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Fine and Dandy

By ATWadmin On November 15th, 2006

‘Horses?  We can’t afford to lose no horses, you dummy.  Send over a couple o’ niggers.’  It has to be one of the funniest lines in Blazing Saddles; the scene when Slim Pickens tells a loyal Burton Gilliam that the railroad into Rock Ridge has run into some quick sand, and a small team is required to investigate.  The film, as I recall, has a large cast of black actors (including the fantastic and sadly-missed Cleavon Little) who don’t object to starring in a movie with such a frequent use of the word.  Then again, some blacks don’t have this perennial chip on their shoulder.  Alas, many others do, and they are constantly indulged by a supine MSM who substitute ‘nigger’ for the ‘n-word’.  Have you ever heard of anything so bloody stupid?

I’m a honky.  They’re niggers.  That’s all there is to it.  I don’t have a problem with blacks using the term to describe whites – even in a derogatory sense.  So why should some have an issue with our use of description?  Moreover, why should people get vexed about a harmless comic published in the days when there were few blacks in this country, let alone those with over-sensitive dispositions about their skin colour?

The Glasgow Anti-Racist Alliance (a euphemism for a coalescence of bleeding-heart Lefties and ‘uppity niggers’ – another quote from Blazing Saddles) is calling for a re-print of the 1939 edition of Dandy to be removed from bookshops because it contains several references to the ‘n-word’, sorry, ‘nigger’ , in its cartoons.  A number of Shakespeare’s plays also use negative language to describe Jews and blacks.  Are we going to airbrush him from the arena of PC purism, also?  My only advice to these idiots is to get a life

43 Responses to “Fine and Dandy”

  1. >>I’m a honky. They’re niggers. That’s all there is to it. I don’t have a problem with blacks using the term to describe whites – even in a derogatory sense. So why should some have an issue with our use of description?<<

    I think the difference has a lot to do with the fact that blacks were enslaved by whites for centuries and denied basic civil rights for even longer. Those most prone to using the term ""nigger" were usually those most likely to support slavery and to demean and even lynch blacks from time to time.

    "Honky" just can’t compete with that.

  2. And there has been a white slave trade in various parts of the world. No ethnic group has a monopoly on domination. This Orwellian ‘black guys good’ nonsense is laughable and I would have expected better from you, Cunningham.

  3. I’m in two minds about this, if the reprint is aimed at adult collecters who will understand the context of how the word was used in that period then they should just go ahead. If it is going to be largely read by a new generation of kids who don’t understand that then I would rather that they didn’t use the word.

  4. Using this logic, I suppose I will be able to call the next pesky liberal I meet a pesky Judensoedling.

  5. sorry,
    pesky liberal is naturally a Judensoeldling in Andrewwelt.

  6. Now where’s that Kike loving blogger Felix Quigley???

    j/k 😉

  7. I’ve also never understood how a single two-syllable word can be so agonisingly offensive as to cause distress or inner pain to anyone. So the term "nigger" ain’t exactly nice. Who cares? If black people honestly drop to their knees in tears upon utterance of the word then perhaps they should get thicker skin.

  8. Of course the great irony is that the most cursory listen to rap music (if you must) reveals it to be peppered with the word ‘nigga’, along with ho’s, bitches and homies.
    If it’s good enough for the kings of gangsta rap, why not the rest of us?

    Political correctness has reached McCarthy-esque levels, and is at the point where people are terrified of offending people who don’t actually feel offended at all, so the govt have decided to feel offended on their behalf.

  9. What I hate is the double standard. A black rapper says it and makes a million, but if I were to say it at work, i lose my job.

  10. There’s no double standard there, Charles.
    (and there’s no irony there, HA)

  11. Surely the use of the n word in Blazing Saddles is to ridicule those who use the word,

    In the same way that The Producers ridicules the NAZIs

  12. Aileen

    I always thought so. Maybe it was too subtle.

    Andrew

    I’d give Borat a miss if I was you. Way too confusing.

  13. Henry

    Seen it. Thought it was hilarious.

  14. >> Surely the use of the n word in Blazing Saddles is to ridicule those who use the word<<

    That’s true. In BS, those guys are shown for what they are by their use of the N-word and other things (when they all start farting together). We are looking at them from the outside and don’t identify with them. In the Dandy, on the other hand, the word is being used directly and at the first level, not at the "meta-level" as in BS (without wishing to put too fine a point on the Dandy or BS).

    The mistake of those making the Rapper-comparison is so obvious I’m surprised it needs stating.
    An insult, as everyone knows, exists only in the relationship between two people or groups thereof. A term referring to a person or a group can be used innocuously when those people are speaking about themselves, but becomes an insult if used by an outsider.
    This is especially true if there is a social or historical tension between the outsider and the one designated by the term, as is very much the case between blacks and whites.
    e.g. Let’s say street cleaners refer to themselves, when speaking jokingly or with bitter irony among themselves, as "shit shifters". This is fine, until, say, a young teacher in a school on that street comes out and says "Could you shit shifters please work a bit quieter. The children are doing their homework"!

  15. So it should be ok to refer to Jack Straw as a Jew-boy? Or is that a case where pc does apply?

  16. Anymore anti-Semitism in this thread and you’re all banned!!! Last warning!

  17. Anti-semitism is racism. Consistent approaches would be either to ban all racist comments, or to ban none. If you ban anti-Semitic comments, then you should also consider banning your contributors who seem to delight in their references to ‘fuzzies’ and ‘niggers’. If you don’t do that, then you’re holding one identified racial group as more important than others, which seems to me the essence of racism.

    Of course, it’s your site.

  18. Hugh,

    That was some clown impersonating me! They will be banned. I am not as draconian as you may think!!

  19. Fair enough, DV.

    Some sad cases out there.

  20. Hugh

    I agree 100% with your post at 10.12 AM. It’s all or nothing.

  21. Peter,

    The post to which Hugh responds in his 10.12 was not by me. Therefore this site is being consistent in how it deals with such issues.

  22. David

    I was not referring to the false comment, but to the general import of Andrew’s post.

  23. It is a vividly offensive word that any adult should recognize as such. One of the dangers in satire is that not everyone gets it. While Blazing Saddles brillantly stood racism on its head, there is a significant portion of the viewing public that shared the sentiments of the racist townspeople.

    I don’t know if the n-word is as loaded a term in England as it is here in the U.S. Some black performers use it in comic acts and in rap acts. There is a certain element of freedom in self-applying a derogatory term (see Shane McGowan’s use of Paddy) that is not present when it is used by a person outside of the group. Frankly, I find its use among rappers as too prevalent, a view shared by many of the adult organizations in the black community and in any event certainly not an excuse for whites.

    The term Honky is almost comical in its application. I’ve never known a single instance of a serious white person who was actually offended. In the context of U.S. history, it is hardly the equivalent of the use of the n word.

    Ethnic portrayals in the 1930s are clearly different than today. I am not about to condemn Al Jolsen or the Little Rascals for certain scenes that would be considered outrageous today. But since we have the benefit of history, and the benefit of progress, we certainly do not have to revert to the prejudice of old in our present day dealings.

  24. Mahons

    Some good points. I will respond by saying that your standpoint would have more credence if black rap artists and the like use the word with wanton abandon, but recoil in horror when people of different ethnic backgrounds do so. It’s hypocrisy writ-large.

  25. Sorry, that should say ‘didn’t use.’

  26. Andrew: We can’t let black rap stars dictate the standard for decorum or we’ll all be wearing bling, sporting AK-47s and chugging 40 ounce malt liquor. One of the real problems in the black community in this country is the embrace of ghetto standards by many of black entertainers -in dress, language, behavior and speech.
    I don’t just think it is because I am older that I think they’ve gone from the top of the talent pile(Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, James Brown, Count Bassie., Louis Armstrong, The Supremes, The Temptations, Smokey Robinson) to the bottom (P Diddy, 50 Cent etc) in such a short time. That is also in great part not merely because of their embrace of the ghetto culture, but the embrace by white kids of this as well. Is there anything more disconcerting than watching a white guy rap along to NWA or Public Enemy?
    You want a funny example in this regard? Get your hands on a copy of the movie Office Space and you’ll see what I mean (give it to yourself as a belated birthday present).

  27. Mahons,
    Public Enemy would be very against the use of the n word:

    "Break it down
    N.I.G.G.E.R.
    Niga
    Everybody sayin’ it
    Everybody playin’ it rolling on the scales
    ‘Cause everybody’s weighin’ it
    Toby say yo I be good niga
    Let me get a shovel make a good digger
    I don’t care how small or bigger
    I don’t want to be called yo niga
    Yo niga…"

    or:

    Black history – white lie
    Black athletes – white agents
    Black preacher – white Jesus
    Black drug dealer – white government
    Black entertainers – white lawyers
    Black monday – white Chistmas
    Black success story – white wife
    Black police – white judge
    Black business – white accoutants
    Black record co – white distribution
    Black comedians – white media
    Black politicians – white president
    Black genocide – white world order

    So whatcha sayin

    White mans heaven is black mans hell

  28. Garfield: I get their point, not yours.

  29. Totally agree with all you are saying Mahons. The word is offensive and derogatory. The sooner it is edited out of rap and as a greeting between young black men the better. It shows their lack of respect for each other. Maybe, just maybe, if they had more respect for themselves crime rates could fall and educational standards improve.

  30. I saw the movie in 1977 in college. It was a court-yard showing for the dorm. Whites sat in one group and blacks in another. In that scene where Slim Pickens sent a couple of blacks up to the quicksand b/c "horses are too expensive" we laughed like hell. When Clevon Little climbed outa the quicksand and flattened Pickens with a shovel, the blacks cheered and laughed. It was all great fun. Everybody was in on the joke.

    Something has been lost in the criminalization of a word.

  31. This whole thing is so blown out of proportion. Some people act like they were somehow victims of slavery, while never having actually been slaves. Probably most of us "crackers" have slave ancestors. Look up Serf in the dictionary, for instance. African tribes practiced slavery amongst themselves. And as for "denied civil rights for even longer" there are probably a hundred countries around the world where that happens to blacks, white and probably purples on a daily basis.

    The slave trade continues today, with slaves of all colours. That is where our attention should be.

  32. Charles: It isn’t its use in Blazing Saddles that we are debating, it is its proposed use as the descriptive term for people of the black race. If one of your group had shouted it across at the other, it wouldn’t have been a joke in 1977 and it wouldn’t be a joke today.
    Incidently, where did you go?

  33. Mark: Our attention should be able to comprehend many issues.

  34. Mahons,
    my point is that Public Enemy don’t embrace ghetto culture, they despise it. Chuck D is one of the most eloquent opponents of the way women are treated in black society, the bling bling everything.

  35. And Flavor Flav (why do I know this?) is an example of black dignity?

    Anyhow, I mentioned PE (or checked them as we say in da hood) in the context of White Guys rapping to their lyrics and not in the same context as the 50 Cents of the world.

  36. Mahons, This was at the now defunct East Texas State. I graduated from the University of Texas at Austin.

    I’m not advocating the use of the word. I’m just not for criminalizing it to the extent that schools are removing Twain from their library shelves. One teacher in Tx almost lost her job for using the word "niggardly" in a high school lit class!

  37. Charles: The Twain issue makes one despair for common sense. I agree with you on that. But Andrew’s take was not really in defense of literature, he was advancing the notion that the use of the word should be acceptable (I think), or if not acceptable, then at least it shouldn’t be condemned. I disagree. It is an unacceptable term that should be avoided by people of decency.

  38. Wording used in historical publications should not be censored or airbrushed for modern sensibilities, they are part of a historical record and should be treated accurately as such. – but we should continue to be proud of acknowledging and rejecting such terminology in our own times.

  39. Mahons, yes, but spending our time on worrying about a what a bunch of dead intolerants* wrote, or saying that some of us deserve special favors because of what happened to our dead ancestors, are not things we should devote our attention to.

    What gone is gone. We have contemporary issues.

    *= I haven’t seen the edition of the dandy referred to, and I don’t mean to cast Twain as intolerant as I haven’t read him in a long time, but you get the point.

  40. Mark: Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it. And what could be more contemporary than saying that an offensive racial term shouldn’t be used in common conversation?

    Twain used it for the most noble character in his book, the slave Jim. It added realism to the text. He didn’t use it as a sample of intolerance which is why the book bannings for his use of the word in that text are so ridiculous.

  41. >>>my point is that Public Enemy don’t embrace ghetto culture, they despise it. Chuck D is one of the most eloquent opponents of the way women are treated in black society, the bling bling everything.<<<

    as did most of the old scool.

    Afrika Bambaataa, Grandmaster, DMC, Quest, De la, Digital Underground, Eric B & Rakim. it was those west coast dicks that dragged the genre into the gutter.

  42. Mahons

    I think that I have the same instintive reaction to the word as you have. However, I would like to see it disarmed of its power. That move cannot be spearheaded by us honkies!

    That niggard;y thing makes me fune. Penalising others for our ignorance is not the way to go.

    That said, I will probably need a course of therapy to be able to use it myself.

  43. Andrew

    I know what you’re driving at. I just think you could put it better!