Friday, 11 February 2011

warning, tweets can damage your career

A LD cllr has had to resign his cabinet position after causing offence. He was tweeting while watching last weeks question time and made a comment that some have taken as racist.

Its not enough these days to be merely not racist, he probably isnt a racist and didnt think he would cause offense. We must all be careful what words we use.

Its all to easy to think what your saying is amusing and be surprised at any offense. The point is to 1 be careful what you say. And 2 if you cause offense ; apologise.

He seems to have taken the reaction to his words as a politically motivated attack and ignored it. And now has paid the price.

Surprisingly he seems to be staying on as a cllr, perhaps temporatily.

There is a lesson here for us all, careful what you say. And if offense is caused be strong enough to apologise.

Lets hope the next cabinet member will use their position to the benefit of the people of Reading.



Racism is intentional. One cannot be racist by accident - it is implied and meant.

Using the term 'let's get down to the nitty gritty' for example is not racist if you didn't know or mean it to apply to slaves.

Shouting to an asian person "hey Paki" is racist. Saying "I'm just going to the Paki shop" is not unless it is meant to offend.

Adrian Windisch said...

Not always, there are plenty of examples of something said in innocence that can be interpreted as insulting/racist.

Some recent examples. Remember Emily from Big Brother? Prince Harry saying something caught on video about a friend. Anton Du Beke remarking about Laila Rouass.


I think you're confusing racism with perceived racism.

Do you remember the bloke at Reading station arrested for shouting at two railway employees "you stupid Albanian bastards"?

This was racism however the employees weren't even Albanian.

Many years ago I worked in a record shop and a black guy came in to pick up an order. I couldn't find it and asked him who he'd ordered it from?

He replied "I don't remember - all you white bastards look alike to me" with a smile. I laughed, took no offence and maintain to this day that this was not a racist comment.

I agree that perception is a major element but it does not necessarily imply intent.

Adrian Windisch said...

So in your view 'perceived racism' is not racist? I disagree.

CIA said...

Please explain.

If someone is not aware of the finer details of offence, is called to account and apologises - is that racist?

Adrian Windisch said...

That depends on what was said.

In the examples I gave earlier, it was between friends so not likely to be racist. But as other people took offense an apology was called for.



Perceived racism is NOT racism - why can you not get to grip with that?

No-one ever died defending your right not to be offended - preceived racism does not imply intent and you cannot be accidentially racist.

Adrian Windisch said...

Many people dies for many reasons. I am not offeneded, despite you repeatedly claiming i am.

Theres no point responding to your other points as I have done it so many times already. Just read them.


I'm sorry if I come over as forever having a pop at you - I don't mean to but I have to repeat (because this is a serious point that Green Party members (surrogate offendees) keep getting wrong) - perceived racism does not mean that racism has beem implied or meant. Racism can not be accidental, only intentional.

I apologise yet again if this appears to be a dig - it's not - it's just pointing out that you are very wrong on this point.

Adrian Windisch said...

Thanks, I never would have guessed, its not like you haven't already said it many times already.

I am not offended by you. A little disappointed that you keep repeating things while not responding to what I say. This could be more interesting.