Tag Archives: Indian

Is The Word “Indian” Offensive?

The Canadian newspaper, the Toronto Star, is engaged in a dispute with members of the Native Earth Performing Arts, a theater company, over its use of the word “Indian.” The group regards the use of this expression as an insult in describing or identifying the lives of many people who live in Canada. “To use the term, ‘Indian,’ when referring to Aboriginal people is considered derogatory,” according to the organization. A member of the organization said the Star’s policy was as “educated as Christopher Columbus was an expert navigator.” The newspaper’s view is that while the word is objectionable to many people, it still has meaning under Canada’s Constitution and there is still the “Indian Act” which is on the books.

The word is also greatly debated in the United States where its opponents prefer the expression ‘Native American.” Actually, the people being discussed are no more “aboriginals” or Native Americans than Indians. Their real names are Algonquin or in the United States, Iroquois or Delaware or Apache or Sioux and so on. I am always fascinated how individuals in the Untied States become infuriated at the word “Indian”and insist it should be “Native America.” The word “American” comes from Amerigo Vespucci, an Italian. I would find the word “aboriginal” to be an insult. People who lived in the western hemisphere had names. If we Americans want to be called “American” it just goes to prove we are all Italians under the sun.

P.S. A member of the theater group said the Star was “as educated as Christopher Columbus was as an expert navigator.” I would invite that person to sail four times across the Atlantic Ocean in boats that were as big as the size of a tennis court and only have two accidents. Columbus was a brilliant navigator regardless of whether or not anyone likes or does not like what he did. Oh, one of the accidents occurred while he was asleep on Christmas Eve, 1492.

Malaysian Politician Warns Chinese Not To Be Like Jews!

Malaysia’s governing coalition is in an uproar after a Malaysian political leader warned the Chinese minority not to emulate the behavior of Jews in America. Ahmad Ismail, told the Chinese minority in the nation: “I urge the Chinese not to become like the Jewish in America, where it is not enough that they control the economy, but they also want to dominate politics.” He added in threatening tones: “consider this a warning from the Malays. The patience of the Malays has a limit. Do not push us against the wall, for we will b e forced to turn back and push the Chinese for our own survival.” Gerakan, an ethnic Chinese-based party, has announced it was leaving the coalition government.

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawai is furious at the remarks which have fractured his coalition. He is engaged in a fierce fight over power with opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim and the last thing he needs is to create problems with the Chinese ethnic minority. Chinese and Indian minorities who constitute about 40% of the population are demanding greater access to power in government and the Malays are hesitant to give them much power.