Saturday, February 18, 2012

Are We Way Too Sensitive Here?

Before I write what I am going to write, it is very important to consult a dictionary for the meaning of the following word:


Here is the definition of the word courtesy of

a narrow opening; crack; fissure; slit
transitive verb close up the chinks in
2.Obsolete to form chinks in

1.a sharp, clinking sound, as of coins striking together
2.Slang coin or cash
intransitive verb, transitive verb
to make or cause to make a sharp, clinking sound

noun, adjective
Slang Chinese: a contemptuous or patronizing term no longer much used

OK, now that is the context.
Until this week and because I hardly follow the National Basketball Association, I had no idea about Jeremy Lin, a player for the New York Knicks.
There is a term that is now in use and it is Linsanity.
The Jeremy Lin story is a one of those stories that is a feel-good one in this age of, well people like Whitney Houston and her tragic, downhill spiral.
So as Mr. Lin is having the season of his life with the Knicks, like all good stories there are bumps in the road.
And last night was no different.
After winning seven games in a row with Mr. Lin being a huge catalyst in the wins, last night the Knicks lost to the New Orleans Hornets, 89-85.
So on the ESPN website, this was the following headline:

Chink in the armor

Oh, my bad!
One thing that I forgot to mention is that Mr. Lin is Chinese-American.
Mr. Lin was born in the United States but his family emigrated from the Republic of China on Taiwan.
Mr. Lin is the first American-born Asian-American to play in the NBA.
And if you look at the definition of the word chink, you find this at the bottom of what I took from the website:

noun, adjective
Slang Chinese: a contemptuous or patronizing term no longer much used

So the immediate reaction is one of horror. How dare a headline writer use the term chink in reference to the Knicks losing a game. And we all know that it is intentionally used because it is a racial slur.
One of the many definitions is that it is a crack, a fissure.
And that is what happened last night at Madison Square Garden.
I do not believe that the headline writer even thought of it in reference to the fact that Mr. Lin is Chinese-American and that it is a racial slur.
The headline is something that I have and will continue to say. Because the correct usage is not a racial slur.
Yet at this link the writer refers to the headline as a "shockingly racist headline".
Well, ESPN sure did not take long to replace the headline.
My question is why did they replace the headline?
Since it is obvious that the headline writer meant nothing racist in the headline, it should have been left alone.
But in this age of every little term, phrase, word being offensive to some one or some group, it went out into the ether of cyberspace apparently as quickly as it showed up.
Had the headline writer and or the writer used the word chink before the name of Mr. Lin, then it would be not only shocking and racist but insipid on the part of the headline writer and the writer.
But it is only the headline.
And thus I take it on face value that it was in no way meant to denigrate in any way Mr. Lin.
Does this mean now one should not use the word chink in any reference? Because we all know that is a shockingly racist term. Only. Pay no attention to the actual definitions of the word. Only the reference to Chinese.
It is a hyper case of over-sensitivity on the part of the leftywhore media.
Chink is a legitimate word and in context was totally legitimate in reference to what happened.
In fact if you read my link about Mr. Lin over at Wikipedia, note this about his personal life:

Lin considers himself a basketball player more than just an Asian American. He understands that there have not been many Asians in the NBA. "Maybe I can help break the stereotype," said Lin."I feel like Asians in general don't get the respect that we may deserve whether it comes to sports, basketball, or whatever it might be."

I highlight that he considers himself a basketball player first over being Asian-American. And he recognizes his role as a first in a rather humble way.
And that might be because of this other bit of info on Mr. Lin:

Lin is an evangelical Christian who was a leader in Harvard's Asian American Christian Fellowship during his time there. Lin would one day like to be a pastor who can head up non-profit organizations, either home or abroad. He has also talked of working in inner-city communities to help with underprivileged children.

Well, that maybe OK to insult. You know, if you are a Christian, it is cool to maybe offend because, well we all know that they are nuts, right?!
Really this whole story reeks of the long arm of political correctness. That it is so pervasive in our nation that we can not even use legitimate words in describing a team effort in losing a game. It was not Jeremy Lin, Chinese-American, that lost the game but the New York Knicks basketball team.
The chink in the armor is that of the word police rum amok.

1 comment:

ebbelard said...

Why, of course, I should have imagined your entire point would come to this being "a hyper case of over-sensitivity on the part of the leftywhore media". But at the same time, I cannot imagine you being naive enough to believe what you write, other than to make this point of the "leftywhore media" jumping at every opportunity to call someone a racist.

You said you don't follow basketball. I actually do. And I can tell you exactly how many headlines I have read that used the expression "Chink in the armor". I can assure you that 100% of them come from ESPN and refer to Jeremy Lin. (You can probably do a quick search through sports websites to check this for yourself)

Maybe it is not a case of us being "too sensitive" but rather you being rather "too apologetic"