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Mixed race girl in Poland, good idea?


Trevek 26 | 1,702
7 Mar 2010 #31
Jesus people!

How's this for a scenario.

The girl hears some stories that Poles are racist in their own country and they disrespect Blacks.

Which would you prefer...

a) She just believes them and lives life thinking it's true. Doesn't visit Poland and learns nothing.

b) She asks, tries to learn and broaden her mind and decides to come to Poland to find out. Learns that Poles do not cut the horns off their heads when they cross the border... because they don't have any.
beelzebub - | 444
7 Mar 2010 #32
enkidu I don't agree. I think it is more pervasive than you think and just don't like the fact. Do you think the people from a racist town in Alabama will admit it? of course not...nor would anyone else from there want to acknowledge it.
1jola 14 | 1,879
7 Mar 2010 #33
Yes, neither any of you nor I are racist, but we are not looking in black or arab neighbourhoods to buy houses in. Wonder why?
PolishNutjob 1 | 74
7 Mar 2010 #34
I am a mixed race girl from England ...

Exactly which races are you claiming to have mixed?
Trevek 26 | 1,702
7 Mar 2010 #35
In Warsaw - This is simple statement: "This brown-skinned guy is ba###rd". Brown or black are just a colours in Polish language - with no other contexts.
In Poland you can describe people by the color of their skin the same way you can do it by the colour of hair. Calling somebody a red-head is certainly not racist, is it?

This is exactly the point I was trying to make earlier. What passes for racism in UK is not necessarily racism here because the concepts and 'knowledge' (ie, that n*gger is an offensive word) is not as widely known.

But most of this so-called famous Polish racism is just a misunderstanding on the border of cultures and languages

True, but there is still a swastika carved on the door of my local Chinese restaurant.
enkidu 7 | 623
7 Mar 2010 #36
Do you think the people from a racist town in Alabama will admit it? of course not...nor would anyone else from there want to acknowledge it.

So - try to imagine a guy from Alabama who never in his life has seen any black person. The same with his father and father of his father and so on. Of course - our Guy knows that there are other races in the world, but he has no personal knowledge on this subiect. Nor stereotypes, nor prejudiction.

Now - how racist he could be if he suddenly decide to be an racist?
Seanus 15 | 19,706
7 Mar 2010 #37
When are you gonna submit your PhD paper on the Polish conception of racism, enkidu? ;) ;) 'When racism isn't racism' would be a good title ;) ;) Simply put, some are racist and some aren't.
beelzebub - | 444
7 Mar 2010 #38
So - try to imagine a guy from Alabama who never in his life has seen any black person. The same with his father and father of his father and so on. Of course - our Guy knows that there are other races in the world, but he has no personal knowledge on this subiect. Nor stereotypes, nor prejudiction.
Now - how racist he could be if he suddenly decide to be an racist?

You cannot dismiss it this way. Poles have seen blacks first of all. Second of all you don't have to have them locally to be racist against them. You can't be serious that the pure innocent Poles in their snowy white world can't be racists because they know nothing of life outside their sphere.
Matowy - | 295
7 Mar 2010 #39
I don't deny that there are some REAL racists in Poland. But most of this so-called famous Polish racism is just a misunderstanding on the border of cultures and languages.

I don't agree. I've heard incredibly liberal, cultured, sometimes gay Poles from Warsaw casually drop extremely racist terminology in their speech with such stunning ease, and I don't mean words like "black" or "brown". These are people I would categorize as "open-minded". "Brown" is not a racial or ethnic designation anywhere, so it's not really racist to refer to someone in that way; it's mostly just rude. "Black" however, is a racial designation, so nobody bats an eyelid if someone is referred to as "black".
enkidu 7 | 623
7 Mar 2010 #40
True, but there is still a swastika carved on the door of my local Chinese restaurant.

Swastika is an old symbol that is well-known in China. :)
OP JemmaR34 1 | 3
7 Mar 2010 #41
Exactly which races are you claiming to have mixed?

Parents - Mum; White British & Dad; Black Jamaican

I also have cousins, aunties,uncles, great nans/grandads from America, Italy, Canada, Australia and Spain.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
7 Mar 2010 #42
I have seen Poles react unfavourably to flamboyant coloured folk. I knew a Mexican guy here and he got a bit of rap but not much really. If you are discreet and not overbearing then you should be fine.
enkidu 7 | 623
7 Mar 2010 #43
casually drop extremely racist terminology in their speech with such stunning ease

According to Western standards. You judge them by standards of other culture. This is racists.

Seriously though - I don't pretend that we are innocent island of tolerance in the racist world. I simply state that even developing racism takes time. We never got that time.

Maybe in 20 years we become a racist nation - who knows?
Trevek 26 | 1,702
7 Mar 2010 #44
Swastika is an old symbol that is well-known in China. :)

I'd forgotten that. I think 'Polska dla Polaków' is served with rice and sweet and sour sauce too. ;-)

You cannot dismiss it this way. Poles have seen blacks first of all. Second of all you don't have to have them locally to be racist against them. You can't be serious that the pure innocent Poles in their snowy white world can't be racists because they know nothing of life outside their sphere.

Good point. I know people who have never (knowingly) met Jews, but are still fiercely antisemitic.
enkidu 7 | 623
7 Mar 2010 #45
I'd forgotten that. I think 'Polska dla Polaków' is served with rice and sweet and sour sauce too. ;-)

Being an "Polak" is matter of culture and tradition, not blood or race. Everyone can ba "Polak". I am Polish-Ukrainian-German mixture. I am 100% Polish.
Trevek 26 | 1,702
7 Mar 2010 #46
The sign is in Korea, but I can post one of my own photos from China where the swastica is proudly displayed a buddha statue.

But the sign here also has a large picture of Hitler next to it.

Being an "Polak" is matter of culture and tradition, not blood or race. Everyone can ba "Polak". I am Polish-Ukrainian-German mixture. I am 100% Polish.

Sorry, I was referring to the grafitti accompanying the swastika. Quite ironic, really.
Matowy - | 295
7 Mar 2010 #47
According to Western standards. You judge them by standards of other culture. This is racists.

I stressed "liberal, cultured, from Warsaw" for a reason, and they are mostly more knowledgeable about the world than I am. They DO know what they're saying, and aware that their casual terminology carries with it incredibly hateful connotation, they just don't seem to care. I don't often discuss topics of racism with the average Pole, so I don't know about general attitudes. I simply note that some of the most intelligent, liberal and worldly people I've ever known that are from Poland have no issues with being racist.

Seriously though - I don't pretend that we are innocent island of tolerance in the racist world. I simply state that even developing racism takes time. We never got that time.
Maybe in 20 years we become a racist nation - who knows?

Racism is not an acquired viewpoint, it is quite primitive and natural, hence why it is so common. Poland may not have racial stereotypes yet, but it's perfectly possible for someone to hold prejudices based on race.
enkidu 7 | 623
7 Mar 2010 #48
Good point. I know people who have never (knowingly) met Jews, but are still fiercely antisemitic.

Come on - there was a huuuge Jewish population in Poland. Some stories been told, some lessons learned. Anti-semitism is quite different thing than racism (at least in Poland)
Trevek 26 | 1,702
7 Mar 2010 #49
I wasn't actually thinking of Poland in this case, but UK... still, what you say is right and reinforces what i said earlier about the OP having heard stories.
enkidu 7 | 623
7 Mar 2010 #50
I've ever known that are from Poland have no issues with being racist.

Once more - they are racists in your eyes, and by your standards. They don't seems to have any problems with "racists" remarks simply because they are not racists in their own eyes.

Just for one second try to understand that your point of view is not the only one that exist.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
7 Mar 2010 #51
Matowy is making a clear point, enkidu. A racist remark is clearly one meant to single out a particular race and ridicule. Czarnuchu, for example.

You are trying to defend the indefensible. Some here are racist as he said. That's just a fact!
beelzebub - | 444
7 Mar 2010 #52
If you ever travel again out of the US, you will notice that in foreign countries there are signs in English, like this one in South Korea. As to observational skills, notice the writing above the saluting Hitler. Astounded again?

The point was...someone mentioned the Swastika was an old Chinese symbol....but in this case since the sign is clearly playing on Hitler and the Nazis it is not simply a Chinese symbol. When I pointed that out you focused on the Korean writing and seemingly were unaware of the fact there was anything else there. Did I misunderstand you?

The OP was asking about Poland, lets not go into anything about China,Korea or Nazis.
Matowy - | 295
7 Mar 2010 #53
Once more - they are racists in your eyes, and by your standards. They don't seems to have any problems with "racists" remarks simply because they are not racists in their own eyes.
Just for one second try to understand that your point of view is not the only one that exist.

There is no point of view to be had on it. I haven't even told you what terminology they use. It is not ambiguous terms like "black" or "coloured", it is VERY extreme terminology that implies hate and disgust. Someone who refers to gay people as "faggots" is referring to them with a derogatory name that implies hate, no matter if you're from Poland or San Francisco.
Trevek 26 | 1,702
7 Mar 2010 #54
someone mentioned the Swastika was an old Chinese symbol

to be fair, I think that was a joke on ekidu's part. I don't think it was meant to be taken seriously.

Race mixing, very sad. Neither black nor white. A man without a homeland.

Yeah, like all those Normans and Gaels. A bit beyond the pale, really.
enkidu 7 | 623
7 Mar 2010 #55
Matowy is making a clear point, enkidu. A racist remark is clearly one meant to single out a particular race and ridicule. Czarnuchu, for example.

Ok - let's talk about Czarnuchu.
What's so derogatory in this word? Is there any cultural (presumably negative) context? Can this word be used as an insult? Nah, nah, and nah again.

You see this word as racist simply because you automatically translate it into English. And translation is an N-word. But N-word is quite different story. N-word has a certain cultural context and meaning wchich is lack in Czarnuchy.

Btw - single out and ridicule is not racism according to The Great Polish Code of Conduct. :-)
Its good fun.
1jola 14 | 1,879
7 Mar 2010 #56
Great, white, non-Poles voicing opinions on Polish racism. Some with an obvious grudge, dished out daily, towards anything Polish.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
7 Mar 2010 #57
If you say Czarnuch to a metalhead (a white guy), he might not mind.

However, say it to a black guy at a football match and it most definitely is racist. I heard several guys in a rage beside me call a player 'Ty Czarnuchu' with many expletives.

The whole insinuation is racist, enkidu. Blacks call themselves 'nig*a' and it's ok. Whites could call one another cracker. But to say Czarnuchu to a black guy is not nice at all, it singles out his colour.

Beelzebub is having his points proven here. The level of defensiveness is staggering. Look, I can see racism a mile off and know the intentions behind it. Quit the defensive stance and acknowledge that it exists.
beelzebub - | 444
7 Mar 2010 #58
Great, white, non-Poles voicing opinions on Polish racism. Some with an obvious grudge, dished out daily, towards anything Polish

A white non pole who lived in Poland for over a decade and understands things there in my case. You do not get to dismiss my comments as a "grudge". They are observations which you do not like. That doesn't make them wrong nor will I allow you to belittle them trying to paint me as someone who has a mission to give Poland a bad name. That is a tactic employed here all too often by people when they don't like what you are saying.
Matowy - | 295
7 Mar 2010 #59
If there are black people living in Poland, then yes, it can be used to insult.

Btw - single out and ridicule is not racism according to The Great Polish Code of Conduct. :-)
Its good fun

Let's not be naive here. Racial slurs are just words, and they carry no venom in them on their own. Those words are used, however, to denote a dislike, disdain, or disapproval towards a certain group. There is no line in the sand here, that is simply how they are used. Use these words enough times, even if they carry no ill-will and are just for "fun" then you give the impression to yourself and others that it's OK to dislike a certain group, because the way in which you refer to them is derogatory. Derogatory language is what we use when we want to dehumanize any sort of group, especially in war time as it is then easier to kill them without immediate remorse.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
7 Mar 2010 #60
Precisely, Matowy. There is no need to single out a group like that. I wish the OP good luck, she should be fine.

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