All these words we use and get so emotional about them. People get offended because they add their emotions, their perspective to the words said by others, but the speaker can have a completely different perception of the word.
We are judgemental and believe that our understanding is the only one and that everyone thinks like this. But this is not true. We all have different experiences, perceptions, and beliefs.
I heard so many times, after making a statement, someone asking: Is it good or bad; Is it right or wrong. There is right and wrong, good and bad in everything. IT depends on what we focus, what is our objective, our preference. The Yin and Yang sign shows it beautifully.
In 1975 I moved from Poland to London. It was the time when political correctness was ramping the scenes. Calling someone “black” was an offence. At that time many Polish people got to the court accused of racism and could not understand why. Why is calling someone black racist? It was not in Poland. In fact, referring to someone as black would if any bring sympathetic emotions.
I remember my first day at school in London. I was sitting alone in the common room looking for someone to connect, someone sympathetic and I saw this black guy on the other side of the room, he looked friendly. As I stood up to approach him, he started to move away so I shouted:
“Hey you black”.
There was a sudden silence in the room, all eyes on me and someone said:
“I cannot believe you are so racist.” I could not understand where did that come from and asked “why are you calling me racist?
“Because what you called him”
I was surprised and remembering what I just said I repeated:
“I called him back”
“I cannot believe she said it again” came from the room.
I still did not get it, what is their problem? And I said:
“It does not prove I am racist; it proves I am not blind”
There was an uproar. My mind was franticly trying to understand what is the connection between calling someone black and being a racist, finely I got it, they think that there is something wrong, bad in being black so I said:
“Calling someone black is racist, only in a racist society”
Everyone left the room except for Jim – the guy I was calling. Seems he was the only person in the room not offended by what I said and I was taking about him.
In Poland calling someone black was favourable, black hair, darker skin was uncommon and hence considered more attractive.