The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #119441   Message #2590993
Posted By: Azizi
17-Mar-09 - 10:18 AM
Thread Name: Homophobia in Playground Rhymes
Subject: RE: Homophobia in Playground Rhymes
Marje, I wrote my latest two post before reading yours. I agree with what you are saying about children testing the limits and trying to make sense about taboos. I also agree that when children use words that insult individuals parents and other adults should let them know that what they said is an insult.

Btw, Marje, I'm unfamiliar with the word "poofter" as you used it in the sentence "Yah, poofter!". By the way that you used it, I'm assuming that it means the same thing as "queer" (a word that I am familiar with as a sometimes derogatory referent for a person who is homosexual). But maybe some folks from the United States know the word "poofter".

Btw2, I realize that working from a degree of disadvantage here in that I'm not only unfamiliar with a lot of British vernacular but I also may be unfamiliar with some Anglo-American vernacular terms. In addition, I find myself editing out some African American slang/vernacular sayings because I (perhaps erroneously) am assuming that most folks here won't be famiiiar with Black American slang/vernacular unless those words/phrases have been absorped into "mainstream" English. For instance, I was going to write that a number of (what I call) the Michael Jackson verses talk about him being "bought up" which I think means that he "got jacked up". But I changed that vernacular to "got messed up".

Richard Bridge, and others, with regard to that word "gay", I continue to maintain that African Americans I know (and African Americans in the mass media) don't use "gay" to mean "of inferior quality". Instead of "gay", we say something that is of poor quality is "jive" or "weak" or "wacked" or "lame" or "garbage" or "Mickey Mouse". That's just a sample. I'm sure there are some oldish terms that I've forgotten and some new terms that I'm not aware of.

I hasten to say that I really enjoy learning about the etymology and different usages for words & phrases. Although these word meaning/usage posts in this thread are somewhat off-topic, I think that they enrich the thread. I'm appreciative of those posts as well as the posts that are more more directly on-topic.