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 Post subject: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 3:04 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 07, 2002 1:01 am
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Location: Bethesda, Md.
It takes my breath away that this column even made it to the copy desk, if in fact that newspaper has a copy desk.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 6:12 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2002 1:01 am
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Location: Everett, Wash.
Maybe this is what Daniel Okrent meant by "and the like."


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 6:15 pm 
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Location: Homebush NSW Australia
I have seen something like this before.
Barbara Billingsley as the Jive Lady in the 1980 movie Airplane (released in Australia and New Zealand as Flying High cause the porn movie of the same name hadn't been released here) does it with more panache.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 6:18 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 02, 2003 1:01 am
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Location: The Herald in Everett, WA
Thank you, Phil, for passing on one of the best cautionary tales I've seen in a long time.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 6:19 pm 
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That column is why middle-aged white guys shouldn't try to rap. Didn't anyone in the Naples newsroom read this before it saw the light of day? It's just ungodly racist, besides being just awful.<p>[ December 08, 2003: Message edited by: kbatdorf ]</p>


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 6:29 pm 
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Location: Homebush NSW Australia
<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by kbatdorf:
It's just ungodly racist
[ December 08, 2003: Message edited by: kbatdorf ]
<hr></blockquote>
*No it isn't.*
White guys on the trains I catch also talk like this.
Why? I don't know, except to recall that we used to think John Travolta in Grease was pretty cool and dressed and spoke accordingly.
Here endeth the confession.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 6:40 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 27, 2002 1:01 am
Posts: 59
Location: La Conner, Wash.
<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Paul Wiggins:

*No it isn't.*
White guys on the trains I catch also talk like this.
Why? I don't know, except to recall that we used to think John Travolta in Grease was pretty cool and dressed and spoke accordingly.
Here endeth the confession.
<hr></blockquote><p>The column, written by a middle-age white guy in the American South, certainly will be perceived by many as racist, and not just by black people.<p>It is without a doubt foolish and unfunny. <p>As for Travolta in "Grease": I don't know what you're talking about.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 6:53 pm 
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Location: Homebush NSW Australia
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Walter:
perceived by many as racist
True, but perception doesn't prove guilt.<p>It is without a doubt foolish and unfunny.
Also true, which makes your perception argument compelling.<p>
As for Travolta in "Grease": I don't know what you're talking about.<p>It was the complete cultural experience.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 9:38 pm 
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Location: U.S.A.
<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Paul Wiggins:
*No it isn't.*
<hr></blockquote><p>Yes it is.<p>Paul, I wish I could say this more tactfully than "You're not an American, you don't understand the cultural mores here. Trust me, it's racist, or at the very least so grossly unsensitive that it deserves another column just to offer an apology."<p>But I can't.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 9:56 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 28, 2003 1:01 am
Posts: 131
Location: South of Detroit
That is in about the worst taste I can imagine. And so stupidly done. Cautionary tale, indeed....


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 10:05 pm 
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Location: Homebush NSW Australia
No need for tact. I do agree, intentionally or unintentionally its racist. But I think it's worthwhile to apply the Socratic method when people use that word racist. It would be interesting to hear the columnist's defence.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 10:28 pm 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Paul Wiggins:
It would be interesting to hear the columnist's defence.<hr></blockquote><p>It would at that.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2003 11:43 pm 
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Location: Cusp of retirement, grave or both
Paul,<p>By U.S. standards, this column is stupid and highly offensive. <p>I can't believe it was published.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2003 12:29 am 
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Location: Homebush NSW Australia
Yes. yes and yes, it is offensive. But such things don't exist in vacuums. There must be some sort of iconoclastic, deconstructivist or chemically induced motive from the more than one person it would have taken for this to go to press. And it is that motive I am fishing for.
I'd really like to know from these folks
The E.W. Scripps Company, a diversified media concern with interests in newspaper publishing, broadcast television, national television networks, interactive media and television retailing, is an equal opportunity employer and a drug-free workplace. why.
thenwe can really rip into 'em.[


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2003 7:20 am 
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Location: Suburban Chicago
<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Bumfketeer:
Paul,<p>By U.S. standards, this column is stupid and highly offensive. <p>I can't believe it was published.<hr></blockquote><p>A letter to the editor in today's Naples Daily News:
--------------
Hop to it <p>Editor, Naples Daily News: <p>As a 20-year member of the hip-hop culture, I have seen and heard many ignorant and offensive characterizations of this culture, but I have never been so offended as I was after reading Brent Batten's column describing the cancellation of the Hip Hop Winterfest. <p>Your attempt at humor was not only offensive, but condescending and irresponsible. This sort of mockery promotes the misconception that "fans of the genre" are unable to communicate in standard American English and that in order to communicate effectively with this audience, one must abandon the rules and mechanics of standard, written English. <p>You probably don't realize the impact that your article may have had, but it, perhaps unwittingly, encourages prejudice toward this culture and those associated with it. I sincerely hope that this attempt at journalism, which condones bias against a large and ever-growing segment of our society. was done out of naivet and ignorance, and not out of malice or an intent to ridicule that which you, apparently, do not understand. <p>I suggest that, in the future, you consider your choice of words, or in this case outdated colloquialisms, a bit more carefully before disseminating such drivel to the readership of the Naples Daily News. <p>
Okito Boothe/Gainesville


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2003 10:01 am 
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Location: La Conner, Wash.
<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Todd J. Behme:
<p>A letter to the editor in today's Naples Daily News:
--------------
Hop to it <p>Editor, Naples Daily News: <p>As a 20-year member of the hip-hop culture, I have seen and heard many ignorant and offensive characterizations of this culture, but I have never been so offended as I was after reading Brent Batten's column describing the cancellation of the Hip Hop Winterfest.
<hr></blockquote><p>Well, like anything that's taken too seriously, the "hip-hop culture" is certainly open to satire and ridicule. But some typical doofus local columnist at some typical local daily isn't the person for the job.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2003 10:38 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2002 12:01 am
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Location: San Jose, CA
Maybe we need Poynter to give us a seminar on editing humor. <p>The guy is a humor columnist most of the time (hardly ever funny, but how many of them are?)... he needed somebody to steer him towards a funny way of doing the column.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2003 11:52 am 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by tom mangan:
Maybe we need Poynter to give us a seminar on editing humor.<hr></blockquote><p>***No, we don't.***


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2003 2:52 pm 
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Location: Baltimore, Maryland
<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by blanp:
It takes my breath away that this column even made it to the copy desk, if in fact that newspaper has a copy desk.<hr></blockquote><p>When I conduct seances on editing at other papers, I find that their columnists almost invariably furnish the lamest, most self-indulgent and dullest writing in the paper. Most appear to have exhausted what intellectual capital they brought to the job within a few months. <p>Come the revolution, when they set up the guillotine in the public square and bring the columnists in by tumbril, I will take up knitting so that I can join the tricoteuses in the front row to watch the heads fall into the baset.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2003 4:25 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 18, 2002 12:01 am
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Location: In the newsroom
<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Gary Kirchherr:
<p>***No, we don't.***<hr></blockquote>
I thought he was kidding.


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 Post subject: Re: Every Time I Think I've Seen It All ... Dept.
PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2003 2:29 am 
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Location: San Jose, CA
<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by SusanV:

I thought he was kidding.
<hr></blockquote><p>
I was, but I chuckled at **no, we don't** because it seemed just emphatic enough to discourage anybody who didn't get the joke.


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