7/11/2008

Is the term 'Black Hole' Racist?

This news story at Fox News would be pretty funny if it weren't so sad:

DALLAS — What do "black hole," "angel food cake," and "devil's food cake" have in common?

They're all racist terms, says a Dallas County, Texas, official.

A county commissioners' meeting this week over traffic tickets turned into a tense discussion over race when one commissioner said the county's collections office was like a certain astronomical phenomenon.

"It sounds like Central Collections has become a black hole," Commissioner Kenneth Mayfield, who is white, said during the Monday meeting.

One black official demanded an apology, and Commissioner John Wiley Price, who also is black, said that type of language is unacceptable.

At the meeting, Mayfield said he intended his comments to be taken in the context of the scientific meaning, and became upset that he was being misunderstood.

In astronomy, the term black hole refers to a star that has collapsed upon itself, creating something so dense and small that it does not have any physical properties besides a gravitational force so great that even light cannot escape its pull.

Later, Price told MyFOXdfw.com that he believed it and other terms were racist.

"So if it's 'angel food cake,' it's white. If it's 'devil's food cake,' it's black. If you're the 'black sheep of the family,' then you gotta be bad, you know. 'White sheep,' you're okay. You know?" Price said. . . .


Thanks to Bob Aldridge for sending me this link.

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4 Comments:

Anonymous Rick M said...

If you're the 'black sheep of the family,' then you gotta be bad, you know. 'White sheep,' you're okay. You know?"

I almost don't know where to begin but I think I'll start with the above quoted idiocy. The term black sheep refers to actual sheep and is not a metaphor for people. The problem with black wool is that it cannot be dyed unlike white wool and so can only ever be black, the wool is therefore worth less at market because of this.
When accusations like this are made it only ever harms legitimate complaints of racism, as you say John it'd be funny if it weren't so sad.

7/11/2008 9:58 AM  
Blogger TYF said...

I seem to remember, several years back, Illinois State Senator Pate Philip made a comment to the effect that increasing spending on the Chicago Public Schools was "throwing money down a black hole." Caused an enormous uproar from the usual suspects, but Philip had a pretty safe suburban seat.

7/11/2008 12:38 PM  
Blogger DJK said...

This is insane.

7/11/2008 5:07 PM  
Anonymous Harry Schell said...

AS a resident of Dallas for 14 years, I can speak to John Wiley Price.

He is so racially-sensitive that a comment about black leather shoes could somehow be found racist in his mind.

Tantrums and buffoonery about imaginary insults to "blackness" were common while I was there.

This is just par for his course. Um, I think he flunked science, too...maybe a genuine confusion by the poor sod.

7/11/2008 5:37 PM  

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