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A chink in Jeremy Lin's armor

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Franklin Delano Bluth
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A chink in Jeremy Lin's armor

Postby Franklin Delano Bluth » Thu Aug 16, 2012 5:36 am

Many of all y'all may remember several months ago that a couple of ESPN employees were fired after the ESPN website ran a story by them whose headline mentioned a chink in Jeremy Lin's armor. The phrase is itself a common one, referring to a weakness which has been discovered and exploited--in this case, in Lin's basketball game. The problem in this case, however, came about because Lin is Chinese-American (ok, Taiwan), which makes an alternate meaning of the word "chink" relevant.

While I've no doubt that the ESPN employees meant it totally innocently, I get that for something that ran in print, unless they can honestly claim that they had never heard "chink" used as a slur against individuals of Asian origins they should have caught it before it went public.

My question is, would such a slip-up be more excusable if it were made on a live TV broadcast rather than in a print medium? After all, the phrase itself is not uncommon; it occurred to these ESPN employees, and I can see it also occurring to a TV play-by-play or color commentator--who, unlike the print writers, has to say something right there and then and doesn't have the benefit of half an hour or so to think about exactly what he or she is saying before it goes public.

Perhaps a comparison might be made to Howard Cosell's "Little monkey" remark, but I think the difference is that I am aware of no situation where "little monkey" is used to refer to someone (except perhaps as a term of endearment for a small child by an adoring parent or grandparent) where it is not used as a racial slur, whereas "chink in the armor" is a phrase with a history that long predates the use of the word "chink" as a slur against Asians or people of Asian origin, and still is not uncommon in general use with no derogatory meaning implied.
Last edited by Franklin Delano Bluth on Thu Aug 16, 2012 5:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Risottia
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Postby Risottia » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:07 am

Franklin Delano Bluth wrote:Many of all y'all may remember several months ago that a couple of ESPN employees were fired after the ESPN website ran a story by them whose headline mentioned a chink in Jeremy Lin's armor. The phrase is itself a common one, referring to a weakness which has been discovered and exploited--in this case, in Lin's basketball game. The problem in this case, however, came about because Lin is Chinese-American (ok, Taiwan), which makes an alternate meaning of the word "chink" relevant.


Oh wow. Now one should alter the English dictionary lest Taiwanese basketball players feel insulted...
Really, have people got nothing better to do than playing victim?

An apt comparison would be me complaining about the sentence "Risottia owns a pet guinea pig" or "Risottia took a trip to Guinea". OMG RACIAL SLUR! :roll:

Feh.
Last edited by Risottia on Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:10 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Alyekra
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Postby Alyekra » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:08 am

Oh please. Get over it. It's a common phrase, there is absolutely no reason to be offended. Man up.
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Lackadaisical2
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Postby Lackadaisical2 » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:09 am

Risottia wrote:
Franklin Delano Bluth wrote:Many of all y'all may remember several months ago that a couple of ESPN employees were fired after the ESPN website ran a story by them whose headline mentioned a chink in Jeremy Lin's armor. The phrase is itself a common one, referring to a weakness which has been discovered and exploited--in this case, in Lin's basketball game. The problem in this case, however, came about because Lin is Chinese-American (ok, Taiwan), which makes an alternate meaning of the word "chink" relevant.


Oh wow. Now one should alter the English dictionary lest Taiwanese basketball players feel insulted...
Really, have people got nothing better to do than playing victim?

Was Lin(or anyone else) actually insulted by it, or was it just precaution by ESPN?
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Big Jim P
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Postby Big Jim P » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:10 am

Risottia wrote:
Franklin Delano Bluth wrote:Many of all y'all may remember several months ago that a couple of ESPN employees were fired after the ESPN website ran a story by them whose headline mentioned a chink in Jeremy Lin's armor. The phrase is itself a common one, referring to a weakness which has been discovered and exploited--in this case, in Lin's basketball game. The problem in this case, however, came about because Lin is Chinese-American (ok, Taiwan), which makes an alternate meaning of the word "chink" relevant.


Oh wow. Now one should alter the English dictionary lest Taiwanese basketball players feel insulted...
Really, have people got nothing better to do than playing victim?

An apt comparison would be me complaining about the sentence "Risottia owns a pet guinea pig". OMG RACIAL SLUR!

Feh.


No, people don't have anything better to do than play victim.
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Risottia
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Postby Risottia » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:11 am

Lackadaisical2 wrote:Was Lin(or anyone else) actually insulted by it, or was it just precaution by ESPN?


Dunno, personally it looks to me more like ESPN playing uber-PC... in favour of a rich basketball player on the skin of two workers.
Last edited by Risottia on Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:12 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Khadgar
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Postby Khadgar » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:26 am

Reminds me of a few years ago when some dolt without access to a dictionary took offense to the word Niggardly.

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Bombadil
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Postby Bombadil » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:33 am

To answer the question rather than make tedious remarks about how no one should be offended by anything..

Where it's in print there's some thought given to the headline and within that thought process should be an understanding that 'chink in the armour' could be unnecessary, regardless of whether people should 'man up' to a derogatory term that comes with a history.

In the spoken word, I think some leniency should be given where it's a common phrase as opposed to 'nattyhead' ho, where the only meaning associated with the term is derogatory.

That is, 'chink in the armour' has a meaning entirely divorced from racism where given the forethought in print one might assume knowledge of the alternative reference but in speech one could make allowances.

EDIT: ..and in re-reading your OP I see that I've merely repeated your opinion in different words. I could have just said 'I agree' and saved turning energy latent, I shall surely be judged.
Last edited by Bombadil on Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
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TaQud
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Postby TaQud » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:35 am

Lackadaisical2 wrote:
Risottia wrote:
Oh wow. Now one should alter the English dictionary lest Taiwanese basketball players feel insulted...
Really, have people got nothing better to do than playing victim?

Was Lin(or anyone else) actually insulted by it, or was it just precaution by ESPN?

it was a precaution by ESPN
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Postby Ifreann » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:38 am

That's not how you make a "chink in my armour" joke. This is.
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TaQud
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Postby TaQud » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:39 am

Ifreann wrote:That's not how you make a "chink in my armour" joke. This is.

:rofl:
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Big Jim P
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Postby Big Jim P » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:39 am

Ifreann wrote:That's not how you make a "chink in my armour" joke. This is.


:rofl:
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Franklin Delano Bluth
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Postby Franklin Delano Bluth » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:40 am

Bombadil wrote:To answer the question rather than make tedious remarks about how no one should be offended by anything..

Where it's in print there's some thought given to the headline and within that thought process should be an understanding that 'chink in the armour' could be unnecessary, regardless of whether people should 'man up' to a derogatory term that comes with a history.

In the spoken word, I think some leniency should be given where it's a common phrase as opposed to 'nattyhead' ho, where the only meaning associated with the term is derogatory.

That is, 'chink in the armour' has a meaning entirely divorced from racism where given the forethought in print one might assume knowledge of the alternative reference but in speech one could make allowances.

EDIT: ..and in re-reading your OP I see that I've merely repeated your opinion in different words. I could have just said 'I agree' and saved turning energy latent, I shall surely be judged.


Goldberry is now leaving you for Manwe (yes, I'm too lazy for diacritics).
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Franklin Delano Bluth
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Postby Franklin Delano Bluth » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:40 am

Bombadil wrote:To answer the question rather than make tedious remarks about how no one should be offended by anything..

Where it's in print there's some thought given to the headline and within that thought process should be an understanding that 'chink in the armour' could be unnecessary, regardless of whether people should 'man up' to a derogatory term that comes with a history.

In the spoken word, I think some leniency should be given where it's a common phrase as opposed to 'nattyhead' ho, where the only meaning associated with the term is derogatory.

That is, 'chink in the armour' has a meaning entirely divorced from racism where given the forethought in print one might assume knowledge of the alternative reference but in speech one could make allowances.

EDIT: ..and in re-reading your OP I see that I've merely repeated your opinion in different words. I could have just said 'I agree' and saved turning energy latent, I shall surely be judged.


Goldberry is now leaving you for Manwe (yes, I'm too lazy for diacritics).
The American Legion is a neo-fascist terrorist organization, bent on implementing Paulinist Sharia, and with a history of pogroms against organized labor and peace activists and of lynching those who dare resist or defend themselves against its aggression.

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Tian Lung
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Postby Tian Lung » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:41 am

Remember the David Howard incident in Washington DC, in which he was fired (!) for using the word "niggardly" during a budget meeting?

Even Julian Bond, who was the NAACP president, said "David Howard should not have quit. Mayor Williams should bring him back — and order dictionaries issued to all staff who need them." He also added that "The US has a "hair-trigger sensibility" on race that can be tripped by both real and false grievances."

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Rubiconic Crossings V2 rev 1f
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Postby Rubiconic Crossings V2 rev 1f » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:44 am

Risottia wrote:
Franklin Delano Bluth wrote:Many of all y'all may remember several months ago that a couple of ESPN employees were fired after the ESPN website ran a story by them whose headline mentioned a chink in Jeremy Lin's armor. The phrase is itself a common one, referring to a weakness which has been discovered and exploited--in this case, in Lin's basketball game. The problem in this case, however, came about because Lin is Chinese-American (ok, Taiwan), which makes an alternate meaning of the word "chink" relevant.


Oh wow. Now one should alter the English dictionary lest Taiwanese basketball players feel insulted...
Really, have people got nothing better to do than playing victim?

An apt comparison would be me complaining about the sentence "Risottia owns a pet guinea pig" or "Risottia took a trip to Guinea". OMG RACIAL SLUR! :roll:

Feh.


Risottia took a trip to Guinea with his pet guinea pig. /nod
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Bombadil
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Postby Bombadil » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:45 am

Franklin Delano Bluth wrote:
Bombadil wrote:To answer the question rather than make tedious remarks about how no one should be offended by anything..

Where it's in print there's some thought given to the headline and within that thought process should be an understanding that 'chink in the armour' could be unnecessary, regardless of whether people should 'man up' to a derogatory term that comes with a history.

In the spoken word, I think some leniency should be given where it's a common phrase as opposed to 'nattyhead' ho, where the only meaning associated with the term is derogatory.

That is, 'chink in the armour' has a meaning entirely divorced from racism where given the forethought in print one might assume knowledge of the alternative reference but in speech one could make allowances.

EDIT: ..and in re-reading your OP I see that I've merely repeated your opinion in different words. I could have just said 'I agree' and saved turning energy latent, I shall surely be judged.


Goldberry is now leaving you for Manwe (yes, I'm too lazy for diacritics).


Varda will be pissed..
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The Greater East Asian Coalition
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Postby The Greater East Asian Coalition » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:45 am

As a Chinese-American, I feel that the only way to appease for this most horrific crime is to replace all referrences between Jeremy Lin and Taiwan with North Korean ones. Only then will our Chinese Overlords be pleased, for they are the true ones running ESPN.

In all seriousness though, as long as Lin finds it in a metaphoric term, everything is fine. Heck, this is one of the only times I've heard the word 'chink' used in years.

In any case, this is not much worse than 'Hitler Did Nothing Wrong' -flavored Mountain Dew.
Last edited by The Greater East Asian Coalition on Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Franklin Delano Bluth
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Postby Franklin Delano Bluth » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:46 am

Bombadil wrote:
Franklin Delano Bluth wrote:
Goldberry is now leaving you for Manwe (yes, I'm too lazy for diacritics).


Varda will be pissed..


Not to mention Eru, who'll be all like, "No son of mine!"
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Bombadil
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Postby Bombadil » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:48 am

Franklin Delano Bluth wrote:
Bombadil wrote:
Varda will be pissed..


Not to mention Eru, who'll be all like, "No son of mine!"


Melkor will be like all 'oh not so perfect brother now eh, eh Dad?'
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TaQud
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Postby TaQud » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:50 am

The Greater East Asian Coalition wrote:In any case, this is not much worse than 'Hitler Did Nothing Wrong' -flavored Mountain Dew.

only on 4chan :p
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Greed and Death
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Postby Greed and Death » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:52 am

The reason for the punishment was a lot of tongue in cheek racist comments had been made in other media in regards to Lin. The Asian community had made issue with the previous comments, a written work should have screened for something offensive.

If I innocently publish a phrase that makes reference to a sexual act in a publication for children I would also expect to be fired.

If one person or a group of people put you on notice that something is offensive in a certain context, it is not PC to avoid that certain phrase or context, it is polite.
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Lincoltshire
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Postby Lincoltshire » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:58 am

They were probably being niggardly with their finances and needed an excuse to cut a few employees.
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The House of Petain
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Postby The House of Petain » Thu Aug 16, 2012 7:46 am

I suspect they were trying to be clever, just not as many people were laughing.
Last edited by The House of Petain on Thu Aug 16, 2012 7:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
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L Ron Cupboard
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Postby L Ron Cupboard » Thu Aug 16, 2012 7:52 am

So the American media didn't yank the story then?
Last edited by L Ron Cupboard on Thu Aug 16, 2012 7:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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