:36 PM »

No Nationallity bah, let there be no money  :-\
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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #73 on: September 24, 2008, 10:55:16 PM »

Maybe those boundaries shouldn't be concrete; but to ignore them and call them irrelevant is a very very dangerous thing to do.

You're missing the big point here, Musings. Someone may kill another person for being a different color, but since they share more genetics than their neighbor down the street, the difference is imaginary, so it's simply murder, not genocide. Just like acknowledging the difference in skin tone between myself and Morgan Freeman. The difference is imaginary. We're all the same color, the color of love.
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Re: Whats Yo Nationality/Ethnicity/Background?
« Reply #74 on: September 24, 2008, 10:58:39 PM »

Just because the stereotyping is subliminal doesn't necessarily mean it isn't there.

...and trying to eliminate any and all reference points to which someone might attach a stereotype does not accomplish the goal. Just because you refer to people without a mention of race, ethnic background, culture or history does not mean stereotyping isn't there.

In one post, you ask me to address the merit of your argument. In the next, you state that you are hyperbolizing. You can't expect someone to address your arguments articulately if you refuse to define them honestly.
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