Originally Posted by LionTigerBear
Certain compliments are okay if they are made in a respectful way. Commenting on personal attributes which differentiate someone from the general population (almond eyes, different color skin, natural curls, freckles, long legs, etc.) is always very rude, however. The only kind of acceptable compliment would be very general, such as "lovely smile" (everyone has a smile) or something about how they styled themselves (such as, "I love how you did your hair today"). Even these acceptable compliments are considered very familiar and to comment like this to someone you don't know is certainly very forward and implies condescension (as though to a child).
But really, when you know someone personally, you get a feel for what's acceptable. And since you'd never normally go up to a stranger and comment on her hair or whatever, this just is not an ISSUE, you know?
I don't see why white people feel the need to comment on my appearance. I've NEVER had ANYONE come up and comment on my straight teeth, the straightness of my hair, or anything. Well, once someone involved in direct marketing told me I looked "put together" and would I like to join her company
But lots of people comment on ethnic features. So please let's not pretend that somehow this is not an ethnic / racial issue. Come on.
|I agree with SilverWillow in the x-post about the "well, what CAN I say to a person of color then?!" attitude...  We're not talking about eliminating a significant portion of your vocabulary. You're not going to have to walk around with a list, or struggle to find words to say.
The "what CAN I say" reminds me of my father and how he reacts to conversations like this...when I pointed out that "jewed" was not a good way to say "bargained," he threw up his hands and acted as if I was trying to take away 20% of the English language. Please. You can find plenty of words to describe what you want to say without resorting to a stereotype. You just don't want to.
I agree. I mean, since I've NEVER heard people outside of our family make comments on my mom's white appearance, why is it so freaking hard not to talk about my non-white appearance? Seriously. Is it so hard not to talk about the color of people's skin, the shape of their eyes?
What about, "So, what do you do?"
"Do you come here often?"
Sorry if someone feels that ancestral physical attributes are just too fascinating to ignore, but my suggestion is to just get over it.
NB I remember the first time I heard "jewed". I was SHOCKED. I was like, "as in, a Jew? As in, a Jew cheats you???" I was a teenager. The guy who said it was all, "Gee, I didn't even think about it. So what, I can only say "gypped"?"
: ARRRGGGHHHHH. Would be funny if not so utterly offensive. Sorry to those who feel they need to use these terms when talking about scams, but...