Earlier this afternoon I tweeted about a Facebook post made by George Takei. Please retweet it when you get the chance.
— Jeff Quinton (@JeffQuinton) April 25, 2016
Specifically, here’s just the graphic he posted on Facebook this afternoon:
The use of the term “gypped” is a slur against people of Romani origin, who are often called Gypsies. AP Style says the terms Gypsies and Roma be used to interchangeably to describe the ethnic groups.
You would think Takei would know better, but there appears to be a lot of ignorance and indifference about the usage of the term. If the Roma were a bigger ethnic group in the US, maybe there would be more awareness of the issue.
Takei is usually a pretty consistent advocate on issues of equality, whether it be because of his own captivity in a Japanese interment camp in the U.S. during World War II or his activism for gay “marriage.”
In fact, Takei changed it to the text below (an even worse pun) without updating the status itself to indicate it was changed. Instead he made a comment pleading ignorance buried in the thread on the status saying: “Oh myyy, that was not something I was aware of. Thanks for pointing it out. I certainly will keep it in mind.”
Generally the rule with blogs, newspaper articles, and social media is that you put any apologies and what was updated in the original post or status itself. Only if you’re trying to hide it do you react like George Takei did.
George Takei’s Past Use of Racial Slurs
Takei’s strident activism on the same-sex “marriage” issue is what got him in trouble before.
Here’s a report in The Hill from July 2, 2015:
Actor and gay rights advocate George Takei is slamming Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas after his dissent to last week’s decision legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide claimed that the government can neither give nor take away human dignity.
“He is a clown in blackface sitting on the Supreme Court. He gets me that angry,” the former “Star Trek” star said in an interview with Fox 10 this week in Phoenix, standing alongside his longtime partner and husband.
That same day The Federalist reported on Takei doubling down on his remarks and saying they weren’t racist. In his explanation, he compared Thomas to a black buffoon and said he was a traitor to his race.
Takei later apologized publicly for the original remarks.
What do you think? Do you really think George Takei was ignorant of “gypped” being a slur? Do you find it hard to believe in light of his previous comments Clarence Thomas?