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Brashkoala
Aug 25th, 2006, 05:50 AM
today at work, some coworkers and i were talking about our ethnicity and heritage. one of them, who is peruvian, told another coworker that she spoke spanish and that she was born in the south american country. the coworker who was told this acted really surpised and said that she always thought she was arab. my coworker has black hair, black eyes, and caramel skin so i didnt think much of the comparison. but she got really upset and annoyed by being confused as an arab. so im thinking is it an insult, a compliment, or neither to be confused as being an arab? furthermore, is she a racist?

tennisbum79
Aug 25th, 2006, 05:59 AM
today at work, some coworkers and i were talking about our ethnicity and heritage. one of them, who is peruvian, told another coworker that she spoke spanish and that she was born in the south american country. the coworker who was told this acted really surpised and said that she always thought she was arab. my coworker has black hair, black eyes, and caramel skin so i didnt think much of the comparison. but she got really upset and annoyed by being confused as an arab. so im thinking is it an insult, a compliment, or neither to be confused as being an arab? furthermore, is she a racist?

I don't think she is racist, it is sign of the times.
It is tough being Arab in the US right now.

I am told that this also exist in some Caribean countries and South America.
In Dominican Republic for example, someone with light skin but with black features and who would normally be called black in the US, would find it insulting to be referred as black. I am also told that it is these people who are the most frustrated and confused when they immigrate to the US.
They do not undertand why there is no categroy for them.

Wannabeknowitall
Aug 25th, 2006, 06:00 AM
I confuse Middle East features with Latino features sometimes myself. I think it's neither an insult or a compliment. Latino, Arab, it doesn't matter they're all hot.

RVD
Aug 25th, 2006, 06:04 AM
today at work, some coworkers and i were talking about our ethnicity and heritage. one of them, who is peruvian, told another coworker that she spoke spanish and that she was born in the south american country. the coworker who was told this acted really surpised and said that she always thought she was arab. my coworker has black hair, black eyes, and caramel skin so i didnt think much of the comparison. but she got really upset and annoyed by being confused as an arab. so im thinking is it an insult, a compliment, or neither to be confused as being an arab? furthermore, is she a racist?Naw, your co-worker is either overly sensitive or very particular. Some people just don't take to being confused with other ethnic groups, even though many groups do resemble one another. She or he should just calmly and tactfully explain what he/she is and not assume that everyone automatically knows. :shrug: But his/her reaction is not what I'd term racist at all. :)

controlfreak
Aug 25th, 2006, 10:13 AM
couldn't they tell by the way she speaks?

Wigglytuff
Aug 25th, 2006, 10:39 AM
Naw, your co-worker is either overly sensitive or very particular. Some people just don't take to being confused with other ethnic groups, even though many groups do resemble one another. She or he should just calmly and tactfully explain what he/she is and not assume that everyone automatically knows. :shrug: But his/her reaction is not what I'd term racist at all. :)
yep

samsung101
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:09 PM
Uh, no.

Just a comment from a co-worker. Dumb comment.
Not very bright, why even say it at all.

Why assume anything is racist?

Can't people, co-workers, friends, just talk and
make comments? Even stupid, dumb comments that
annoy each other.



I've had people say that to me, Arab, South American,
Phillipino....how i fit into all those categories is beyond me.

Now, if they get my age wrong, that's insulting.... ha ha.

But, I just say, no I'm that rare thing: a 3rd generation
native Californian. Not many of us around.

CooCooCachoo
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:12 PM
I would not be happy if someone mistook me for a German :shrug: Or for someone from Luxembourg :shrug:

I don't think there is anything wrong with it.

hablo
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:16 PM
today at work, some coworkers and i were talking about our ethnicity and heritage. one of them, who is peruvian, told another coworker that she spoke spanish and that she was born in the south american country. the coworker who was told this acted really surpised and said that she always thought she was arab. my coworker has black hair, black eyes, and caramel skin so i didnt think much of the comparison. but she got really upset and annoyed by being confused as an arab. so im thinking is it an insult, a compliment, or neither to be confused as being an arab? furthermore, is she a racist?
Not really, I'm mixed but people never guess where I'm from exactly and it can get irritating.
and not all arabs have black hair, black eyes and caramel skin, so I can relate to her irritation :help:

Martian KC
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:21 PM
I'm always confused for being Hispanic, but I don't find it offensive. Odd@her behavior.

Hulet
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:21 PM
today at work, some coworkers and i were talking about our ethnicity and heritage. one of them, who is peruvian, told another coworker that she spoke spanish and that she was born in the south american country. the coworker who was told this acted really surpised and said that she always thought she was arab. my coworker has black hair, black eyes, and caramel skin so i didnt think much of the comparison. but she got really upset and annoyed by being confused as an arab. so im thinking is it an insult, a compliment, or neither to be confused as being an arab? furthermore, is she a racist?
Just being pragmatic.

Wiggly
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:27 PM
Maybe she's just proud of being a Latino :D

SJW
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:30 PM
I get annoyed when people in America think I'm African.
I'm sure it would be different somewhere like New York where they have more people from the Caribbean.
There's a lot of history between African vs West Indians ;)

Hulet
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:32 PM
I get annoyed when people in America think I'm African.
I'm sure it would be different somewhere like New York where they have more people from the Caribbean.
There's a lot of history between African vs West Indians ;)
I know some stupid people who think the exact opposite.
Why are you annoyed?

SJW
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:42 PM
I know some stupid people who think the exact opposite.
Why are you annoyed?

For the same reason white Americans look at me surprised when they hear my accent.
Apparently I should be called Latiqua or something and talk in ebonics.
When my leasing manager talked to me on the phone, I went to meet her and she said "Oh! I thought you were white!"
What's wrong with being annoyed by incorrect assumptions?

Volcana
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:45 PM
it an insult, a compliment, or neither to be confused as being an arab?Neither
furthermore, is she a racist?The person getting upset is displaying more internalized racial attitude than the person who made the mistake. Could be the person who made the mistake doesn't really understand what Arabs look like. But I don't see any racial bias as you describe it.

Hulet
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:47 PM
For the same reason white Americans look at me surprised when they hear my accent.
Apparently I should be called Latiqua or something and talk in ebonics.
When my leasing manager talked to me on the phone, I went to meet her and she said "Oh! I thought you were white!"
What's wrong with being annoyed by incorrect assumptions?
I was just curious. I thought may be you were thinking like those "some stupid people" I mentioned in the previous post that being African or Caribbean is better than the other or whatever.

hingis-seles
Aug 25th, 2006, 03:49 PM
I went to Dubai this year and during the Mauresmo-Nagyova match, the man sitting next to me asked me if I was from France because I was speaking in French (whatever little I do know!) and I replied I wasn't so he said "Ahh, you must be Algerian." and I was like no, I'm Pakistani at which point he told me I didn't look like one or speak like one. I just did an "umm...okay." He was Czech, btw. ;)

Apoleb
Aug 25th, 2006, 04:14 PM
Well, if she was so offended and disgusted that she was mistaken for an Arab, then she definitely doesn't think highly of Arabs. Let's just put it this way.

samsung101
Aug 25th, 2006, 04:22 PM
Everything that may insult you or offend you is not
intended as a racist comment, anymore than what
was said was intended to insult or offend you.

Some people say stupid things, their brains are
on hiberation mode, and then, bam, dumb thing
comes out, and they don't even get it.


Brainfreeze.


The lights are on, but nobodys home upstairs.




Get a thicker skin people.



We should all lighten up.

If she keeps saying things that are derogatory or
aimed at degrading Arabs, then, yeah, she has
a bias of some kind. You know now. But, I'd cut
the person some slack, if this has never come up
before.
.

Apoleb
Aug 25th, 2006, 04:24 PM
Why would annyone be so offended if they are mistaken to be from a certain ethnicity? Big fucking deal.

I am Lebanese and I was mistaken for an Israeli or a South American several times, and I don't act like I'm going to throw up.

Clearly, if this co-worker took the comparison to an Arab as an insult, then she isn't too fond of Arabs. Doesn't take a genius to figure that out.

Hulet
Aug 25th, 2006, 04:29 PM
Why would annyone be so offended if they are mistaken to be from a certain ethnicity? Big fucking deal.

I am Lebanese and I was mistaken for an Israeli or a South American several times, and I don't act like I'm going to throw up.

Clearly, if this co-worker took the comparison to an Arab as an insult, then she isn't too fond of Arabs. Doesn't take a genius to figure that out.
Not necessarily Jorje286, may be she knows that Arabs are treated suspiciously around her and doesn't want to be treated similarly. She might even be sympathetic to Arabs but times are such that one has to act offended by being compared to Arabs just to turn unwanted attention from oneself.

SelesFan70
Aug 25th, 2006, 04:47 PM
No, but y'all have obviously got way too much time on your hands at work. :tape:

gentenaire
Aug 25th, 2006, 05:11 PM
As a child, I was convinced my sister's best friend was from Africa, no matter how many times my mother told me she was Indian. She was black, therefore she was African. Little did I know.
I also remember being very disappointed when the new classmate from South Africa arrived. For weeks, I'd been looking forward to having a black classmate (I liked blacks because I thought my sister's best friend was the coolest person in the world), to my utter disappointment, the girl turned out to be white. I remember asking my mother why the girl was white. As far as I knew, all Africans were black.

Does that make me a racist? I simply didn't know any better.

Apoleb
Aug 25th, 2006, 05:43 PM
As a child, I was convinced my sister's best friend was from Africa, no matter how many times my mother told me she was Indian. She was black, therefore she was African. Little did I know.
I also remember being very disappointed when the new classmate from South Africa arrived. For weeks, I'd been looking forward to having a black classmate (I liked blacks because I thought my sister's best friend was the coolest person in the world), to my utter disappointment, the girl turned out to be white. I remember asking my mother why the girl was white. As far as I knew, all Africans were black.

Does that make me a racist? I simply didn't know any better.

I think the thread starter is asking us to judge the co-worker that felt insulted when being thought of as an Arab, not the one who thought she was an Arab.

ezekiel
Aug 25th, 2006, 06:07 PM
As far as the initial post, I think it's just a little over reaction to the issue . Some people are just too proud of themselves and their background or too ignorant of others and sensibilities involved.

I was mistaken for latino and greek several times because of my generally dark features . I was flattered but a little annoyed because they started talking to me in a tongue I did not understand .

Helen Lawson
Aug 25th, 2006, 06:17 PM
Tell your co-worker you thought she was Mexican. Her reaction should answer your question.

Lord Nelson
Aug 25th, 2006, 06:25 PM
today at work, some coworkers and i were talking about our ethnicity and heritage. one of them, who is peruvian, told another coworker that she spoke spanish and that she was born in the south american country. the coworker who was told this acted really surpised and said that she always thought she was arab. my coworker has black hair, black eyes, and caramel skin so i didnt think much of the comparison. but she got really upset and annoyed by being confused as an arab. so im thinking is it an insult, a compliment, or neither to be confused as being an arab? furthermore, is she a racist?
She must not like the arab culture. It is her right, nothing racist about that. One can't like every culure you know. Are arabs who don't like Israelis, racist? As long as she does not make any racist comments then it is ok she is not a racist.
Your last sentence question could have been asked in a better way. Ok it is an insult, happy? :p

Question stupide, réponse bête.

Pheobo
Aug 25th, 2006, 07:14 PM
If she has black eyes she's probably not really from South America...she's from hell.

Volcana
Aug 25th, 2006, 07:32 PM
Why would annyone be so offended if they are mistaken to be from a certain ethnicity? Big fucking deal.Well, I'd be upset if I were mistaken for a Bush Republican, but that's a mental illness, not an ethnicity. :)

venus_rulez
Aug 25th, 2006, 08:35 PM
For the same reason white Americans look at me surprised when they hear my accent.
Apparently I should be called Latiqua or something and talk in ebonics.
When my leasing manager talked to me on the phone, I went to meet her and she said "Oh! I thought you were white!"
What's wrong with being annoyed by incorrect assumptions?


Don't you think that is different though? People make assumptions about your race because of the way you talk. Basically they are saying because you talk in an educated manner you can't be anything but White. that is very offensive. The co-worker, in this case, seems to just have confused features for another race.

No Name Face
Aug 25th, 2006, 09:56 PM
I get annoyed when people in America think I'm African.
I'm sure it would be different somewhere like New York where they have more people from the Caribbean.
There's a lot of history between African vs West Indians ;)

agreed. not all blacks are african american and i hate how we get generalized like that. i would much rather people call me black than african american. they think they're being pc when they're really generalizing...ironic

SJW
Aug 25th, 2006, 10:02 PM
Don't you think that is different though? People make assumptions about your race because of the way you talk. Basically they are saying because you talk in an educated manner you can't be anything but White. that is very offensive. The co-worker, in this case, seems to just have confused features for another race.

Ok I guess it's different but my point was because of the "incorrect assumptions" and why I find them annoying

agreed. not all blacks are african american and i hate how we get generalized like that. i would much rather people call me black than african american. they think they're being pc when they're really generalizing...ironic

Agreed BUT your dad's Jamaican-American right? You don't have the same ties to Jamaica as I do to Barbados. My parents, grandparents, aunts and Uncles still have their accent and Bajan culture is part of my everyday life. You basically ARE African-American now (accent, identity, cultural values, the way you were brought up and such), and your children will be too. I have an English accent, grew up in a West Indian household and there are notable differences between myself and English people and myself and African-Americans. If I had children in America and embraced American culture and values and they grew up like that, they would be African-American too.

hablo
Aug 25th, 2006, 10:12 PM
agreed. not all blacks are african american and i hate how we get generalized like that. i would much rather people call me black than african american. they think they're being pc when they're really generalizing...ironic
true.

ceiling_fan
Aug 25th, 2006, 11:46 PM
you would be annoyed given the situation atm.

I know an Irani friend who likes calling herself "Persian" so people don't think of her as Arab, and therefore prejudge her

Brashkoala
Aug 26th, 2006, 02:17 AM
i asked my coworker, who is my age, to tell me about her growing up. her family is from peru and she was born in peru. she moved to the states when she was seven and told me that she lived in a suburb of los angeles. she said that she has been exposed to all types of races and cultures but that she grew up mostly around white people. i then asked her how come she got upset when she was mistaken for an arab yesterday and she said a couple of things that kind of bothered me. she said that since 9/11 she has only been exposed to negative news and media regarding arab people and people from the middle east and she also said that she didn't think they were attractive people as a race and that it got her mad when she was mistaken for one. she also told me that when she was little she looked white but as she started to grown up she got more and more tan until she had light brown skin and that she wishes she were more white. i actually think she is a bit racist mixed in with the way she was brought up. all this happened during our lunch break.

tennisbum79
Aug 26th, 2006, 02:41 AM
i asked my coworker, who is my age, to tell me about her growing up. her family is from peru and she was born in peru. she moved to the states when she was seven and told me that she lived in a suburb of los angeles. she said that she has been exposed to all types of races and cultures but that she grew up mostly around white people. i then asked her how come she got upset when she was mistaken for an arab yesterday and she said a couple of things that kind of bothered me. she said that since 9/11 she has only been exposed to negative news and media regarding arab people and people from the middle east and she also said that she didn't think they were attractive people as a race and that it got her mad when she was mistaken for one. she also told me that when she was little she looked white but as she started to grown up she got more and more tan until she had light brown skin and that she wishes she were more white. i actually think she is a bit racist mixed in with the way she was brought up. all this happened during our lunch break.

Your co-worker exhibits something I have noticed in few South Americans I know.
Many who are mixed of Indian blood and White blood, tend to run away from the darker side of their ancestry.

It even presents a big problem for marriage.
Parents with whiter skin, european features, will not approve their children marrying mestisos, or worse, some one with very Indian look

You can also see this playing out in political representation.

tennisbum79
Aug 26th, 2006, 02:46 AM
People from Argentinia I know tend to always state, without being asked,
that their country is majority whites.

Which is always a jab to the next door neighbor and rival Brazil, which as we know, has a much more diverse population black africans, Indian, Asian, Portuguese, Arabs

drake3781
Aug 26th, 2006, 04:34 AM
People from Argentinia I know tend to always state, without being asked,
that their country is majority whites.

Which is always a jab to the next door neighbor and rival Brazil, which as we know, has a much more diverse population black africans, Indian, Asian, Portuguese, Arabs

I've worked extensively with people from Argentina, and visted there, and have never heard this stated by Argentinians. I believe I have heard them describe their country as more "European" than others in South America; however I took it to mean a culturall rather than racial statement.

A Peruvian with whom I was talking just last week made the same statement that Argentina is "European". In the context of that conversation it was a cultural and political reference.

I find Chile - at least Santiago where I have visited - much the same way. It has a European feel.

I have also never noticed a rivalry between the Argentinians and Brazilians with whom I work together... perhape is is there and I was not aware of it.

As you said, Brazil is a country with a very diverse population and rich culture.

tennisbum79
Aug 26th, 2006, 04:47 AM
I've worked extensively with people from Argentina, and visted there, and have never heard this stated by Argentinians. I believe I have heard them describe their country as more "European" than others in South America; however I took it to mean a culturall rather than racial statement.

A Peruvian with whom I was talking just last week made the same statement that Argentina is "European". In the context of that conversation it was a cultural and political reference.

I find Chile - at least Santiago where I have visited - much the same way. It has a European feel.

I have also never noticed a rivalry between the Argentinians and Brazilians with whom I work together... perhape is is there and I was not aware of it.

As you said, Brazil is a country with a very diverse population and rich culture.

The ones I know always say whites, I have never heard them say Europeans.
Even if they say European, what do you think they are trying to convey by
emphasizing their European side?
After all, they are in South America.

SJW
Aug 26th, 2006, 04:37 PM
I have also never noticed a rivalry between the Argentinians and Brazilians with whom I work together... perhape is is there and I was not aware of it.


That's most likely it.

No Name Face
Aug 26th, 2006, 09:06 PM
Agreed BUT your dad's Jamaican-American right? You don't have the same ties to Jamaica as I do to Barbados. My parents, grandparents, aunts and Uncles still have their accent and Bajan culture is part of my everyday life. You basically ARE African-American now (accent, identity, cultural values, the way you were brought up and such), and your children will be too. I have an English accent, grew up in a West Indian household and there are notable differences between myself and English people and myself and African-Americans. If I had children in America and embraced American culture and values and they grew up like that, they would be African-American too.

i see. but then wouldn't i be west-indian american and not african american? or does that not matter? :confused:

and just for the record, my dad isn't jamaican...we're actually not sure which island my great grandpa is from (he died relatively young) but we think it was antigua. and about your post before, i totally agree. i've had phone convos with people only for them to meet me and be sorta surprised i'm black. they don't say it but you can see it in their eyes when they first meet you.

but i pretty much think i'm american...i just hate being called african american because of my skin because technically i'm west indian and german (american ;) ). some italian people get offended if they get called hispanics so why can't people make the effort to either just call me black or ask what kind of black i am?

Lord Nelson
Aug 26th, 2006, 09:45 PM
Let me get this right, is it ok for a white person to wish to get darker such as getting a tan but is not ok for a meztizo person to want to be lighter? Why should these 2 examples be treated differently? I am brown skinned and to me there is nothing wrong as long as it is done naturally. Geting a tan from the sun is natural but not from ultral light machines. So the ultra tanned people who get it from the machines I treat with scorn just like the Michael Jackson people wh artificially get their skin lightened. But those who want to be lighter or darker without doing anything unless as I said it is natural or just talk I have no problem with and it is not racist at all.

Apoleb
Aug 26th, 2006, 09:51 PM
i asked my coworker, who is my age, to tell me about her growing up. her family is from peru and she was born in peru. she moved to the states when she was seven and told me that she lived in a suburb of los angeles. she said that she has been exposed to all types of races and cultures but that she grew up mostly around white people. i then asked her how come she got upset when she was mistaken for an arab yesterday and she said a couple of things that kind of bothered me. she said that since 9/11 she has only been exposed to negative news and media regarding arab people and people from the middle east and she also said that she didn't think they were attractive people as a race and that it got her mad when she was mistaken for one. she also told me that when she was little she looked white but as she started to grown up she got more and more tan until she had light brown skin and that she wishes she were more white. i actually think she is a bit racist mixed in with the way she was brought up. all this happened during our lunch break.

:lol:

Yes, your co-worker sees Arabs (as a race) inferior and has inferiority complexes of her own. I'll leave other people to judge if this person is "racist" or not. :)

Just a side note (since most Westerners are totally oblivious on this issue), the Arab world is an extremely diverse area, and commonly called "Arab" people do not share similar looks and they do not even have the same cultures. There are some cultural similarities, but there are also extreme variety.

butch
Aug 27th, 2006, 01:22 AM
I went to Dubai this year and during the Mauresmo-Nagyova match, the man sitting next to me asked me if I was from France because I was speaking in French (whatever little I do know!) and I replied I wasn't so he said "Ahh, you must be Algerian." and I was like no, I'm Pakistani at which point he told me I didn't look like one or speak like one. I just did an "umm...okay." He was Czech, btw. ;)

:lol:

rated_next
Aug 27th, 2006, 01:25 AM
I'm Hispanic and people think I'm Persian all the time.