Saturday, February 18, 2012

ESPN, there's really no excuse for the "Chink in the Armor" headline

Following last night's game, ESPN ran the following headline: "Chink in the Armor?". We were not able to capture the screen but the link below is to a site that did.

http://blog.angryasianman.com/2012/02/chink-in-armor-really-espn.html

Here's another article on the issue. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/18/espn-racist-jeremy-lin-headline-mobile-apology_n_1286277.html

Your thoughts?

31 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. Haters gonna hate.

    Just like what Tommy Amakar (Lin's coach at Harvard) told him, people hurling ethnic slurs at him are only doing it because he is a real factor on the court; if not, they wouldn't care enough to even notice him.

    In NBA, I would guess it is more an issue of jealousy (sudden fame and $$$ it will bring to Lin), more than race, that might cause others to not publicly disparage Lin or his abilities.

    There was Forbes article about how Lin-sanity might add $150 million in revenue for Knicks and NBA, MSG stock has increased in market capitalization by $160 million or so in Lin era, and some other article estimated Lin could eventually reel in $14 - $15 million (per year?) in endorsement revenues down the road.

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    1. Apologies in advance to anyone of German descent if the linked video is viewed is offending in any way, but I thought the captioning on this YouTube video was hilarious:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPajD2fRQ_g&feature=channel

      http://forums.realgm.com/boards/viewtopic.php?f=24&t=1161823&sid=7fdf089a70caf911d8a0029b101c42c8

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  3. Wow, I thought it was a joke when HT, a fellow Blogger on this site pointed out. I'm glad other news sites are picking this up. "Someone is going to get buried for this..."

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/gregorymcneal/2012/02/18/espn-uses-chink-in-the-armor-line-twice-did-linsanity-just-go-racist/

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  4. The exchanges in the comments section of this article point out why the phrase is venomous rather than innocuous. I've posted a snippet here:

    "It's that Swastika Defense (as much as I hate to invoke Nazis per Godwin’s Law)

    Every year, there’s a story about a guy who tattoos himself in swastikas or likes to collect them and when he gets called on it he uses the “swastikas were originally used by ancient cultures as a sign of power or blessing, that’s why I like it and I’m not a Nazi.” And, technically, he is correct.

    But if you ask 100 random people what the swastika means to them, at least 99 of them will say the Nazis, end of story.

    Same thing applies to any usage of the word chink when referring to an Asian person. Your definition above is correct in a vacuum but once you apply it to an Asian person, the majority of people will find it offensive..."

    Sean Keeley - February 18, 2012

    TEXT

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    1. well you ask 100 cauasians 99/100 will think it's nazism. i'm asian and i know it's used in Buddhism and hindu religions and in asia. it's about educating ignorant people the symbol was taking by an evil man for his own use.

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  5. I thought he didn't have a Chinaman's Chance of playing in the NBA. Boy was I WONG!

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    1. if I was the administrator, I'd leave this comment up. Its just proof of what we knew all along.....

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  6. If someone called David Stern and the NBA, a "Monkey Business", would that be offensive ?

    True, Monkey business is a real term in the English language for a business that is disorganized or poorly run. But how would most people, especially African Americans feel about it ?

    I think people in America are sensitive enough to understand how someone else would interpret such a phrase.

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    1. Agree. Even if the words seem innocent to you, meaning is in the ear of the beholder.

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  7. not that big of deal. most people are unaware of how offensive a comment it is because they know next to nothing about the asian american experience.

    what offensive is how flat the knick's offense looked in the first quarter. btw, nba league pass is awesome.

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    1. you can't let the media take little shots of subtle racism no matter how many people may not know it may be. the whole asian penis stereotype is pretty much the same way. let the media use it in films, tv, news, etc. and then this stereotype is treated like its fact. then you have guys like witlock and maywhether and this espn writer thinks it's ok to take some racist jabs towards asians because some asians think "it's not a big deal."
      asians can't let this kind of stuff slide anymore.

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  8. just thought i'd share this if anyone hasn't seen it. David Letterman's Top 10 Worst Jeremy Lin Puns

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hCAHcfkD3j8

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  9. In NBA, I would guess it is more an issue of jealousy (sudden fame and $$$ it will bring to Lin), more than race, that might cause others to not publicly disparage Lin or his abilities.
    AMEN...
    HOWEVER, REGARDING RESPECT, EDUCATION, FAMILY, PEACE, UNITY, GOD, FRIENDS, STUDENTS, CHILDREN, EXAMPLE, LEADERSHIP, REGARD, IGNORANCE, JEALOUS ESPN WHITE NIGGAS OR WHITE NIGGERS, IT IS EQUIVALENT TO CALLING AND DISRESPECTING KOBE BRYANT AS BLACK MAMBA OR BLACK MAMA'S BOY OR NIGGER. PERIOD. RESPECT IS RESPECT. BOOK OF PROVERBS TEACHES WISDOM, RESPECT, FAMILY, UNITY, UNDERSTANDING, DISCRETION.

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  10. HOWEVER, REGARDING RESPECT, EDUCATION, FAMILY, PEACE, UNITY, GOD, FRIENDS, STUDENTS, CHILDREN, EXAMPLE, LEADERSHIP, REGARD, IGNORANCE, JEALOUS ESPN WHITE NIGGAS OR WHITE NIGGERS, IT IS EQUIVALENT TO CALLING AND DISRESPECTING KOBE BRYANT AS BLACK MAMBA OR BLACK MAMA'S BOY OR NIGGER. PERIOD. RESPECT IS RESPECT. BOOK OF PROVERBS TEACHES WISDOM, RESPECT, FAMILY, UNITY, UNDERSTANDING, DISCRETION.

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  11. ESPN are pretty stupid for letting this lame pun be used, obviously its goinf to make some people angry. After this loss though it looks like the Knicks might be on a slippery slope. They have some problems with their defence which they really need to nip in the bud if they want to contend.

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  12. Listen, "Chink In the armor" is a commonly used phrase. Did the ESPN headline or anchor intentionally use Chink to refer to Jeremy Lin. I haven't watched the video so I don't know. I am Chinese and I definitely know what Chink means when it comes to Chinese-Americans.

    On the other hand, I can understand why the headline was used (weakness in Jeremy's game, turnovers). Personally, it's not a super big deal to me. BUT, it is good that awareness is being made.

    Too often, little things against Asians go by without a bleep. Jeremy Lin has changed this quite a bit.

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    1. just want to point out some words in the English language were applied to minorities precisely because they have dual and derogatory meanings. Asians are called chinks because it has semblance of sound to "chinese" , and because chink also means a "weak point." So its the perfect excuse to use the word chink: someone can always argue the word already existed in the English language so it couldn't be racist.

      Think about "sinology"- the study of Chinese language/culture etc. Imagine if Chinese people called the study of western Europeans "sinology" : "sin" + "ogy", or "the study of sin." Coincidence ?

      Likewise, notice that "yellow" is a color. It also means "cowardly." "black" is a color. It also has the meaning of "evil." But go look up the word "white" in the dictionary and see if there are any dual negative connotations.

      This last observation was not entirely mine- check out the movie "X" by Spike Lee. I just realized the logic applied exactly to Asians also, "yellow" people.

      All these racist nuances are built right into the language we're using every day. "Shanghaied" is another one: "to be tricked." Go look in the Merriam Webster dictionary, its still there. Imagine if Asians called "to be tricked" something like "New Yorked." Imagine the outcry in America.

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    2. If you look at ESPN's front page headlines on any given day, they're usually clever puns. This was no accident -- it was pretty intentional in my opinion, and the people who were responsible for it at ESPN have already been appropriately dealt with. Case closed, I'm moving on w/ my life.

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    3. P.s. you should all check out how SNL dealt with it. Nailed the issue right on the head.

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/19/jeremy-lin-snl-racist-jokes-linsanity_n_1287649.html

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    4. The best way to understand the expression is by comparing the same expression in three different ways:

      1. "...chink in the armor"

      2. "chink" in the armor

      3. "CHINK in the armor"

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  13. In France, we have the same word " chintoque (chink)" In a French dictionnary, the word "Chintoque" is racist

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  14. It's good that ESPN is censoring itself.

    I also like how people are trashing Floyd Mayweather. Racists like him need to be publicly called out and Linbarrassed.

    I look forward to seeing Lin on GQ ads or doing bad acting in commercials or posing alongside sexy swimsuit models. I am the straightest of straight men, but I want to see Lin being objectified as a good clean Asian male sex symbol. I'm so sick and tired of Hollywood's anti Asian male stereotyping that people really do subliminally believe.

    I also don't want to hear any racist garbage if Lin dates and marries a (non)Asian. This is the 21st century and we all have the right to go with whoever we want.

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  15. http://espn.go.com/espn/story/_/id/7591778/espn-statement-offensive-jeremy-lin-comments

    ESPN has since dismissed the employee responsible for the headline and suspended the anchor who said it on air

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    1. Wow, somebody at ESPN is "edu-mah-kah-ted" in the etymological sciences. I think this is great sign and shows that some people in the media get "it".

      I don't think this issue is about being politically correct, rather this issue about justice and history of racism in this country.

      Think about it. Why do announcers keep saying he's "deceptive"? To moi, it's like saying white men can't jump or black players can't play quarterback. No?

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  16. Niggardly used to be common english. It is a real word meaning miserly. I can not use that word. I understand why.

    Negro is a real borrowed word from Spanish.... simply meaning the color black.... it also used to be how both white and colored americans commonly described blacks people and not necessarily as a derogative either.. I can not use that word. I understand why.

    If I understand why I can't ever use those words period. These ignorant asses shouldn't have a problem understanding that you can't use the word chink in relation to an East Asian person.

    Imagine someone saying about a black guy, "guy was beasting all over the place! We've got a silverback (gorilla) in the jungle gym here tonight folks." There would be hell to pay.

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    1. And you would have a whole let less people trying to justify that person calling a black player a gorilla. Even as a "compliment"

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    2. Luol Deng was "complimented" in the Duke newspaper years ago for having "Orangutan arms". You can imagine the fallout from that.

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  17. I am Chinese non-American but would like to see the sports world go beyond color, think beyond race, feel beyond faith and applaud for excellence beyond limits! Go Jeremy Go Kobe Go Tim Tebow Go higher further longer!

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