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Kramer. The man, they myth the racisit?

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Postby eman » Thu Nov 23, 2006 12:41 am

Not so. People CONSTANTLY say things that don't accurately represent who they are. Nobody's perfect, so inherently people are gonna let slip things that don't truly represent who they are as a person. I promise you every single person at these forums have said things at some time or another that dont accurately represent them...and that's a fact.
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Postby deacon » Thu Nov 23, 2006 12:54 am

eman wrote:Not so. People CONSTANTLY say things that don't accurately represent who they are. Nobody's perfect, so inherently people are gonna let slip things that don't truly represent who they are as a person. I promise you every single person at these forums have said things at some time or another that dont accurately represent them...and that's a fact.


I disagree. The things people say do reflect who they are. People just try to filter the things they say because of the consequence, reaction, effect of what they say causes. Especially when you are upset or angry you say what you really feel and that filter between your brain and your mouth momentarily shuts off. You may be sorry about what you said afterwards but it still doesn't mean you didn't truly feel that way. It's like people that have personality changes when they get drunk. Alcohol makes them lose inhibitions and they say what they really feel or act like they really want to act but are able to resist those things when they are sober.

If Mr. Richards was in a room full of people that had the same ideology as him and started applauding and cheering him do you think there would have been an apology? If all those present would have supported him the action would have still been wrong.
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Postby knapplc » Thu Nov 23, 2006 8:49 am

Before we paint anyone into too tight of a corner, let's all remember that nobody is defending Richards' actions here. The debate is simply over his degree of wrongness.

It's easy to become polarized over an issue like this. I know nobody agrees that Richards' comments were OK. Let's all remember THAT during this discussion and things will stay cool.
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Postby sportsaddict » Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:21 am

Omaha Red Sox wrote:
sportsaddict wrote:Him and Jerry Seinfeld are going on Letterman tonight (and Dan Patrick is going to be on as well). This should be a very interesting show- I'll be watching for sure.


Were they on the show last night? I haven't heard anything. After that I would imagine it would be a good idea to not appear.

As far as the video...if he wasn't washed up already, he will be now... :-°


They appeared on Monday night. I'm not sure if the apology should have been made on Letterman- the audience laughed a few times during his apology and he was offended and upset- Seinfeld had to tell the crowd to stop laughing at one point. Richards is an idiot though. At one part, he says "I'm not a racist. That's whats so insane about this." I don't believe that for a second. You don't go into a tirade about black people like that if you aren't hateful towards them- he obviously has something against him.

Also, two of the victims of his rant were on CNN... they said that a large group of about 20 black people walked in and did not do anything particular to try and disturb Richards. They said naturally they were disturbing because they walked in late and that Richards had made other comments using the N word before his comments caught on tape.
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Postby Goatwhacker » Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:50 am

eman wrote:Not so. People CONSTANTLY say things that don't accurately represent who they are. Nobody's perfect, so inherently people are gonna let slip things that don't truly represent who they are as a person. I promise you every single person at these forums have said things at some time or another that dont accurately represent them...and that's a fact.


Agreed (and disagree with deacon). What deacon is saying is that people's true character comes out when they let their guard down. I think that is wrong. People's true character is shown by how they deal with their inevitable occasional dumb comments, generally by apologizing and making amends.

You are right all of us have said something without thinking that hurt someone else - but this is us at our worst, not the "true" us.

But does this apply to Michael Richards, probably not. His tirade went on too long to be considered a temporary bad decision. I'm not going to call him a racist since I really don't know but he did make some really dumb remarks.
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Postby A Fleshner Fantasy » Thu Nov 23, 2006 10:43 am

Goatwhacker wrote:
eman wrote:Not so. People CONSTANTLY say things that don't accurately represent who they are. Nobody's perfect, so inherently people are gonna let slip things that don't truly represent who they are as a person. I promise you every single person at these forums have said things at some time or another that dont accurately represent them...and that's a fact.


Agreed (and disagree with deacon). What deacon is saying is that people's true character comes out when they let their guard down. I think that is wrong. People's true character is shown by how they deal with their inevitable occasional dumb comments, generally by apologizing and making amends.

You are right all of us have said something without thinking that hurt someone else - but this is us at our worst, not the "true" us.

But does this apply to Michael Richards, probably not. His tirade went on too long to be considered a temporary bad decision. I'm not going to call him a racist since I really don't know but he did make some really dumb remarks.


I agree- I might give him the benefit of the doubt if it were one comment, but he went on and on, so I gotta say racist here.
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Postby Karoz » Thu Nov 23, 2006 11:21 am

deacon wrote:
Karoz wrote:
You make a very valid point, that the true self of an individual often comes out under pressure. Before I present a counter-argument, I would like to point out that I am not saying that he isn't a racist, I am saying that he is not necessarily a racist just because of the tirade.

Now, first:
deacon wrote:He wanted to insult a single individual and you think the best way to do that is to throw out a blanket insult to that individuals entire race??? WTF - You can't really believe that can you.


Let me rephrase my comment. Richards was very angered by the individual, so his intention was to make the individual feel just as angry. Since he did not know anything about the individual, he used an insult that is widely known, an insult that was guaranteed to anger the individual. Calling the individual the N word, and insulting his race, was sure to make the individual enraged.

deacon wrote:A person's character is embodied by their actions! If you are not gay then you are not going to have sex with another man under any circumstance. If you are not a thief you are not going to steal under any circumstance. If you are not a racist then you will not go on a racially charged diatribe under any circumstances.


Racism is very evident in our culture. Around the time that Richards was growing up, in the 50's and 60's, blacks were viewed much differently. I am sure that Richards was aware of this issue, and that he was very aware of how insulting the issue of race was to African-Americans.

So, again, that night, when he went on that tirade, his intentions weren't to put down the entire black race, but instead he intended to anger a single individual. Since he did not know anything about that individual, he sputtered out racist terms towards the individual, because he knew that this would anger him. Growing up when he did, he knew very well that blacks often get very angry when race is brought up as an issue, so he knew that this tactic would work. So, if he is guilty of anything, it is being highly insensitive, but not of being racist.

deacon wrote:We all revert to our basic sensibilities when we are under pressure. You can act like you are self-confident under normal conditions but as soon as enough pressure gets applied you will choke and wilt because you don't really believe in yourself. You can walk around and act like you are not a racist but as soon as enough pressure is applied those deep rooted idealogies will come out as a mechinism to deflect blame.


Again, I hate to repeat myself, but this is the core issue. When he was growing up, racism was still an ideology to a good portion of Americans. There is a good chance that he was around people who made these ideals their own, and who made their hate for blacks known. So, I'm sure the impression of racism is in the back of his mind, as it is in the mind of many today, but it doesn't mean that he supports those ideals.

He didn't go on a tirade because he hated blacks, he did it because he hated that individual, and he knew that the only sure way of angering that individual was to bring up the issue of race right in front of him.

I think you understand what I am getting at. Also, let me make it clear that I think it is distasteful that he used the issue of race to try and anger this individual. He should have either shrugged off the incident, or have found some other way to make the individual angry.



Well I am glad that you apparently know this man to the extent that you can say with confidence what his intent was and what his rational of thinking truly is.

Where I come from (read earth) if you want to insult an individual you focus on an aspect of that individual like their appearance, or their clothes or the way they talk or dress etc. Not rant about past deep seated atrocities laced with well known derogatory epitaphs.

So if someone that grew up in the 40's was angered by a Jewish stranger then it would be understandable for them to spew comments about the holocost and call them well known Jewish derogatory slurs?

What you are saying is due to the period one grows up in it can be rationalized if their behavior reflects accepted norms from the past whenever they get upset.
So you would understand for example if your grandfather started protesting against women's right to vote if his candidate didn't get elected because in the period of time that he grew up they didn't have that right, etc, etc.

I could go on and on but suffice it to say, you call it like you see it.

I see a closet racist that unwittingly fell out of that closet when confronted with a pressure situation.

I find it incredibly astonishing that you can actually formulate this line of thinking and defend it like he is being made a victim.

And I think you are insulting everyone over the age of 50 by saying that what happened when they grew up should excuse socially improper behavior today.


First, let me make it clear that I think that his comments were very distasteful, and that he should not have made them. The debate here is whether or not making those comments necessarily makes him a racist.

deacon wrote:Well I am glad that you apparently know this man to the extent that you can say with confidence what his intent was and what his rational of thinking truly is.


If I am guilty of it, then you are as well. You seem to be very sure of his mental state. You seem to "know" that he is a basket case, who deep down is a racist just waiting to explode. Look, we both have to assume a line of thinking in order to debate this issue. That's what the whole issue is about, whether he was acting and thinking in a racist manner, or whether he was insulting someone due to rage.

deacon wrote:Where I come from (read earth) if you want to insult an individual you focus on an aspect of that individual like their appearance, or their clothes or the way they talk or dress etc. Not rant about past deep seated atrocities laced with well known derogatory epitaphs.


As I explained in depth in my previous post, using the N word can be used to insult/enrage a single individual. When someone calls an African-American a n-----, do you think they are directing it towards every black person in the world, or just that individual? Sure, other blacks get offended by the comments, but common sense will tell you that the comment was directed at that individual, for enraging Richards.

deacon wrote:So if someone that grew up in the 40's was angered by a Jewish stranger then it would be understandable for them to spew comments about the holocost and call them well known Jewish derogatory slurs?


Please try to understand the context of my statements. As I stated, the relevance of when he grew up, was directly related to the idea of racism being embedded in the back of Richards' mind. The fact that he knew how hurtful those comments were to blacks, since he grew up at a time when this was very evident. So, when he went to insult an individual, and he saw that the individual was black, in the back of his mind he knew that there was one sure way to anger the individual.

Also, the environment that one grows up in is very important. An American growing up in the 40s wouldn't have grown up in an environment that was hostile to Jews. If I remember correctly, we fought for the Jews in WWII. Also, Jews are categorized more by religion than by race, so it might be harder for you to know if a stranger is Jewish or not.

deacon wrote:What you are saying is due to the period one grows up in it can be rationalized if their behavior reflects accepted norms from the past whenever they get upset.
So you would understand for example if your grandfather started protesting against women's right to vote if his candidate didn't get elected because in the period of time that he grew up they didn't have that right, etc, etc.


To organize a protest would take meticulous planning. Richards, on the other hand, made his comments during a moment of rage. It is not a valid comparison, because the grandfather would be looking to protest randomly, at no particular individual. He would not be retaliating towards someone, in a moment of rage, in a pure attempt to insult that particular individual. So, please, if you are going to use comparisons to make your point, then at least use valid comparisons.

deacon wrote:I find it incredibly astonishing that you can actually formulate this line of thinking and defend it like he is being made a victim.


I have never stated that he was a victim, that is just the impression that you apparently got from it. He is guilty of being insensitive, making comments that he should not have made. I merely explained the circumstances, and gave reasonable logic to suggest that making those statements does not necessarily make him a racist.

deacon wrote:And I think you are insulting everyone over the age of 50 by saying that what happened when they grew up should excuse socially improper behavior today.


Again, I never stated that it should be excused. In my opinion, Richards should not have made those statements, and he deserves any type of social backlash that he gets. The point I am expressing in my debate, is that making those comments does not necessarily make him a racist, given the circumstances.
Last edited by Karoz on Thu Nov 23, 2006 8:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Munboy » Thu Nov 23, 2006 11:43 am

yada yada yada...
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Postby Plindsey88 » Fri Nov 24, 2006 9:26 am

I, for one, know that I have been guilty of becoming so extremely enraged at someone that I have said anything I could think of to hurt them...

One has to realize that these were strangers to Richards... The only thing he knew about any of them was the fact that they were black... I could totally see how he could become so enraged that he said the only thing he could think of to get under their skin, even if he didn't truly hold those ideals...

And, just to play devil's advocate here, I wonder how this story would have played out differently if we were talking about Chris Rock launching off into a tirade against a white heckler at the Apollo Theater... Just a thought...
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Postby Metroid » Fri Nov 24, 2006 12:01 pm

Munboy wrote:yada yada yada...


Get outa here newb. :-B
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