Discussion:
Freedom
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David Kleinecke
2017-07-29 17:22:52 UTC
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I just said to a woman wondering what she should do:

Do what you want. You're free, white and twenty-one.

Is that expression still PC?
Dr. Jai Maharaj
2017-07-29 18:04:45 UTC
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In alt.usage.english, in article
Post by David Kleinecke
Do what you want. You're free, white and twenty-one.
Is that expression still PC?
Political correctness is dead. It is sufficient to try to
be simply correct.

Jai Maharaj, Jyotishi
Om Shanti

http://bit.do/jaimaharaj
Jerry Friedman
2017-07-29 18:44:59 UTC
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Post by David Kleinecke
Do what you want. You're free, white and twenty-one.
Is that expression still PC?
I think it would startle a lot of people and make some uncomfortable.
--
Jerry Friedman
Harrison Hill
2017-07-29 20:04:02 UTC
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Post by David Kleinecke
Do what you want. You're free, white and twenty-one.
Is that expression still PC?
It is very difficult to advise a young person these days. Most
University Degrees (in the UK) leave you saddled with a huge
debt, and no guarantee that they will help you find any sort
of a job.

Your young lady needed to ask you that question when she was
9 or 10; and the answer might have been:

1) If you have a passion, follow that passion.
2) Otherwise learn maths. Maths is everything. You don't use
it, but it opens doors.

If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one",
I wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?

:)
Peter T. Daniels
2017-07-29 20:50:21 UTC
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Post by Harrison Hill
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one",
I wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.

""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late friend Lorraine Hansberry."
(Wikip)

Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil Rights Era,
Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American (woman?) playwright to have
a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is
an image from the leading poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.

There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and one of her
albums is named for it.

So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Harrison Hill
2017-07-29 20:57:55 UTC
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Post by Peter T. Daniels
Post by Harrison Hill
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one",
I wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.
""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late friend Lorraine Hansberry."
(Wikip)
Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil Rights Era,
Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American (woman?) playwright to have
a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is
an image from the leading poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.
There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and one of her
albums is named for it.
So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Of course they do. So why does "You're free, white and twenty-one"
cause (imaginary) "offence"? Who is being offended? Why aren't
we allowed to say what other people are allowed to say?
Harrison Hill
2017-07-29 21:14:11 UTC
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Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Peter T. Daniels
Post by Harrison Hill
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one",
I wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.
""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late friend Lorraine Hansberry."
(Wikip)
Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil Rights Era,
Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American (woman?) playwright to have
a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is
an image from the leading poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.
There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and one of her
albums is named for it.
So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Of course they do. So why does "You're free, white and twenty-one"
cause (imaginary) "offence"? Who is being offended? Why aren't
we allowed to say what other people are allowed to say?
Apropos of nothing, it was the "Bob and Marcia" version that was the
UK hit, around about the "coffee coloured people by the score" period
of the 1970s. This problem drives educated ethnic-minority people
bonkers: people leaping at the chance to be "offended" on their behalf
- where no offence is intended and where no offence is taken.

"To Be Young, Gifted and Black is where it's at": pride and respect.
"To Be Young, Gifted and White is where it's at": insult and bigotry?
Whiskers
2017-07-30 14:05:33 UTC
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Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Peter T. Daniels
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one", I
wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.
""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with
lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late
friend Lorraine Hansberry." (Wikip)
Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil
Rights Era, Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American
(woman?) playwright to have a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced
on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is an image from the leading
poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.
There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and
one of her albums is named for it.
So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Of course they do. So why does "You're free, white and twenty-one"
cause (imaginary) "offence"? Who is being offended? Why aren't we
allowed to say what other people are allowed to say?
Apropos of nothing, it was the "Bob and Marcia" version that was the
UK hit, around about the "coffee coloured people by the score" period
of the 1970s. This problem drives educated ethnic-minority people
bonkers: people leaping at the chance to be "offended" on their behalf
- where no offence is intended and where no offence is taken.
"To Be Young, Gifted and Black is where it's at": pride and respect.
"To Be Young, Gifted and White is where it's at": insult and bigotry?
Times change. When Nina Simone wrote her song, racist speech was
commonplace and widely accepted - her song was indeed a response and
retaliation to it. Racism is less acceptable now - even if it is still
true that 'being white' (or 'not being black') confers some advantages.

So while it is true that your friend's being white won't harm her
prospects of advancement, it would probably be politic and tactful to
express this more circumspectly than as a slogan or motto. It certainly
isn't a birthright any more.

Your choice of the word 'free' is interesting. What prompted you to
mention it? Is 'not free' something that affects people in your culture
or circle of acquaintances? If so, in what ways?

Presumably, 21 is the age of majority where you are.
--
-- ^^^^^^^^^^
-- Whiskers
-- ~~~~~~~~~~
Peter T. Daniels
2017-07-30 14:25:54 UTC
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Post by Whiskers
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Peter T. Daniels
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one", I
wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.
""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with
lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late
friend Lorraine Hansberry." (Wikip)
Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil
Rights Era, Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American
(woman?) playwright to have a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced
on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is an image from the leading
poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.
There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and
one of her albums is named for it.
So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Of course they do. So why does "You're free, white and twenty-one"
cause (imaginary) "offence"? Who is being offended? Why aren't we
allowed to say what other people are allowed to say?
Apropos of nothing, it was the "Bob and Marcia" version that was the
UK hit, around about the "coffee coloured people by the score" period
of the 1970s. This problem drives educated ethnic-minority people
bonkers: people leaping at the chance to be "offended" on their behalf
- where no offence is intended and where no offence is taken.
"To Be Young, Gifted and Black is where it's at": pride and respect.
"To Be Young, Gifted and White is where it's at": insult and bigotry?
Times change. When Nina Simone wrote her song, racist speech was
commonplace and widely accepted - her song was indeed a response and
retaliation to it. Racism is less acceptable now - even if it is still
true that 'being white' (or 'not being black') confers some advantages.
So while it is true that your friend's being white won't harm her
prospects of advancement, it would probably be politic and tactful to
express this more circumspectly than as a slogan or motto. It certainly
isn't a birthright any more.
Your choice of the word 'free' is interesting. What prompted you to
mention it? Is 'not free' something that affects people in your culture
or circle of acquaintances? If so, in what ways?
Presumably, 21 is the age of majority where you are.
The slogan DK presented is age-old. Yes, 21 was the age of majority in the US.

It is HH who is being obtuse.
Cheryl
2017-07-30 15:34:00 UTC
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Post by Whiskers
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Peter T. Daniels
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one", I
wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.
""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with
lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late
friend Lorraine Hansberry." (Wikip)
Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil
Rights Era, Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American
(woman?) playwright to have a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced
on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is an image from the leading
poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.
There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and
one of her albums is named for it.
So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Of course they do. So why does "You're free, white and twenty-one"
cause (imaginary) "offence"? Who is being offended? Why aren't we
allowed to say what other people are allowed to say?
Apropos of nothing, it was the "Bob and Marcia" version that was the
UK hit, around about the "coffee coloured people by the score" period
of the 1970s. This problem drives educated ethnic-minority people
bonkers: people leaping at the chance to be "offended" on their behalf
- where no offence is intended and where no offence is taken.
"To Be Young, Gifted and Black is where it's at": pride and respect.
"To Be Young, Gifted and White is where it's at": insult and bigotry?
Times change. When Nina Simone wrote her song, racist speech was
commonplace and widely accepted - her song was indeed a response and
retaliation to it. Racism is less acceptable now - even if it is still
true that 'being white' (or 'not being black') confers some advantages.
So while it is true that your friend's being white won't harm her
prospects of advancement, it would probably be politic and tactful to
express this more circumspectly than as a slogan or motto. It certainly
isn't a birthright any more.
Your choice of the word 'free' is interesting. What prompted you to
mention it? Is 'not free' something that affects people in your culture
or circle of acquaintances? If so, in what ways?
Presumably, 21 is the age of majority where you are.
I always assumed "free" in the context of the saying was connected to
the age of majority - free of parental control and not yet tied up with
one's own family responsibilities. I eventually figured out "white"
might be connected to black slavery - I knew of slavery, of course, and
knew that in the past in the US it had been race-based, but didn't
immediately connect that to "free".
--
Cheryl
Tony Cooper
2017-07-30 16:06:18 UTC
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Post by Cheryl
Post by Whiskers
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Peter T. Daniels
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one", I
wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.
""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with
lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late
friend Lorraine Hansberry." (Wikip)
Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil
Rights Era, Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American
(woman?) playwright to have a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced
on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is an image from the leading
poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.
There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and
one of her albums is named for it.
So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Of course they do. So why does "You're free, white and twenty-one"
cause (imaginary) "offence"? Who is being offended? Why aren't we
allowed to say what other people are allowed to say?
Apropos of nothing, it was the "Bob and Marcia" version that was the
UK hit, around about the "coffee coloured people by the score" period
of the 1970s. This problem drives educated ethnic-minority people
bonkers: people leaping at the chance to be "offended" on their behalf
- where no offence is intended and where no offence is taken.
"To Be Young, Gifted and Black is where it's at": pride and respect.
"To Be Young, Gifted and White is where it's at": insult and bigotry?
Times change. When Nina Simone wrote her song, racist speech was
commonplace and widely accepted - her song was indeed a response and
retaliation to it. Racism is less acceptable now - even if it is still
true that 'being white' (or 'not being black') confers some advantages.
So while it is true that your friend's being white won't harm her
prospects of advancement, it would probably be politic and tactful to
express this more circumspectly than as a slogan or motto. It certainly
isn't a birthright any more.
Your choice of the word 'free' is interesting. What prompted you to
mention it? Is 'not free' something that affects people in your culture
or circle of acquaintances? If so, in what ways?
Presumably, 21 is the age of majority where you are.
I always assumed "free" in the context of the saying was connected to
the age of majority - free of parental control and not yet tied up with
one's own family responsibilities. I eventually figured out "white"
might be connected to black slavery - I knew of slavery, of course, and
knew that in the past in the US it had been race-based, but didn't
immediately connect that to "free".
As I said in another post, it's an allusion to restrictions. "Free"
as opposed to a slave who is restricted to obeying his master, "White"
as opposed to "Negro" who is restricted from using some water
fountains or bathrooms, and "21" as opposed to being under-21 and
restricted from buying alcohol or from voting. (Restrictions that may
no linger exist, but did exist when the saying came to be.)

The person who is "free, white, and 21" is under no restrictions and
can make their own decisions.
--
Tony Cooper - Orlando, Florida
Cheryl
2017-07-30 16:16:32 UTC
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Post by Tony Cooper
Post by Cheryl
Post by Whiskers
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Peter T. Daniels
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one", I
wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.
""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with
lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late
friend Lorraine Hansberry." (Wikip)
Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil
Rights Era, Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American
(woman?) playwright to have a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced
on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is an image from the leading
poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.
There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and
one of her albums is named for it.
So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Of course they do. So why does "You're free, white and twenty-one"
cause (imaginary) "offence"? Who is being offended? Why aren't we
allowed to say what other people are allowed to say?
Apropos of nothing, it was the "Bob and Marcia" version that was the
UK hit, around about the "coffee coloured people by the score" period
of the 1970s. This problem drives educated ethnic-minority people
bonkers: people leaping at the chance to be "offended" on their behalf
- where no offence is intended and where no offence is taken.
"To Be Young, Gifted and Black is where it's at": pride and respect.
"To Be Young, Gifted and White is where it's at": insult and bigotry?
Times change. When Nina Simone wrote her song, racist speech was
commonplace and widely accepted - her song was indeed a response and
retaliation to it. Racism is less acceptable now - even if it is still
true that 'being white' (or 'not being black') confers some advantages.
So while it is true that your friend's being white won't harm her
prospects of advancement, it would probably be politic and tactful to
express this more circumspectly than as a slogan or motto. It certainly
isn't a birthright any more.
Your choice of the word 'free' is interesting. What prompted you to
mention it? Is 'not free' something that affects people in your culture
or circle of acquaintances? If so, in what ways?
Presumably, 21 is the age of majority where you are.
I always assumed "free" in the context of the saying was connected to
the age of majority - free of parental control and not yet tied up with
one's own family responsibilities. I eventually figured out "white"
might be connected to black slavery - I knew of slavery, of course, and
knew that in the past in the US it had been race-based, but didn't
immediately connect that to "free".
As I said in another post, it's an allusion to restrictions. "Free"
as opposed to a slave who is restricted to obeying his master, "White"
as opposed to "Negro" who is restricted from using some water
fountains or bathrooms, and "21" as opposed to being under-21 and
restricted from buying alcohol or from voting. (Restrictions that may
no linger exist, but did exist when the saying came to be.)
The person who is "free, white, and 21" is under no restrictions and
can make their own decisions.
I'm pointing out that in a different context, a slightly different
interpretation was made.

I suppose it could be considered an unexpected effect of cultural
diffusion, if I wanted to be formal about it.
--
Cheryl
Tony Cooper
2017-07-30 15:45:07 UTC
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On Sun, 30 Jul 2017 15:05:33 +0100, Whiskers
Post by Whiskers
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Peter T. Daniels
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one", I
wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.
""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with
lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late
friend Lorraine Hansberry." (Wikip)
Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil
Rights Era, Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American
(woman?) playwright to have a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced
on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is an image from the leading
poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.
There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and
one of her albums is named for it.
So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Of course they do. So why does "You're free, white and twenty-one"
cause (imaginary) "offence"? Who is being offended? Why aren't we
allowed to say what other people are allowed to say?
Apropos of nothing, it was the "Bob and Marcia" version that was the
UK hit, around about the "coffee coloured people by the score" period
of the 1970s. This problem drives educated ethnic-minority people
bonkers: people leaping at the chance to be "offended" on their behalf
- where no offence is intended and where no offence is taken.
"To Be Young, Gifted and Black is where it's at": pride and respect.
"To Be Young, Gifted and White is where it's at": insult and bigotry?
Times change. When Nina Simone wrote her song, racist speech was
commonplace and widely accepted - her song was indeed a response and
retaliation to it. Racism is less acceptable now - even if it is still
true that 'being white' (or 'not being black') confers some advantages.
So while it is true that your friend's being white won't harm her
prospects of advancement, it would probably be politic and tactful to
express this more circumspectly than as a slogan or motto. It certainly
isn't a birthright any more.
Your choice of the word 'free' is interesting. What prompted you to
mention it? Is 'not free' something that affects people in your culture
or circle of acquaintances? If so, in what ways?
It's a set piece. "Free, white, and 21" is the phrase.
Post by Whiskers
Presumably, 21 is the age of majority where you are.
It's not about "advancement", by the way. It's a phrase that is
intended to mean "You can make your own decisions". All of the
conditions (not free, not white, not 21) implied restrictions on a
person from doing what they want.

When it was used, it was used when someone asked if they could do
something and the reply was to indicate that they could do it if they
wanted to. For example, the question "Do you think I should grow a
beard?" might elicit that as a response.
--
Tony Cooper - Orlando, Florida
HVS
2017-07-30 16:13:39 UTC
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Post by Tony Cooper
On Sun, 30 Jul 2017 15:05:33 +0100, Whiskers
-snip-
Post by Tony Cooper
It's a set piece. "Free, white, and 21" is the phrase.
Post by Whiskers
Presumably, 21 is the age of majority where you are.
It's not about "advancement", by the way. It's a phrase that is
intended to mean "You can make your own decisions". All of the
conditions (not free, not white, not 21) implied restrictions on a
person from doing what they want.
When it was used, it was used when someone asked if they could do
something and the reply was to indicate that they could do it if they
wanted to. For example, the question "Do you think I should grow a
beard?" might elicit that as a response.
It's clear what it means - and I'm sure that it wasn't consciously intended
to be racist - but I can't say I recall coming across the phrase, and so
don't think its loss is a matter of shirt-rending regret.

I can only assume that when and where I grew up (teen years in the 1960s,
government city), it had been retired in anything approaching "marginally-
enlightened" circles. And anyway, there are sufficient set-phrase
responses which mean the same thing without inadvertently causing offence.

(The one which comes to mind is "I wouldn't presume to live your life for
you...", but I'm sure any of the regulars here could come up with other
substitutes.)
--
Cheers, Harvey
CanEng (30yrs) and BrEng (34yrs), indiscriminately mixed
CDB
2017-07-29 23:13:12 UTC
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Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Peter T. Daniels
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one", I
wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.
""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with
lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late
friend Lorraine Hansberry." (Wikip)
Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil
Rights Era, Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American
(woman?) playwright to have a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced
on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is an image from the leading
poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.
There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and
one of her albums is named for it.
So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Of course they do. So why does "You're free, white and twenty-one"
cause (imaginary) "offence"? Who is being offended? Why aren't we
allowed to say what other people are allowed to say?
1) You have control of your life because you do not suffer from three
great social disablers: you are not a slave; you are not Black; you are
not a minor.

2) You have three advantages: you come fresh to life; you are talented;
you have an understanding of life that the speaker approves of and
sympathises with, that is closed to White people.

Maybe some people don't like what (1) reminds them of.
Harrison Hill
2017-07-29 23:59:53 UTC
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Post by CDB
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Peter T. Daniels
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one", I
wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.
""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with
lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late
friend Lorraine Hansberry." (Wikip)
Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil
Rights Era, Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American
(woman?) playwright to have a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced
on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is an image from the leading
poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.
There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and
one of her albums is named for it.
So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Of course they do. So why does "You're free, white and twenty-one"
cause (imaginary) "offence"? Who is being offended? Why aren't we
allowed to say what other people are allowed to say?
1) You have control of your life because you do not suffer from three
great social disablers: you are not a slave; you are not Black; you are
not a minor.
2) You have three advantages: you come fresh to life; you are talented;
you have an understanding of life that the speaker approves of and
sympathises with, that is closed to White people.
Maybe some people don't like what (1) reminds them of.
I'm sure you are right. The most neglected class in Britain,
however, is white working-class people. They are neglected and
discriminated against. They have no future outcome to look
forward to, and the "drive", that drove my family out of
poverty, is no help to them. What job can they do that can't
be done better or cheaper by an Latvian, Estonian, or a Pole?

(I live in a Tamil Sri-Lankan area, and they choose corner-
shops in which to flourish) :)
David Kleinecke
2017-07-30 01:23:26 UTC
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Post by Harrison Hill
Post by CDB
Post by Harrison Hill
Post by Peter T. Daniels
If people quibble over "You're free, white and twenty-one", I
wonder what they would say about "Young, gifted and black"?
:)
The latter is a phrase devised by an African American poet.
""To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone with
lyrics by Weldon Irvine. It was written in memory of Simone's late
friend Lorraine Hansberry." (Wikip)
Nina Simone was one of the greatest activist-artists of the Civil
Rights Era, Lorraine Hansberry was the first African American
(woman?) playwright to have a play (*A Raisin in the Sun*) produced
on Broadway. "A raisin in the sun" is an image from the leading
poet of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes.
There's a celebrated recording of the song by Aretha Franklin, and
one of her albums is named for it.
So the answer to your wondering is, they embrace it.
Of course they do. So why does "You're free, white and twenty-one"
cause (imaginary) "offence"? Who is being offended? Why aren't we
allowed to say what other people are allowed to say?
1) You have control of your life because you do not suffer from three
great social disablers: you are not a slave; you are not Black; you are
not a minor.
2) You have three advantages: you come fresh to life; you are talented;
you have an understanding of life that the speaker approves of and
sympathises with, that is closed to White people.
Maybe some people don't like what (1) reminds them of.
I'm sure you are right. The most neglected class in Britain,
however, is white working-class people. They are neglected and
discriminated against. They have no future outcome to look
forward to, and the "drive", that drove my family out of
poverty, is no help to them. What job can they do that can't
be done better or cheaper by an Latvian, Estonian, or a Pole?
(I live in a Tamil Sri-Lankan area, and they choose corner-
shops in which to flourish) :)
Eastern Europeans really do better work than old-blood English?
In that case the OBE deserve no sympathy. If they do work more
cheaply the UK needs better unions and/or minimum wage laws. Get
the immigrant pay up to OBE levels.
Peter T. Daniels
2017-07-29 20:05:36 UTC
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Post by David Kleinecke
Do what you want. You're free, white and twenty-one.
Is that expression still PC?
It never was.
David Kleinecke
2017-07-29 22:22:02 UTC
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Post by Peter T. Daniels
Post by David Kleinecke
Do what you want. You're free, white and twenty-one.
Is that expression still PC?
It never was.
It was a meme of my long ago youth. Before PC was invented.
HVS
2017-07-29 20:10:25 UTC
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On Sat, 29 Jul 2017 10:22:52 -0700 (PDT), David Kleinecke
Post by David Kleinecke
Do what you want. You're free, white and twenty-one.
Is that expression still PC?
I vote for "no".

(If I'd been party to the conversation, there would have been an
embarrassed and awkward silence after you'd said it.)
--
Cheers, Harvey
CanE (30 years) & BrE (34 years),
indiscriminately mixed
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