Archiver > SOUTH-AFRICA > 2003-07 > 1059135073

From: Elizabeth Willoughby <>
Subject: Re: [ZA] Being PC in History??
Date: Fri, 25 Jul 2003 05:11:13 -0700 (PDT)
In-Reply-To: <>

It seems as if you refer to the word 'partner' as meaning a member of an unmarried couple. Is that the case in Australia? In the U.S., it usually insinuates a gay or lesbian couple. I suppose in the end, they are the same--an unmarried couple. Interesting....
In reference to the Kaffir string, there was an email that discussed labels that particular nationalities and groups have taken on over history, i.e., Negro, African-American, etc. In America, African-American is the correct term used in reference to black people--what are they using in other parts of the world, for example, England, or Australia? My brother in law is black but African-American doesn't seem to apply as he is a Canadian citizen living in the U.S. and his mother and father are Jamaican with strong Chinese roots. Ha! Now what box do you think he checks on the form?

Andrew Rodger <> wrote:
Hear, hear!

And this is not irrelevant to genealogy, as it affects, among other
things, the naming of children, inheritance laws (varying wildly from
one jurisdiction to another, even within the same nation where that
nation is a federation), and so on.

That said, however, in Scotland wives are always buried under their
maiden names, and very helpful that is, too (because in Scottish law a
woman retains her maiden name and the husband's surname is added as an
alternative, thus my wife would be Ann Louisa Beelders or Rodger) -- but
all the tombstones we examined in Scotland last year said she was the
"beloved wife", or the like, of the male person in the same grave. In
this country they are usually referred to as "de factos" if the
relationship is an established one, especially if there are children,
and one wonders why they don't just get on with it and marry --
especially as the Family Court takes an interest in the break-up of
these relationships exactly as in marriage, so it is only the Registry
processes that are avoided in the end.

Andrew in Australia, which is awash with "partners"

On Thursday, July 24, 2003, at 09:49 AM, Patricia Frykberg wrote:

> Yes...What about this awful word "partner" To me it immediately means
> the
> couple are not married. I am a wife and I have a husband.
> god forbid anyone would call us "partners".
> But several of my people were killed in those wars which I refer to as
> Frontier Wars and the books and references in the registers and
> contemporary
> letters refer to that K word. So it will be in my histories.
> Pat
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Terry Waters-Marsh"
> To:
> Sent: Thursday, 24 July 2003 08:43 AM
> Subject: RE: [ZA] Being PC in History??
>> G'day Mike,
>> I respect your right to express your convictions and I respect the
> arguments and perspective you are taking. You are correct in as much as
> the
> point about changing the truth creates a lie. However, I feel we also
> have
> an obligation to not cause offence to anyone on the basis of their race,
> colour, religion, physical appearance, gender, ethnic background, etc,
> etc.
> (Gandhi would have put that view far more succinctly than I have done
> so, I
> am sure!) To me, to continue to use a term that causes offence and/or
> hurt
> to some, would be hypocritical, especially when the term was not one
> used by
> the persons so labelled to describe themselves.
>> Ask a Hmong man if he wants to be called Laotian or Miao, ask whether
> Indians see the 1857 uprising as a mutiny or the first war of
> independence,
> whether Americans of African origin want to be called Negroes - the
> list of
> cases where others have created a label (sometimes an offensive one) to
> describe a people or event is almost endless. That it has become common
> usage may be true but, it is offensive nonetheless. It seemed to me,
> hence
> my search for the correct term, that the term Kaffir was/is/will be
> offensive to a group of my fellow human beings and therefore, for me
> and my
> conscience, I will call the wars the Bantu wars or the Frontier wars,
> never
> using the term Kaffir again. That will in no way "glorify" or
> "whitewash"
> the tragedy it was for all concerned at the time, nor is it a
> perversion of
> the truth of the event or the participants.
>> Have a great day!!
>> Warmest regards,
>> Terry Waters-Marsh Rockhampton Queensland 4701 Australia
>> FreeCEN Coordinator - Wiltshire (visit the project at
>> ARCHIVE CD BOOKS - A project to reproduce
> old books on CD for genealogists and pay for the restoration of books in
> Record Offices, Libraries, etc.
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Mike Wattrus #8 [mailto:]
>> Sent: Wednesday, July 23, 2003 4:01 PM
>> To:
>> Subject: [ZA] Being PC in History??
>> Hi List
>> I apologise for raising this nearly dead thread again but it is only
>> after
>> great circumspection, which is the cause of the delay, that I do
>> this. I
>> also do not wish to offend anyone and I would NOT do that purposefully.
>> However I do believe that we need to take a hard cold look at what we
>> are
>> doing, especially when we are trying to be politically correct
>> retrospectively.
>> Mahatma Ghandi is said to have stated the following. "A lie remains a
>> lie
> no
>> matter how often it is repeated, and the truth remains the truth even
>> if
> it
>> is never spoken". Astute and soul-searching words.
>> About 18 months ago I picked up a book in a well respected library that
> had
>> part of the title covered with a sticky label. If my memory serves me
>> correctly the title was "The (label) Wars". On opening the book it soon
>> became obvious that every where that the word "Kaffir" was printed,
> someone
>> had painstakingly covered this and had added a suitable alternative. I
>> chuckled with delight at the time thinking of the effort someone had
>> gone
> to
>> in order to achieve this magnificent whitewashing of historical fact.
>> However the 9th Kaffir War was called that by our ancestors and the
>> word
>> Kaffir was NEVER used in the sense of those "others" involved being
>> unbelievers or heathen. Horror of horrors, they actually used it in its
>> worst possible sense. BUT the question I am asking is "Do we now go
>> back
> in
>> time and change this?"
>> I believe that we should all be adult enough to accept that what was
>> said,
>> and done was wrong, but by whitewashing it now is going in later years
> make
>> the 9th Frontier War seem so much more gentlemanly and give the
>> illusion
> of
>> respectability and honour which it never had. Where are we going to
>> stop?
>> What about changing the word "Apartheid" and also perhaps "Nazi"? It
>> seems
>> impossible that 6 million Jews were murdered during WW2 so let us make
> that
>> more acceptable by making the figure 2 million! After all is said and
>> done
>> this was just collateral damage, wasn't it?
>> History I believe should be cast in stone so that no matter how much
>> later
>> people read it, they will be able to extract the uncoloured truth.
>> Maybe,
>> just maybe, one day the human race will actually learn something from
>> history and become a better and more peaceful species!
>> Once again I repeat I have no intention of offending anyone (dead,
>> alive
> or
>> unborn), but the moment the truth is altered in even the slightest
>> way, it
>> becomes a lie! There are no half-truths or white-lies, Just the truth
>> or a
>> lie! Would you have knowingly bought Pick 'n Pay's Sardines after you
> became
>> aware that they had been poisoned? The fact that the poison was so
>> diluted
>> that it would not have harmed a flea, would this have changed your
> resolve?
>> I suggest that we leave History untampered with, and leave behind facts
> not
>> illusions.
>> Best wishes
>> Mike
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