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Topic: Did someone say Redneck?, Be careful how you say it< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 09 2013, 1:02 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Retired RedDog's thread about the deputy that tattooed his daughter reminded me of this recent story.  

A local woman was transferred from her position with the local School Board for using the term "redneck" to describe her husband.  I guess it was among other things and it was used in the most insulting way.  I just can't see it being all that offensive but what do I know?

You might be a redneck if you get your wife fired for calling your husband a redneck!   :D



Redneck story


Former Duval County Public Schools spokeswoman Jill Johnson was transferred from her position after an African-American subordinate filed a complaint of workplace discrimination against her, according to district documents made public Friday.

The complaint includes claims that Johnson often used the term “redneck” to describe her husband, and it reveals an awkward conversation about Superintendent Nikolai Vitti’s wife, who is black.

But ultimately there was no evidence that Johnson discriminated against Kandra Albury, a supervisor in the communications department who Johnson said had performance issues, the report said. The district’s Office of Equity and Inclusion investigated the claim.

The office did find evidence “of the use of words that have racial connotation and of other conversations that are inappropriate for the workplace.”

Johnson said she is please the “investigation found no evidence to support discrimination.”

“I certainly apologize that I used a term that I did not realize could be deemed insensitive,” she said. “It wasn’t done in malice to my husband nor to the complainant.”

Albury said she was advised by her attorney not to speak on the matter. She would not provide her attorney’s name.

The report also concludes that Johnson exercised poor judgment and calls for her and the entire communications department to go through sensitivity training. Johnson was due to be promoted to the district’s chief of public relations and marketing, but it was announced last week she would be transferred to a position in human resources office because of the investigation.

Johnson will not be handling ethics issues in the office.

“My heart belongs to Duval County Public Schools in whatever role I play,” Johnson said. “I think that my 14 years of experience in the field of communications will really help HR. This is a really great opportunity to expand my knowledge and continue my work with Duval County Public Schools.”

Vitti said the decision was about what was best for the district.

“Although the term ‘redneck’ may not be insensitive to some, it is to others,” he said. “The term invokes historical perceptions of intolerance and therefore is inappropriate in the workplace and by the leader of a department, especially in communications. As we move forward as a district I didn’t feel Mrs. Johnson should continue to represent the entire school district as its spokesperson.”

Vitti praised Johnson’s work ethic and intelligence and said she will continue making valuable contributions to the district in her new role. He stressed that the reassignment was a lateral move and she will continue with her current $98,000 salary.

According to the district report, Johnson frequently used the word “redneck” to describe her husband. Albury told the district she believed the use of “redneck” was a way of saying a person is “not fond of people of color.”

Johnson disagreed, the report states, and the majority of her staff said Johnson treated them well and called the work environment highly effective. Three African-Americans and five whites worked for Johnson.

Two other African-American members of Johnson’s former office said they also heard Johnson use the term “redneck,” but did not find it offensive. One of those employees said “it’s just Jill,” and then went on to say Johnson often said things without thinking it could be seen as unprofessional.

The report also states that a conversation about Vitti’s wife took place during a staff meeting, with one white subordinate asking “is she all the way black?”

The employee purported to have made the comment, Kelly Bell, denies the claim. But at least one other staffer besides Albury confirms the statement. Bell did not return a call for comment.

Albury said Johnson made a comment about Vitti’s wife’s shoes during the same meeting: “She had on some heels that may fly in Miami, but they sure won’t work here in Jacksonville.” Johnson denies making the statement but acknowledges that such a comment was discussed in her office.

The superintendent said the claims about the conversation regarding wife played no role in his decision.

“You can’t be a public official and not expect people to talk about your wife or your family,” he said. “To me it’s irrelevant. It’s hearsay.”

Vitti said the sensitivity training should occur in a couple of weeks. He wants whoever is hired to be the chief of public relations and marketing to participate in the training and he expects someone to be hired within two weeks.


Read more at Jacksonville.com: http://jacksonville.com/news....QTvnh1G


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 09 2013, 1:51 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

PC gone amok.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 09 2013, 2:23 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Here are my hasty thoughts, don't hold me to them too strictly. But the problem is that "redneck" does refer to skin color.

Although we might not take that literally these days, it does have that origin. Historically, I think the word referred to white farmers. Working in the fields gave them a red neck where the sun shone down between their hats and shirts and gave them a bit of a sunburn, especially on the back of the neck.

At the time, farming did not require much formal education and the farmers were largely restricted to like-minded associations. Maybe a century ago the population was predominately rural. And rural folks were largely Caucasian (if not black, in the South). Those rural folks were largely descended from the Scots-Irish who first settled the country or at least from Northern European stock. And they were prone to noticeable, red sunburn. So "red-neck" tends to be associated also with the term W.A.S.P., or White-Anglo-Saxon-Protestant.

When the population was predominantly rural, farmers had excuse to consider themselves the backbone of America. They tended to be family-oriented, church-going, hard-working folks who prided themselves in self-sufficiency. You didn't have to have a college degree to work a farm. You just had to work hard — supposedly. And so many of them had a distrust of "educated folks," and immigrants — even rural immigrants — who did not share their values.

But the Industrial Revolution changed the face of America. Previous to the late 1800's, immigration was predominantly from Northern Europe. In the late 1800's immigration from Southern Europe increased. And the "rednecks" were confronted with cities harboring Jews and Catholics who did not entirely share the rural farmer ideals, religion, or lifestyle. What's worse may be that they were "citified." Their populations were largely restricted to the larger urban areas.

Or, they eventually settled farther West if they resorted to a rural lifestyle. So while Southern states retained their leaning toward W.A.S.P. ideals, newly settled states in the West may have been somewhat more friendly to Polish, Italian, and even Russian immigrants. I'm simplifying a long story, but Southern Europeans tend not have skin so prone to the reddish sunburn and for other reasons did not qualify as "rednecks."

From there, the story branches out into the emergence of the KKK etc. It was not just Blacks that that group did not tolerate. Jews and Catholics suffered at their hands also. And the KKK as well as other secret societies with similar ideals were given much of their strength by "rednecks," that is, rural white, Anglo-Saxon Protestants with little tolerance for newcomers that stepped out of line.

Obviously, it's too tempting to arrive at a stereotype, but we simply cannot legitimately group folks descended from Northern Europeans into such hasty simplifications. Much has changed today and there are open-minded people from all ethnic groups — just as there are undoubtedly prejudiced folks from the same ethnic groups.

Today, "redneck" may mean different things to different people. For some the term is fairly benign. For others, perhaps not. I just think of John Wayne and a few of his rowdy admirers. The problem remains that skin color is being associated with undesirable traits. After all, we don't generally call Native Americans "redskins," anymore.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 09 2013, 2:55 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Has anyone ever played that game where you have a group of people... You whisper something to one then have them pass it along whispering from one person to the next and then you see how the message has changed by the time it reaches the last person?  

RevoRunner's opening line is a perfect example of that.  It was NOT a deputy who tattooed his daughter.  The headline was 'Deputies: Dad tattoos "Daddy's Girl" on 14-year-old daughter.'  Yet someone is sure to read that it was a deputy who did it and take it as truth.  Just sayin...


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 09 2013, 2:58 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(retired reddog @ Feb. 09 2013, 11:55 am)
QUOTE
Has anyone ever played that game where you have a group of people... You whisper something to one then have them pass it along whispering from one person to the next and then you see how the message has changed by the time it reaches the last person?

The game is called 'telephone.'

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 09 2013, 5:09 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(retired reddog @ Feb. 09 2013, 2:55 pm)
QUOTE
Has anyone ever played that game where you have a group of people... You whisper something to one then have them pass it along whispering from one person to the next and then you see how the message has changed by the time it reaches the last person?  

RevoRunner's opening line is a perfect example of that.  It was NOT a deputy who tattooed his daughter.  The headline was 'Deputies: Dad tattoos "Daddy's Girl" on 14-year-old daughter.'  Yet someone is sure to read that it was a deputy who did it and take it as truth.  Just sayin...

I remember that game.  It was interesting to hear the end result.

I was being lazy about referencing your thread.  I'll try much harder next time.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 09 2013, 7:14 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(retired reddog @ Feb. 09 2013, 2:55 pm)
QUOTE
Has anyone ever played that game where you have a group of people... You whisper something to one then have them pass it along whispering from one person to the next and then you see how the message has changed by the time it reaches the last person?  

RevoRunner's opening line is a perfect example of that.  It was NOT a deputy who tattooed his daughter.  The headline was 'Deputies: Dad tattoos "Daddy's Girl" on 14-year-old daughter.'  Yet someone is sure to read that it was a deputy who did it and take it as truth.  Just sayin...

What? I didn't know it was a deputy that tattooed his girl.
:D

I've embraced the term redneck. Those that know me well know that I refer to myself as redneck.

I think that redneck is only meant as a bad thing when someone yells "F*****g Redneck!!!"


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 10 2013, 12:03 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(TravisNWood @ Feb. 09 2013, 2:23 pm)
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Here are my hasty thoughts, don't hold me to them too strictly. But the problem is that "redneck" does refer to skin color.

Although we might not take that literally these days, it does have that origin. Historically, I think the word referred to white farmers. Working in the fields gave them a red neck where the sun shone down between their hats and shirts and gave them a bit of a sunburn, especially on the back of the neck.

I read somewhere that the term originated with the Battle of Blair Mountain in WV. The union miners supposedly wore red bandannas around their necks. Don't hold me to it though.  :)

Wiki link.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Blair_Mountain
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 10 2013, 1:53 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(cgaphiker @ Feb. 09 2013, 10:03 pm)
QUOTE

(TravisNWood @ Feb. 09 2013, 2:23 pm)
QUOTE
Here are my hasty thoughts, don't hold me to them too strictly. But the problem is that "redneck" does refer to skin color.

Although we might not take that literally these days, it does have that origin. Historically, I think the word referred to white farmers. Working in the fields gave them a red neck where the sun shone down between their hats and shirts and gave them a bit of a sunburn, especially on the back of the neck.

I read somewhere that the term originated with the Battle of Blair Mountain in WV. The union miners supposedly wore red bandannas around their necks. Don't hold me to it though.  :)

Wiki link.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Blair_Mountain

Hmmm, I don't find that at your link, Cgap. But the date of the "Battle of Blair Mountain" is given as 1921. For comparison, the Online Etymology Dictionary, which traces the origins of words, shows that the word "redneck" was used several decades earlier in reference to Presbyterians "most likely from mule farmers' outdoors labor in the sun, wearing a shirt and straw hat, with the neck exposed."

I don't rely on Wikipedia for much of anything, but if you do, refer to the actual entry in Wikipedia for "redneck." The word appears at least by 1893. That is much earlier than the 1921 battle. The word's meaning is as I explained in my first post:
    "The term characterized farmers having a red neck caused by sunburn from hours working in the fields. A citation from 1893 provides a definition as 'poorer inhabitants of the rural districts...men who work in the field, as a matter of course, generally have their skin stained red and burnt by the sun, and especially is this true of the back of their necks'"
So I think I traced the word accurately in my first post.

Anyhow, I've used the word a few times in these forums to refer to folks for whom I could think of no better word.


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(TravisNWood @ Feb. 10 2013, 1:53 am)
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Anyhow, I've used the word a few times in these forums to refer to folks for whom I could think of no better word.

I'm sure that you have used redneck in a derogatory manner.

The wiki link was for a perspective of the Battle of Blair Mountain alone. I made no inference that the wiki link proved what I said that I had read "somewhere" about the term originating during the Blair Mountain Battle. Of course you found a reason to quibble with it, and if that is what floats your boat, have fun with belittling people that you look down upon. It seems that is what you do best on these forums.
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(cgaphiker @ Feb. 10 2013, 12:20 am)
QUOTE

(TravisNWood @ Feb. 10 2013, 1:53 am)
QUOTE
Anyhow, I've used the word a few times in these forums to refer to folks for whom I could think of no better word.

I'm sure that you have used redneck in a derogatory manner.

The wiki link was for a perspective of the Battle of Blair Mountain alone. I made no inference that the wiki link proved what I said that I had read "somewhere" about the term originating during the Blair Mountain Battle. Of course you found a reason to quibble with it, and if that is what floats your boat, have fun with belittling people that you look down upon. It seems that is what you do best on these forums.

Gosh, don't you think you are over-reacting a bit, Cgap? ??? Where have I belittled someone? ???


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(TravisNWood @ Feb. 09 2013, 1:23 pm)
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Today, "redneck" does mean different things to different people.

Fixed that for you.  At least, that's been my experience.  Rarely used in a positive, uplifting sense, but not always in an extremely degrading sense either.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 12 2013, 1:48 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

@hiking_tiger
This is what I actually wrote above:

(TravisNWood @ Feb. 09 2013, 12:23 pm)
QUOTE
. . . Today, "redneck" may mean different things to different people. For some the term is fairly benign. For others, perhaps not. . . .

So you paraphrased what I wrote. That's about all. No fixing was necessary. But thanks. It seems we pretty much agree. Not everyone considers the term derogatory. Some do.


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(TravisNWood @ Feb. 12 2013, 12:48 pm)
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@hiking_tiger
This is what I actually wrote above:

(TravisNWood @ Feb. 09 2013, 12:23 pm)
QUOTE
. . . Today, "redneck" may mean different things to different people. For some the term is fairly benign. For others, perhaps not. . . .

So you paraphrased what I wrote. That's about all. No fixing was necessary. But thanks. It seems we pretty much agree. Not everyone considers the term derogatory. Some do.

What I got from what you said was that there's not a hard definition.  I may use it mildly poking fun at another fellow and he takes it that way.  Another might use it in a harshly deragatory sense.  So, yeah, I guess I paraphrased.

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