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Tags language , racial slurs , racism issues , semantics , Stephen Hagan

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Old 23rd July 2020, 10:56 PM   #1
arthwollipot
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Do you like your cheese?

Coon cheese's name to be changed over racism concerns

Quote:
Coon cheese's name will be changed after a campaign by activists who said it had racist connotations.

Coon's owners, dairy products company Saputo, confirmed the change today after being written a letter of complaint in June by activist Stephen Hagan, who has been fighting for 20 years to have the name changed.

"I said that the cheese brand was offensive, I said that it demeans people of colour," Dr Hagan told the ABC on Friday.

"I said that it was unacceptable as a brand in 2020."

Following a review, Saputo agreed.

"One of our basic principles as an organisation is to treat people with respect and without discrimination and we will not condone behaviour that goes against this," the Canadian company said in a statement.

"We wanted to ensure we listened to all the concerns surrounding the COON brand name, while also considering comments from consumers who cherish the brand and recognise the origin of its founder Edward William Coon, which they feel connected to.

"After thorough consideration, Saputo has decided to retire the COON brand name."
Do you agree?
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Old 23rd July 2020, 11:03 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
Personally no. As it is stupid.

But it is a private company, so if they chose to be stupid and change it, who am I to argue?
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Old 23rd July 2020, 11:07 PM   #3
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With this logic Carrie Coon is gonna have issues soon, I guess.
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Old 23rd July 2020, 11:08 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Busta Capp View Post
With this logic Carrie Coon is gonna have issues soon, I guess.
As, no doubt, the many, many white people called Black.....
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Old 23rd July 2020, 11:16 PM   #5
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Just having a quick Google it apparently is the anglosised version of the Scottish name MacCoon which they changed to when they left.

Which doubles up on how stupid it is.
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Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 23rd July 2020, 11:17 PM   #6
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Tbf MacCoon actually sounds worse
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Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 23rd July 2020, 11:25 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Personally no. As it is stupid.

But it is a private company, so if they chose to be stupid and change it, who am I to argue?
Why is it stupid? The link says the name was originally a racist joke. Even it wasn't, the current owners are mutiple steps removed from the founders. They're selling a commercial product in a competitive marketplace. Why should they want people mad at them? You think it's stupid to get rid of Aunt Jemima, the Redskins, and other antiquated trade names?

It's an Australian company. There must be some Australian names that would be suitable.
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Old 23rd July 2020, 11:29 PM   #8
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It comes from an anglosised version of a Scottish surname, so yes it is stupid.

But it is the companies choice, so mmh

Have no idea what Jemima is. Red skins is probably a bit dodge though.

But if they tried to change the All Blacks I wouldn't want to be in the country
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Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 23rd July 2020, 11:46 PM   #9
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The rebranding follows similar decisions about Red Skins and Chicos.
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:01 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
The rebranding follows similar decisions about Red Skins and Chicos.
I knew about the redskins from the team that was probably right to change.

I'd never heard of chicos or the connotations.

I have a feeling the Kentucky area were quite reliant on slave labour and in the US there is connotations around fried chicken apparently

Anyone up for a group forcing KFC to change?

I'll do up a petition.
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:17 AM   #11
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"Getting offended by the name of a cheese brand is ridiculous says guy offended by the new name of a cheese brand."

- Just seen elsewhere.
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:21 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Orphia Nay View Post
"Getting offended by the name of a cheese brand is ridiculous says guy offended by the new name of a cheese brand."

- Just seen elsewhere.
Bit random.

Do you mind clarifying
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Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:29 AM   #13
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WTF?
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:33 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
It comes from an anglosised version of a Scottish surname, so yes it is stupid.

But it is the companies choice, so mmh

Have no idea what Jemima is. Red skins is probably a bit dodge though.

But if they tried to change the All Blacks I wouldn't want to be in the country
"When I realised I had no real grounds for getting offended by the change I wanted to be offended by, I made up something extreme and stupid that nobody was seriously proposing and got offended about that."
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:36 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by PursuedByABear View Post
"When I realised I had no real grounds for getting offended by the change I wanted to be offended by, I made up something extreme and stupid that nobody was seriously proposing and got offended about that."
When did people just start posting made up quotes here?

And where am I offended?
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Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:40 AM   #16
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The activist pushing for the change said he would back off if they could prove that the cheese was genuinely named for the inventor of the process, rather than the black wax in which it was allegedly originally wrapped.

It has easily been shown conclusively that Edward W Coon was the person who invented and patented the original process and that the alternate story - the black wax coating and that Coon was an uneducated Russian emigrant and factory hand - has been shown to have no basis.

But they still went and retired the brand - even though it is not clear that more than a handful of people were pushing for them to do that.

However, as someone said earlier, they are a private company and can do what they want with their brands. Maybe they feel that even the possibility that this can be taken as a racial slur is enough.
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:42 AM   #17
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The brand is named after its founder, Edward Coon, a man who's name has Scottish connections that in no way is a slur on POC. It is probably derived from McCune, McCowan or McCone.

If we now get to pick a name and insert racist connotations upon it then I'm sorry that I don't have more influence as I'm pretty sure that, on a slow day (like today), I could get worked up enough to make the case that Dr Stephen Hagan is at it.... and he's a minority too!

Within his name he has hidden...

Aseng - Which is a slur on non-Indonesian citizens (particularly Chinese).
Ape - I'll let you work out that one.
Ese - Offensively used by races other than Hispanics
Ganesh - That's a Hindu God's name the bastard has appropriated!
Gans - used by Germans to describe Latvians
Hapa - Means half-white.
NAGA - North American Ground Ape; Affectionately used by the LAPD during the Watts riot in Los Angeles.
NAHA - North American Hairless Apes.
NAPA - North American Pavement Apes.
NASA - North American Street .......... you get the picture here I hope.
Nate - Shortened derogatory name for Native Americans.
Ng - A very common Asian surname that is considered goofy and is used derogatorily.
SAN - Stupid Assed ******
TAP - Typical American Prick

I think a petition is order!
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:43 AM   #18
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From a business point of view I expect there is nothing to agree or disagree with except the bottom line. Plenty of companies who think the name of their product will be negatively affected financially, change the name of the product such as Toyota's MR2, which it had to change for the French market to avoid being called the Toyota ****.

If you are asking should the company change the name because it causes offence regardless of intent and regardless of the financial costs, then I think, no, just as I don't think any company selling "faggots" should have to change the name of its product to "offal balls" or something like that.

That is, providing the company strictly maintained a separation between its brand name/product and the dual meaning. If it were to play up to the secondary meaning then I think the company could expect some censure such as in this case:

Quote:
The use of the word "faggot" has caused controversy due to its additional meaning as a pejorative term for a homosexual man in American English. In 2004, a radio commercial for the UK supermarket chain Somerfield, in which a man rejects his wife's suggested dinner saying "I've got nothing against faggots, I just don't fancy them" was found to have breached the Advertising and Sponsorship Code and was banned by the industry regulator Ofcom.
Link
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:44 AM   #19
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You don't get a lot of people referring to cigarettes as "fags" any more, either.

I for one am interested in what alternative name the cheese company comes up with.
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:47 AM   #20
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The name Coon is a
Quote:
...racial slur, used pejoratively to refer to a dark-skinned person of African, Australian Aboriginal, or Pacific island heritage,...
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coon#R...y_biased_usage

Someone mentioned the red skins above. The rebranding is equally justified in both cases.
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:51 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by rjh01 View Post
The name Coon is a

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coon#R...y_biased_usage

Someone mentioned the red skins above. The rebranding is equally justified in both cases.
Thanks for pointing out the obvious.

It is also a surname
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:54 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
You don't get a lot of people referring to cigarettes as "fags" any more, either.
You do in the UK. But then you don't get anyone using it as a term of abuse for gay men. Not in my experience anyway. Not that there are no bigots, they just have a range of different insults to use.
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:57 AM   #23
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True that. I have only heard fag used derogatory on US TV. Same with the coon thing.
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Old 24th July 2020, 12:59 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
When did people just start posting made up quotes here?

And where am I offended?
It is not a "made-up quote", it is clearly a precis of your argument, such as it is. There's no suggestion you used those words, is there which is why it is not attributed, or presented in quote format.

You are clearly offended. The same way the people who bemoan the lack of golliwogs on jamjars were offended. The "Whatever next!" formulation followed by some extreme bollocks nobody has contemplated is a clear marker.
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Old 24th July 2020, 01:03 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Orphia Nay View Post
"Getting offended by the name of a cheese brand is ridiculous says guy offended by the new name of a cheese brand."

- Just seen elsewhere.
Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Bit random.

Do you mind clarifying
I saw it in a discussion about this name-change in another place online.


Originally Posted by Robin View Post
But they still went and retired the brand - even though it is not clear that more than a handful of people were pushing for them to do that.

Anyone else here think "Coon is a racist name" is like general vernacular in Australia?

Mr Nay is from the UK and he immediately recoiled when he first saw it in the supermarket.

I've known since I was a kid that the name is just wrong, like Golliwogs and the N word. Everybody seems to know.
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Old 24th July 2020, 01:07 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by PursuedByABear View Post
It is not a "made-up quote", it is clearly a precis of your argument, such as it is. There's no suggestion you used those words, is there which is why it is not attributed, or presented in quote format.

You are clearly offended. The same way the people who bemoan the lack of golliwogs on jamjars were offended. The "Whatever next!" formulation followed by some extreme bollocks nobody has contemplated is a clear marker.
With all due respect (which frankly is shrinking in volume), quote marks aimed at me portray quotes from me. Which I haven't said.

How is this?

PursuedByABear - "I hate disabled people"

Please stop it,

I am not offended by anything. I just find this one stupid as it is a last name.

I even said in my first post

"But it is a private company, so if they chose to be stupid and change it, who am I to argue?"

Maybe you could have chosen that quote and not made things up

I literally couldn't give a ****. I don't live in Aus. But my personal opinion (which I still think I am allowed) is it is stupid
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Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000

Last edited by cullennz; 24th July 2020 at 01:11 AM.
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Old 24th July 2020, 01:09 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by PursuedByABear View Post
It is not a "made-up quote", it is clearly a precis of your argument, such as it is. There's no suggestion you used those words, is there which is why it is not attributed, or presented in quote format.

You are clearly offended. The same way the people who bemoan the lack of golliwogs on jamjars were offended. The "Whatever next!" formulation followed by some extreme bollocks nobody has contemplated is a clear marker.
That's a hell of a load of projection right there. Feeling unconsciously guilty?
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Old 24th July 2020, 01:16 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
True that. I have only heard fag used derogatory on US TV. Same with the coon thing.
‘coon’ was very much in use in the UK in the 70s; one of Alf Garnett’s favourite words.
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I AGREE


Warning; very racist attitudes. Also, this was broadcast at prime time on mainstream TV in the UK (but not quite in the same league as the Black and White Minstrel Show, which was still going in the late ‘70s).
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Old 24th July 2020, 01:17 AM   #29
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This is purely from memory, but we have lollies/sweets here called Eskimos, which are about 80 odd years old, which a tourist complained about and I think from memory again they are changing.

No big deal as it isn't referring to a specific thing involved with founding the company like a surname etc.

It is a term that offends some people in the north it is directly named after
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I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons and I support a slightly longer waiting period to purchase a gun. With today’s Internet technology we should be able to tell within 72-hours if a potential gun owner has a record.

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Old 24th July 2020, 01:20 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by zooterkin View Post
‘coon’ was very much in use in the UK in the 70s; one of Alf Garnett’s favourite words.
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Warning; very racist attitudes. Also, this was broadcast at prime time on mainstream TV in the UK (but not quite in the same league as the Black and White Minstrel Show, which was still going in the late ‘70s).
Fair call

Wasn't on my OE in England in the 70's, but I certainly didn't here it once in the ten years there in the 90's
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Old 24th July 2020, 01:29 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
This is purely from memory, but we have lollies/sweets here called Eskimos, which are about 80 odd years old, which a tourist complained about and I think from memory again they are changing.

No big deal as it isn't referring to a specific thing involved with founding the company like a surname etc.

It is a term that offends some people in the north it is directly named after
My old winter swimming club, the Clovelly Eskimos will be in trouble. Unfortunately.

http://www.wsaainc.com/clovelly-eskimos.html
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Old 24th July 2020, 01:54 AM   #32
Orphia Nay
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Originally Posted by bluesjnr View Post
That's a hell of a load of projection right there. Feeling unconsciously guilty?
I feel guilty for being white because I've had unearned privileges from that.

I can't help feeling guilty.

Are you shaming someone for the same thing?
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Old 24th July 2020, 02:03 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
It comes from an anglosised version of a Scottish surname, so yes it is stupid.
Why does the origin of the name make it stupid to change it? Many businesses have changed a brand name due an unfortunate association with something completely unrelated. They also regularly choose brand names to deliberately associate a product with something unrelated, when it has positive connotations.

You might say "but if it's unrelated then it shouldn't matter!" but the human brain doesn't work that way. No matter how smart you think you are, you can't stop your mind from making those associations. It's not stupid either, but a valuable mnemonic function that greatly enhances our brain power.

But you know what would be stupid? Naming a product after the original owner simply because that was his name - and then not changing it after discovering that it is identical to a racist slur.
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Old 24th July 2020, 02:08 AM   #34
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One of our great wine regions is Coonawarra. Could be next up.
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Old 24th July 2020, 02:21 AM   #35
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Old 24th July 2020, 02:24 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
Why does the origin of the name make it stupid to change it? Many businesses have changed a brand name due an unfortunate association with something completely unrelated. They also regularly choose brand names to deliberately associate a product with something unrelated, when it has positive connotations.

You might say "but if it's unrelated then it shouldn't matter!" but the human brain doesn't work that way. No matter how smart you think you are, you can't stop your mind from making those associations. It's not stupid either, but a valuable mnemonic function that greatly enhances our brain power.

But you know what would be stupid? Naming a product after the original owner simply because that was his name - and then not changing it after discovering that it is identical to a racist slur.
People have and still are been doing something you confess to not be able to do.
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Old 24th July 2020, 02:25 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by Orphia Nay View Post
I feel guilty for being white because I've had unearned privileges from that.
1) Did you, really? Or are you assuming that based on statistics?
2) Did you have anything to do with such a privilege? If not, why feel guilty for something that is not your fault?
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Old 24th July 2020, 02:26 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
People have and still are been doing something you confess to not be able to do.
The problem is that they are being told to make those associations all the time, and a lot of these calls to change names like this don't even come from minorities but from white folks who want to feel like they're doing something right out of a false sense of guilt.
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Old 24th July 2020, 02:27 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
1) Did you, really? Or are you assuming that based on statistics?
2) Did you have anything to do with such a privilege? If not, why feel guilty for something that is not your fault?
You ignored me saying I can't help feeling that way. Tried not to for about 40 years.
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Old 24th July 2020, 02:30 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
The problem is that they are being told to make those associations all the time, and a lot of these calls to change names like this don't even come from minorities but from white folks who want to feel like they're doing something right out of a false sense of guilt.
Fair point. I agree
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