GMA anchor Amy Robach used the phrase ‘colored people’ live on air

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The news about Zendaya’s casting as Mary-Jane Watson in the Spider-Man reboot was a big discussion on the morning shows on Monday. Good Morning America tried to do a segment on it, with George Stephanopoulos and Amy Robach leading the conversation. As you might expect, the conversation did not go well, because Robach couldn’t even go one minute without dropping the term “colored people.” In context, this was her question: “We all know Hollywood has received recent and quite a bit of criticism for casting white actors in what one might assume would be reserved for colored people, is this potentially the industry trying to right itself?” Here’s the clip:

I love George’s face when she says the bad phrase. He knows it immediately, can you see that? He looks down at his papers like “Oh sh-t, this woman just stepped in it.”

When Benedict Cumberbatch made the same mistake a few years back – using the term “colored actors” – there was an immediate backlash and Benedict ended up issuing a thorough apology for being an idiot. Using the term “colored [anything]” is pretty antiquated, and it surprises me that so many white people still do it so often. For me, it doesn’t rise to the level of a racial slur, but saying anything or anyone is “colored” is definitely problematic. For the record, “actors of color” would have worked in Robach’s situation (word salad), as would “African-Americans” or “non-white actors.” The only time – and I mean THE ONLY TIME – it’s acceptable for a white person to say “colored people” is when you’re explicitly saying what the NAACP acronym stands for.

As for Robach, she did issue an apology, saying the incident was a “mistake” and she meant to say “people of color.” She also said that the incident is “not at all a reflection of how I feel or speak in my everyday life.” Really? Because it came rolling out of your mouth with ease.

Fun fact: Amy Robach is married to Andrew Shue, from Melrose Place!

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Photos courtesy of WENN.

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187 Responses to “GMA anchor Amy Robach used the phrase ‘colored people’ live on air”

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  1. lisa2 says:

    When will the apology statement come.. I just don’t understand what people are thinking or how they can be so ignorant in this day and time.

    I’m sure she may have wanted to say People of Color.. but girl.. you just stepped in it.

    • OrigialTessa says:

      It did come. It’s in the article.

    • Rachel says:

      I wondered if this would become a story. I was watching yesterday when it happened, and I told my husband she just stepped in it. You could even see she had that *moment* when she realized what she’d said. I think it was one of those moments where she was searching for “people of color” but she just got all tongue tied and it came out backward. I kept waiting for her to issue an apology and explanation on air. That would have been better to admit to the mistake immediately and apologize on air.

      • lucy2 says:

        It sounds like a genuine mistake, but I agree that correcting herself on air ASAP would have been the best thing to do.

      • Sarah says:

        I agree, I think she just screwed up. She did apologize, I don’t think it’s fair to keep at her.

      • Sarah says:

        I was just thinking the same thought – how is “person of color” any better? Sigh. I wish we could not all offend each other when we don’t mean to. Which is different than a jerk trying to be offensive.

    • nn says:

      Well I am black and I dont see the difference between people of color and colored people.
      I find ‘people of color’ just as silly…by the way, zendaya is biracial, half white, half black so she has just as much right to play white characters. And no she doesn’t look more black, that’s just another brainwashing some people like to do. Look at a color chart and she is closer to white than black, also most black African Americans are darker skinned and look more like viola Davis but the media will have you believe otherwise. Zendaya if anything looks Filipino or Thai. Just going by phenotype but thats another story.

      • Colette says:

        Well since my parents were born in the “colored” hospital,”attended the “colored” school,had to drink from the “colored” water fountain and used the “colored” restroom in East Texas,I see the difference.

      • fruitloops says:

        I am European and in my country we don’t use these terms for ‘non-white’ people so I was just wondering if I was an idiot or there really is no difference between coloured people and people of colour because it just sounds the same to me. I was honestly confused reading the article.
        Edit-I see the difference in Colette’s message.

      • Lisa says:

        I was going to ask the same question as fruitloops but seing Colette’s response highlights the difference.

        I didn’t grow up in America and we don’t use these terms to describe people of different races. Does “people of colour” only pertain to African-Americans, or any non-white race?

      • hmmm… nn

        yea…. no black people look more like BOTH zendaya and viola, and beyonce, and rihanna….. we dont have a 1 look…. slavery made sure of that and as a black person you should know that boo….for real for real.

        Now to lisa…. yes POC (ppl of color) is used for non-white people…. it was used because white people (up until a recent time and kinda still do) prized whiteness and all that it mean and the connotation of being called white (i.e. thought to racially mean pure…ugh) so it was like WHITE or colored (bec there were just soooo many different peoples to undermine and dominate who were not white)

      • Jackie says:

        My parents were born in the “colored hospital” too. My Mom had to ride in the back of the bus and drink from crappy water fountains.

        But I’m all ‘meh’ about the term ‘colored people’ versus ‘people of color’. I’ve lived through being born ‘black’ to waking up one day to find myself called ‘African-American’.

        I’m done policing people’s language. Show me some action.

        Intent is all.

        You can point a rifle at my head while calling me ‘African-American’ or you can offer me a managerial role at your company while calling me a ‘colored woman’.

        Guess which I prefer?

      • FLORC says:

        Unless it goes directly against the storyline iDC about what color the actor’s skin is. Like they can’t cast a middle eastern actor to play Fredrick Douglass as an example. Zs casting is fine.
        That said I do sort of expect this casting backlash. Like when Emma stone played her half Asian character. Only that was worse because it’s sort of my example.

      • nn says:

        Bluegeisha, actually no, most of us aren’t lighter skinned blacks hence all the biracial actresses representing us like zendaya, halle berry, Alicia keys etc who are all biracial. There have been studies done on this and most of us are a standard brown color which to give an example, is like a brownie or milk chocolate. Standard brown and darker. Most of us do have a western African phenotype and there is nothing wrong in acknowledging that. There are still variations within this phenotype. I would like to see all colors represented in the media.

      • Shayna says:

        I think POC is inclusive – I’m Latina & use it all the time to refer to anyone who’s not white. However, “colored people” is the “nice” term your racist grandma uses to refer to African-Americans. Let’s not be disingenuous here, folks.

  2. tracking says:

    I think she probably did mean to say people of color and erred. It’s good that she apologized. (Or she’s been speaking to her grandparents recently–my 100-year-old grandma refers to POC as “colored” because she can’t remember the “new word.”)

    • Kitten says:

      I’m feeling generous this morning so I’m going to agree with you. Still, live television isn’t for the weak..gotta bring you A-game every time.

      Also, FWIW, that phrase has never “slipped” out of my mouth.

      • Whatabout says:

        A few weeks ago she said “all lives matter” when talking about black lives matter protestors. Robin Roberts face was priceless. Just a look down and a shake of the head.

      • Kitten says:

        Ugh really? I had no idea. Sigh.

      • tracking says:

        Whatabout, seriously? Ugh. And, Kitten, that’s a great point–I’ve never “slipped” and said that either. So racist or dumb is now the question.

      • La Ti Da says:

        As for “slipping”… you can only slip if the word or phrase is already part of your vocabulary. Having been raised by parents who never used racial or ethnic slurs (and didn’t take kindly to anyone who did) I can say that you don’t just accidentally put that phrase together. It must already be something you think and on some level use.

      • liz_bee says:

        My grandpa calls Asian people “oriental”, but he’s also Asian. He really doesn’t give a poop about what he’s supposed to call himself.

      • Colette says:

        I am confused why a woman her age would ever use that term for it to slip out.I could understand if she grew up in the sixties when the term was used a lot.She was born in 1973 and grew up in the 80′s so I’m confused why that term is even in her vocabulary,it’s comparable to using the term Negro.

      • Nikki says:

        Responding to LA TI DA who said she wasn’t raised hearing racial slurs, I must clarify that “colored people” was NOT a racial slur long ago; it was actually the term to use to avoid a racial slur. As far as I remember, then POC wanted to be referred to a “black” (which had a militant pride in the later 1960′s), and colored became a slur. Then “black” was rejected in favor of African-American, which was replaced by “people of color”. Only saying this because depending on where one grew up, one could easily have heard an improper term when no slur was intended. In THIS day and age, she should have
        Immediately apologized, but Shead have been flustered, and I don’t think that proves she’s a racist.

      • La Ti Da says:

        @Nikki
        I wasn’t trying to prove she’s racist, just that certain vocabulary indicates a person’s opinions on the subject they are speaking about. “Colored People” has been considered offensive for a while now and the woman works in media, she never realized that phrase wasn’t ok?

        My point was that I too know all the slurs and offensive phrases, but because I am not comfortable with them I never “slip” and use them even when fumbling a sentence. Perhaps it was a simple mistake and no I don’t think she is a raging racist, but I do think it indicates a lack of consideration and respect towards the group she is referring to.

      • supposedtobeworking says:

        where I live I tend to hear the term “visible minorities” (western Canada). As an educator I find it odd because we have pockets in my city where there are a few ‘visible majorities’ (like 1 or 2) in a class with many ‘visible minorities’. But most of our ethnic diverse immigrants are Filipino, Asian or middle eastern. We have quite a few communities of 1st generation Nairobians and Namibians, but our POC are not predominantly ‘African-Americans’ who have never lived in Africa.
        We work with the statistic that 1 in 3 students in our school system is an English Language Learner, which doesn’t include 2nd generation immigrants.

      • Crumpet says:

        I was born in 1964 and have never used that term, ever. My parents raised me right in that regard. Her age is no excuse for her ‘slip’.

  3. hoopjumper says:

    I think it’s very possible for this to be an honest mistake–a true slip of the tongue rather than a sign of her attitudes. It was right of her to apologize, though, because she really should have been prepared enough to get through the conversation appropriately.

    • Rhiley says:

      If Donald Trump were to give a speech and drop this term, I would immediately think that he is sewing one more thread into his pattern of racist ideology. But with Amy Robach, I think it very well can be chopped up to a terrible mistake, one that she recognized and for which she took responsibility.

    • Lama Bean says:

      I think it’s a mistake. I have never let that slip from my mouth but I’m also not on a national tv show after waking up at 3AM.

    • sherry says:

      I think it’s a mistake. I’m 53 and grew up in the South. That’s the term that was used most of my life. I can remember my father saying he was going to take some of our excess garden vegetables to “that nice colored lady down the street.” I don’t even think he knew her name at the time. Later, after he did that, we knew her name (Dorothy). It’s just the term that was used.

      I switched to “African American” when that became preferred and still use that (though sometimes I say “Black” or “Personal of Color”). If it were to ever slip out of my mouth, it’s because the term was generally used for decades and my brain is having a glitch.

      • Snarkweek says:

        If you were born in 1963 and were old enough to remember your family using the word colored that just means that they were unwilling, even then, to stop using the word. I grew up in the south and even by the time my own mother (born 12 years before you were) was in middle school blacks wanted to be referred to as black or Negro, if push came to shove. Access denied.

      • Daffodil says:

        Asking honestly here — isn’t it okay to use “black” sometimes? I remember being confused as all get-out when Simone Manuel won her gold medal because NBC kept saying she was the first African-American to win individual gold in swimming, and I wondered if that meant she was the first black person from the USA to win such a medal, or if she was the first black person in the world to do so. The descriptor NBC used made it hard to tell which accomplishment they were touting.

      • sherry says:

        @Snarkweek – I’m not sure where you were in the South, but I was born and raised in Richmond, VA (Capital of the Confederacy). It was a loooong time before that city caught up with the rest of the South, let alone the country.

        No, I did not have extensive experience with people of color to know what was the preferred term (no one I knew used the N word; however, my husband’s from Memphis and I can tell you, 21 years ago when I first visited, that city was far, far behind Richmond when it came to derogatory terms).

        All I know is that Dorothy was a wonderful woman, who became a good friend of our family because my father did something nice.

        I swear, sometimes I think everyone in the world just wants to be pissed off at something.

      • Snarkweek says:

        sherri
        Rural North Carolina born and raised – trust me, Richmond, VA might as well have been New York City compared to Rowan County so just no. I swear, some people just don’t know when they can’t see the forest for the trees. And I’m sure Ms. Dorothy thought your family’s excess vegetables were delightful. Bless your heart.

      • Sherry says:

        @Snark week – I have always been grateful when my neighbors bring me overflow from their gardens. It seems you are viewing the world through a negative lens and for that I feel very sorry for you. I won’t say , “Bless your heart” back to you. I will say I hope the rest of your day is blessed.

      • Snarkweek says:

        sherri
        I suggest you google ‘angry black woman’ trope and if you still feel inclined to make the conversation about my perceived negativity then I say, to you, have a blessed day.

  4. Betsy says:

    Let’s save side eye and outrage for when someone does something offensive on purpose.

    • Goats on the Roof says:

      Yes, please. Amy doesn’t have a pattern of making racially insensitive comments. She was less than perfect once and apologized. Let’s not rake her over the coals.

      People these days exhaust me. Most people seem to expect perfection every time in every situation and they pounce whenever someone makes a mistake. Intent does matter.

      • pretty says:

        with this recent modern technology thing called smartphones where we have all the information known to mankind on our fingertips, i expect people to be smarter than people a generation ago who only got their information via newspapers and mainstream media.

      • Kitten says:

        @Pretty-Ok but even smart people can make stupid mistakes. I really don’t think this is a question of intelligence, but carelessness. I could be wrong, but I don’t think it would be the worst thing to give her the benefit of the doubt, especially since she doesn’t have a history of making racially insensitive remarks, as Goats said.

      • Goats on the Roof says:

        @Pretty
        Smartphones and greater access to news and technology does not make people infallible. We are not machines. We all say things that could have been phrased better or that offend someone. It happens. As far as I can tell, Amy didn’t issue any kind of “sorry if you were offended” type non-apology. She admitted her mistake.

      • Snarkweek says:

        And all lives matter, right? *eyeroll* So if your boss slips up and calls you sweetie and slaps you on the ass, it’s just a one-off. Relax.

      • Goats on the Roof says:

        @snarkweek

        Slapping someone on the ass and confusing ‘people of color’ with ‘colored people’ are two entirely different things and comparing them is just silly. One can easily be a slip of the tongue because it’s the same words said in a different order. And AGAIN, she apologized. This ‘no excuses, no mercy!’ crap has to stop.

        If someone called me ‘sweetie’ in a professional situation, I would absolutely look at their history and what I know of that person. Sometimes a slip-up is just a slip-up.

        A male colleague I work closely with recently called me a pet name he uses for his wife. He was obviously horrified when he said it and apologized immediately. Could I have gone and reported him and made a big stink? Yeah, probably. But in two years of working together, the man has NEVER given me anything but respect. He was careless and said something he didn’t mean. Should he be dragged across the coals because of it? No way.

      • Snarkweek says:

        When it comes to racial gaffes what feels like a slip of the tongue to you feels like a slap on the ass to me. Maybe I’m ‘just being silly’ but I’ll own my own reactions, please and thank you.

    • anna says:

      totally agree. people of colour vs. coloured people, it’s semantics. let’s save the outrage for something outrageous.

      • Kelly says:

        Well said.

      • FingerBinger says:

        People of color and colored people isn’t semantics. Colored people is offensive. People have the right to be outraged because of it.

      • Naya says:

        Its not semantics. Had she responded by dismissing it as “semantics” her only defenders would be white supremacists. She accepts it is an offensive word, says it was an accident and doesnt have a racist history, thats why she is off the hook.

      • anna says:

        @ naya i get your point, there is history to be considered and i’m not trying to be insensitive. but maybe it’s counter-productive to get so hung up on terminology. it can be empowering to reclaim words in the sense of deliberately ignoring a terms’ history and thus taking the signifier and changing the signified.
        language is ever-evolving anyway but we can make conscious decisions about it, too.
        like when a woman proclaims herself to be a bad b***h. or the slut-walk. it takes away power from the people who’d use these words in a demeaning way by saying eff you, i decide who and what is offending to me.

      • Snarkweek says:

        Anna,
        Wha? You realize Amy is not a person of color, right? How is she helping anybody reclaim anything? If she wants to refer to herself as a bad bitch she can knock herself out but she doesn’t get to refer to black people as colored. So hilarious to have to explain this in 2016.

      • anna says:

        just out of curiosity, are you?

      • Snarkweek says:

        I am. Color me shocked.

    • Kate says:

      Yeah but how will anyone know we are Americans if we don’t scream and rage about every tiny mistake and offense?

      • Snarkweek says:

        And how will they know we’re not insensitive bigots unless we give incidents like this a pass? So many questions.

      • Shambles says:

        I don’t think anyone is actually giving this incident a pass, SnarkWeek. Mostly everyone I see here is admitting that it was obviously inappropriate, and that as a broadcaster she should have been better prepared and more mindful of her words. What they’re also saying is that just because it was inappropriate, doesn’t mean she deserves to be crucified. It doesn’t make her the absolutely worst, most offensive human to walk the earth. The speaker matters. If Donald Trump said this, with his history of nasty, insensitive bigotry, it would be an entirely different story. There’s no need to default to extreme and agressive and totally up-in-arms every time someone f*cks up. We’re humans and we all do it. I’ve f*cked up and called a Trans male acquaintance of mine “she” before just as a complete slip of the tongue. Do I feel guilty as hell about it? Of course. But did he make me feel like the worst person alive? No.

      • Shambles says:

        To add to the post above, after reading through several more comments on this thread… I don’t know, man. When writing the post above, maybe I liked to think I wasn’t actually giving KR a pass, but I was. Things like this make me think really hard, they bring about a lot of internal reflection on my place in the world as a white lady and the internalized biases that come with that. It’s not a comfortable thing to do, and sometimes I fight against it unconsciously. But I know it’s necessary to let moments like these act like a flashlight to shine some light on the darker spaces I hold inside me without even knowing it. Maybe I was too quick to give KR the benefit of the doubt when, as other posters have eloquently stated downthread, that word has to be pretty entrenched in her vocabulary for it to just “slip out.” Maybe I reacted too quickly to the surface-level, without taking a moment to think more deeply at what was really going on here. I want with all my heart to be a kind, compassionate, and awake human being. I’m sorry.

      • Snarkweek says:

        Shambles
        You’ve singlehandedly talked me down from the ledge.

    • justme says:

      I agree. I think it was an innocent mistake but people seem ready to annihilate her for it. People need to chill.

      • Snarkweek says:

        As i said downthread using words like annihilate and attack intentionally changes the tone of the conversation and turns Robach into the victim.

      • CharlotteCharlotte says:

        Snark week, I’m deferring to you on this.

        Especially if she has previously come off with “all lives matter”.

  5. Nicole says:

    I’ll give her a break on this one only because I don’t think she meant to say it and she’s had no problematic statements like this before. And she apologized pretty much right after the broadcast.

    But yikes

    • KBeth says:

      I agree. This does not warrant outrage in my opinion. She said something stupid, acknowledged it and apologized immediately.

  6. Erinn says:

    There’s going to be a lot of “I’m sure she meant to say x” – but she DIDN’T say x.

    Just because you are a more well spoken, compassionate human – don’t assume that others are. Don’t put words in their mouths to defend them.

    I had to get after my MIL for using this word recently. The woman isn’t even 55 yet. She wasn’t using it in a sentence that was derogatory or anything – but I ‘gently’ reminded her that that’s not the appropriate term. She grew up in a small, relatively uneducated town – and is the youngest of a large family who have never really had to think about the words they used. They were the words used in the 60′s when they were growing up, and they didn’t fully move past it. It’s a habit that should no longer be a habit.

    I’ve heard my grandmother use the word as well – and we always call her out for it. Again – she never INTENDS to be hurtful – and she’s 90 and has lost a lot of that ‘think before speaking’ – but we always call her out and remind her of what is okay.

    But regardless of intention – it’s still wrong. It’s not ‘oh I’m sure they meant whatever’ – but if it’s a word they use regularly – they DON’T mean to say something else. That is THE word in their minds. Language is constantly changing across the board – we’re constantly making changes with human rights and social niceties, and science and – well, everything. Once you know that something is no longer the accepted terminology – you NEED to move on from it.

    • Clare says:

      Also – what then did she mean to say? I dislike the term ‘people of color’ just as much as ‘colored’ people’. It normalizes ‘white’ and others everybody else, and is therefore equally problematic IMO.

      And I agree with you – intention and impact are not mutually exclusive. One does not negate the other. If you’re on television and have a platform, be more careful with your words. In fact…just everybody be more careful with your words. Words sting. I understand that she may have made a ‘mistake’, we are human, but let’s not make excuses.

    • Lostmymind says:

      Or, you, know, it could just be that as a white broadcaster she’s hyper aware of how every word that comes out of her mouth is going to be scrutinized, especially in a discussion about race, and she merely tripped over her tongue and misspoke.
      Nope, couldn’t be that. People never mix up their words.

      • littlemissnaughty says:

        No, that cannot be it, in fact. I’m not even American, English is not my first language. But there are a few words/phrases/terms I know not to use. Ever. Same in German. It’s like a tiny electric jolt whenever I hear them.

        Even IF what you say were true, there’s no need to get so huffy about it. As Erinn said, when people use words with problematic connotations, it’s necessary to remind them that it’s not okay.

      • Lostmymind says:

        Again, trip of the tongue. I think it’s pretty easy to mix up colored people and people of color. It’s basically the same words backwards. I’m speaking in a literal word context. She obviously knew she misspoke because she apologized immediately. Are you telling me you’ve never mixed up your words or tripped over your tongue? I do it all the time. Even with things I know not to say. Sometimes things just come out wrong.

      • littlemissnaughty says:

        No. I can honestly say I’ve never used a racist/homophobic/misogynist term or phrase by accident. Because as someone further down said, there’s a big red flag attached to them in my mind. I mix up my words, of course I do. But there are some that don’t come out of my mouth. Ever. And when the topic is dicey, I speak carefully.

        The only reason someone would, btw., is if they rarely think or read about the topic. Because if you do, the appropriate terms are second nature.

        And again, if none of that convinces you, my point still stands that it’s okay to correct people.

      • Erinn says:

        It’s possible – but it’s equally – if not more – possible that she just either doesn’t care, or uses the term regularly. I’m not saying she meant any harm by it – her intentions weren’t bad. But at the same time – why do we constantly go to bat for people and say ‘oh they meant y but said x’ – we don’t KNOW what they meant all the time.

        I think there’s a lot of projection that happens in these kinds of awkward situations. We tend to look at the backlash and think “oh god, if that were me, I’d be mortified” and then make it right in our heads by assuming that they 100% meant to say something else because that’s what WE would have meant.

        My dad does this a lot when it comes to election issues – he’s constantly saying “oh the majority of x group don’t ACTUALLY believe that!” because HE doesn’t believe something. He assumes that other people have the same kind of good intentions that he does.

        Honestly – it COULD be a slip of the tongue – but I doubt it’s purely from knowing that everything she says is going to be analyzed – if that were the case I think we’d see a lot more of it. It’s very possible that she doesn’t use the phrase herself, but maybe like myself – an older family member might have used it around her enough that it stuck in her head, and she tripped over words. If that’s the case, hopefully she’ll move on from this gracefully and understand why people are upset.

        Either way though – I think it’s good to call her out on it. It’s a teachable moment.

      • Snarkweek says:

        Go back and look at the reel. Smooth as butter. Slip of the tongue = lolol

    • Onerous says:

      Thank you. I admit I’m kind of shocked by the amount of excuses being made for her. You know what? People don’t slip and say things they never say. Know what I mean? A word, maybe… an entire term? No.

      • Mean Hannah says:

        Agree. As an immigrant, and a woman of color, living in America for 30 years, I have heard it all. There is no such thing as a “slip of the tongue” when it comes to racist, mysoginistic, derogatory, insulting, and insensitive words. Those words slip because one still uses it. I have a confession to make. My brother and I still use “retard” and “retarded” and we have to really work on not using them so we don’t slip up and use it. We learned English in a suburb near Boston, and kids called each other retard and retarded all the time. Wicked and wicked queer (pronounced “qu-eh-ahr) we never used much so that was easy to give up. Calling stupid things and stupid people retard and retarded still slip up for us when we are angry, though luckily we’ve only done it in front of each other and once or twice in front of my husband. It’s a struggle but it’s only a struggle because we used to use it so much.

      • Another Anne says:

        Mean Hannah, “retarded” is a good example of a word that was commonly used when we were kids, but is now (rightfully) shunned because it is hurtful. And it can be difficult for people who grew up using these types of words to eliminate it from their vocabulary. It takes work and effort, and if it slips out, the person should immediately apologize and say what they meant to say. I’ve heard young celebrities, who should know better, use these words and it drives me crazy.

  7. UCatwoman says:

    I have lived long enough to remember many different preferred ways that POC preferred to be referred as and have always used what was considered correct at the time. I would hope if I slipped and use the wrong terminology the person I was speaking to could see past the faux pas and feel what is in my heart which is love for all people regardless of race, religion or sexual orientation and forgive the indiscretion.

  8. Wren33 says:

    Since I am white, I am not one to be giving passes out. But people seem to make this slip more often than others just because of the colored people/people of color closeness. On the other hand, I can’t imagine that slipping out of my own mouth just because it has a big “RED FLAG” in my brain.

    • pinetree13 says:

      Also white and I would never use either phrase so this would never “accidentally” slip out of my mouth.
      I don’t really understand how “people of colour” is any better than “coloured people” I would never use either term.

  9. Onerous says:

    Yeah… Colored People is absolutely a racist term. She did not say she had a slip of the tongue in her apology statement. Also – who has a slip of the tongue and says “colored people” instead of “people of color?” A slip of the tongue is saying “titties” instead of “cities.”

  10. Lara K says:

    Cumby is British so I’m more inclined to buy the “slip if the tongue” apology. But Amy? If it was a slip, she would have made the same face as George and apologized immediately.

    • Zapp Brannigan says:

      I am inclined to give him less of a pass as he told an interviewer that his mother advised him to use a stage name in case his name made him a target for reparation claims by the descendants of slaves. That should raise great big red flags all over.

    • embertine says:

      Nope, the use of “coloured” is just as unacceptable here in the UK, unless you are specifically talking about South African people of San descent. We don’t usually even say “people of colour” because it’s considered racist for much the same reason, i.e. dividing the world into white people and everyone else. When I started reading American blogs that took a bit of getting used to, because it naturally made me uncomfortable.

      • Sixer says:

        Using POC took me ages as well, embertine, for the same reason, although it is more widely used in the UK now. We generally say black or Asian, as per our census denominations. But one pays attention to ensure one doesn’t use an offensive word unintentionally especially outside your own country.

        Cumbersquatch genuinely didn’t mean to be offensive. I’m sure he died inside when he got crucified. “Coloured people” is partly an outdated and now offensive term in the UK but it’s also a posh term. He just showed his privileged but highly limited background by saying it. But y’know. Tough cookies. Hopefully, he realised it’s on him to inform himself better and not just assume that what’s acceptable language to a Harrow boy is no longer acceptable to the world at large.

      • Lilian says:

        I was going to say here in South Africa coloured is a common term and is not racist. I lived in Boston for a year when I was very young and it was strange to me when people warned me not to use the term. I wouldn’t have unless explaining the diversity within my own country. But it’s a derogatory term in the USA and I never used it while I lived there.

      • LAK says:

        Me too. I didn’t know the term POC existed until i started reading American blogs and i still find it uncomfortable.

        I refuse anyone calling me a WOC. It reads/sounds rude. And why do we keep changing these terms. I’m perfectly fine being black and being described as black.

      • Snarkweek says:

        What should people of color who are not black be called, then?

      • Sixer says:

        Most non-white people in the UK, Snarkweek, would self-identify as black or Asian rather than POC. Asian implies South Asian. Other minorities are quite small in number here so would tend to use the heritage country to describe themselves in a similar way in which, say, you could describe yourself as Irish American or Italian American.

        Although, like I say, the POC term is gradually being used more often here.

        We use BAME (black and minority ethnic) a lot here for groups within organisations – eg student societies at universities, political parties – and for government discrimination and equalities policies. But there’s a growing feeling it’s outdated and should be ditched.

        I don’t think people *should* be called anything, really. I think everyone should self-identify with the term they’re happiest with. But I also think everyone should mind out for cultural sensibilities because words have very different flavours across borders.

        For example, black as a noun I would NEVER use here in the UK to describe a person. Only as an adjective. I think this is the history of the infamous “no dogs, no blacks, no Irish” signs. Yet I have seen black used a noun by Americans in both a pejorative way by nasty people and in a non-pejorative way by POC. I have NO idea of where and how and why and whether the noun usage would be acceptable for me to employ, so I just don’t. Actually, if anyone could explain the fine distinctions in American usage for that, I would be grateful!

  11. Nev says:

    She’s a broadcaster. Not acceptable. No excuses.

  12. Birdie says:

    German here. What is the difference between “coloured people” and people of colour?

    • Nev says:

      I am black.
      I am not coloured in like something in a colouring book.
      People of colour is more appropriate as it covers the spectrum that people of colour come in.
      Ugh.

      • Shambles says:

        Thank you for this, Nev.
        I know that “colored people” carries a very heavy, very ugly historical weight and is completely inappropriate. But, as a white woman who has only lived through the lense of a white woman, I was struggling to understand why “people of color” was any better. You said it beautifully and it was a very helpful clarification. Much appreciated, even though the explanation wasn’t for me.

        But I don’t know if it’s necessary to say “ugh,” as Birdie made it clear that they’re a foreign poster and aren’t as familiar with our American/English semantics.

      • Mikaila says:

        I dislike both terms. Without the historical context, they don’t mean drastically different things. However, the historical context of “colored people” is loaded and racist being that it is a term associated with strict segregation. Personally, I dislike both terms. I’d rather be black or African American, but I understand that “people of color” is more inclusive of other ethnic groups who struggle with the same issues that Blacks do, so I begrudgingly accept the term. Wish I could think of a better one though:)

    • Onerous says:

      In the US, the term “colored” is not simply just a word. It’s a very loaded term, as it was used extensively as an agent of segregation – “colored bathroom” “colored water fountain” “colored school” – the history behind the term “colored people” is what is in play here. It is a very racist term.

    • Lynnie says:

      For me, colored people is an antiquated/racist term to refer to black people/key part of segregation that was used up until the early 1970s. I’m not sure if the term coloreds was used to refer to other non-white people in that same time period.

      POC is inclusive of all non-white people. I saw it become more popular as various groups (Asians, Hispanics/Latinos, Middle Easterners) became more vocal about participating in the civil rights discourse. Today is the first time I’m seeing it as a problematic term, but honestly I see the point people are making in terms of it “otherizing” minorities. I just don’t know what would replace it though.

      • sanders says:

        I think it may be a reflection of her rarely thinking, caring and talking about issues that impact people of colour and racism. It’s her white privilege showing.

        There is now a cultural shift wherein white people are expected to be aware and considerate of the impact of racism. Some people consider this an infringement on their freedoms. This is something we don’t need to worry about.

    • Birdie says:

      Thanks to everyone for explaining the difference to me.
      Nev, I hope I didn’t offend you, it was an honest question.

      • Nev says:

        No!!!!!!

        The ugh was directed at the entire issue at hand not personally to you. I’m sorry for writing it that way.

      • Shambles says:

        I’m sorry for reading too much into your Ugh, Nev. After I posted I thought that you were probably just frustrated with having to explain this for what is probably the millionth time.

      • Birdie says:

        I am glad, Nev!
        And Shambles, thank you for trying to clarify for me.

    • TrixC says:

      I’m not American either. I understand that because of the history, “coloured people” is not ok, but the bit I don’t understand is the popularity of “people of colour” as an alternative. Personally I wouldn’t want to be lumped in with all other non white ethnicities, as though we’re all the same.

  13. Skins says:

    Don’t people have better things to worry about?

  14. LAK says:

    In the modern world, coloured people is only acceptable in SA where it is an actual racial designation and culture and not at all derogatory.

    Every where else, nope!

    Also, it hasn’t been in use in more than 30yrs so i always wonder at relatively young people using the term when people much older than them do not use it.

    • Shelley says:

      Coloured people are also found in other southern African countries, like Namibia, Zimbabwe, Zambia.

      • LAK says:

        Apologies. My SA was meant to indicate Southern Africa not just South Africa the country. I was lazy, but thanks for clarifying.

  15. Frosty says:

    Oh please. This dolt doesn’t have the power to offend me.

  16. Jade says:

    Legit question, I have an 11 year old niece who I like to teach about great music. So the other day I played her Jesus Walks totally forgetting that t “N” word was used consistently in the background. She asked me what it meant, I explained that it was a derogatory word to describe people and that it should never be said. So she asked why the singer (kanye) kept saying it…….I had no idea how to reply……

    • Because sometime after the civil war many blacks decided they were going to attempt to reclaim a word that had been used against them violently and viciously. In doing so they hoped to remove the power the word had among whites and in turn transform it into a terminology reflecting brotherhood amongst themselves. This is why it is often said “They can say it, but you can’t”.

      This is NOT the attitude of all blacks as some prefer for the word not to be used at all, every individual has their own opinions on how to deal with racism and hate speech.

    • Lena says:

      You can tell her that there is a long tradition of disenfranchised groups (or any groups) taking slurs and making them their own. But that only the people belonging to those groups should use them. If you look at some other examples, in disneys zootopia the bunny explains that other bunnies can call each other cute, but other species can’t: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=dEj5qwsDn3o. Another scene that explains it very well is in the British film pride (2014). It’s based on a real story about how during the thatcher years a London based group of gay and lesbians decided to support the striking miners. They had a charity concert called “pits and perverts” here is a clip explaining why they chose that name: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=D8ixkXeYut0. (By the way, it’s a wonderful movie, very educational and with great music, so maybe you could watch it with your niece!)

      • Jade says:

        This is amazing thanks so much, I’m not a parent so sometimes it’s really hard to know what the right and wrong thing to say is.

  17. Kelly says:

    Just curious why the NAACP change it’s name if it’s so insensitive?

    Honest question and hope I don’t get killed.

    • spidey says:

      Don’t worry the question has been asked before.

    • Lyka says:

      Lol, it’s ok! It’s a good question! An NAACP spokesman said this to the New York Times in 1998: “Times change and terms change. Racial designations go through phases; at one time Negro was accepted, at an earlier time colored and so on. This organization has been in existence for 80 years and the initials NAACP are part of the American vocabulary, firmly embedded in the national consciousness, and we feel it would not be to our benefit to change our name.”

      I actually think “non-white” is more insensitive than “colored” because it defines me by what I’m NOT than by what I AM. I use “colored person” to describe myself (in safe spaces, like with family or close friends) from time to time because it feels like a re-appropriation of something that used to sound really ugly to me.

    • Nev says:

      Naacp. The NAACP, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, is a civil rights organization founded in 1909 to fight prejudice, lynching, and Jim Crow segregation, and to work for the betterment of “people of color.” W. E.B.

      It’s been around since 1909. To change the name with the new terms would cause more confusion and take away from the cause.
      It’s like the YMCA. It originally means Young men’s Christian association. But these days everybody uses it. They also kept the
      Original to
      Avoid confusion.

  18. Smh, can’t be more offended by her than when I was on a college retreat a few years back and another young woman did the same thing. In these days of Donald Trump it all just feels like another patchwork into the wtf quilt of 2016z

    What I can’t figure out is how a broadcaster, someone who speaks frequently and is very careful in her diction, used that one.

    • Esmom says:

      “another patchwork into the wtf quilt of 2016″

      I love this phrase, thank you.

      I’m also wondering why people are so willing to give her a pass, I don’t see how someone could “slip” and say that unless it was already pretty entrenched in her lexicon.

    • Snarkweek says:

      wtf quilt = dead

    • Sarah says:

      I work with a man who called Obama a “colored guy” about 5 years ago. I live and work in a very conservative, racist area. I said, “Mike, 1958 called. They want their word back.” He never used it again in my presence, but still..people where I live and my husband’s family still use the N word, and it is exhausting and discouraging fighting them all of the time. And they use it purposefully.

  19. Lucky jane says:

    Maybe she grew up hearing it that way, got nervous and slipped up. I see some people don’t like the term “people of color” either. I honestly don’t know what is ok a lot of the time anymore and avoid saying a lot of things because I do not want to hurt anyone’s feelings. I am sure she was mortified. I think that was punishment enough.

  20. Brandy says:

    Just bad. The thing is, she didn’t even hesitate like she realized she said the wrong thing; she said it like she says it pretty frequently.

    I’ll never forget being about 10 years old and visiting my grandmother in middle Maryland. She lived in a historically blue collar working community south of the city and north of Annapolis. It was summertime and hot as Hades. We were in Woolworth’s buying coloring books. We walked up to the register, and a lovely woman was working at the counter. She happened to be African-American, which is germane to the story. My grandmother said something about how nice it was that this woman could have a job indoors or at Woolworth or something. But it came out like “so nice that colored people can work here” or equally awkward, hair-raising, and ignorant. The cashier stopped what she was doing and said, “And what color am I?”

    I knew the moment my grandmother said it – even at 10 – that she had stepped in it. My grandmother, for all of her ignorance, did apologize and say she didn’t mean anything by it. The cashier was pointed but gracious and just said in the future, watch how you say things. I never forgot it, and of course, it’s not in my DNA to ever say anything like it.

    That was 35 years ago, which puts us firmly in 1980 in Anne Arundel County, MD. Below the Mason-Dixon line but not at all considered South. Note to this idiotic woman who actually makes colossal bundles of money on GMA every morning for saying very little – just apologize. You can’t fix stupid, but you can apologize for being so.

  21. QQ says:

    TODAY I will Not be your educational Magically Delicious Mule , Light work for me so a pro forma eyeroll to Amy, her apology and the thread is ALL this gets out of me

  22. Lyka says:

    She effed up and then apologized. People of color experience a dozen tiny acts of aggression like this DAILY, so the hand-wringing and whitesplaining on this topic doesn’t accomplish much. I’ll let Ta Nehisi Coates explain the rest:

    “Elegant racism is invisible, supple, and enduring. It disguises itself in the national vocabulary, avoids epithets and didacticism. Grace is the singular marker of elegant racism. One should never underestimate the touch needed to, say, injure the voting rights of black people without ever saying their names. Elegant racism lives at the border of white shame. Elegant racism was the poll tax. Elegant racism is voter-ID laws.”

  23. Dar says:

    I had no idea this was such an offensive term. I knew it wasn’t ideal but am confused that coloured people and people of colour are not both equally offensive. Thanks for the information. I would never have used either but it’s good to know.

  24. Esmom says:

    I’ll comment on the “fun fact” since no one else has: I loved Andrew Shue back in the day and haven’t thought of him in years. I wonder what he’s up to now, other than being married to this talking head.

  25. Liz says:

    In my opinion, colored people and people of color are BOTH offensive. They sound antiquated, and very similar. I would never use those terms to refer to anyone. They’re just not part of my vocabulary.

    • Lyka says:

      Lol, so then what do you use?? (Especially considering people of color are generally in agreement about “people of color” being fine as an identifier for us).

      • PennyLane says:

        I refer to people in terms of their background: Asian, Black, Latino/a, Middle Eastern, etc. It’s really not that hard. “People of color” is a deeply offensive phrase in my honest opinion and I never use it.

      • CentralParkSouth says:

        “Black” is in no way a “background.”

      • Lyka says:

        @PennyLane: Lol, you’re telling me you can just look at me and be able to tell whether I’m Middle Eastern or Latina or Asian? Spoiler, you can’t because I check all those boxes. And if you ASKED me what I want to be called, I’d say “it depends.” I identify as an American, as a Latina, as a Muslim, as a woman of color, as an Asian, as brown…in varying contexts. When I’m with my friends who are not white, we happily refer to ourselves as “people of color.”

        It’s condescending to preach about what is and isn’t offensive to a self-determining community. Many people on this very thread identify as people of color just like me, and you should ASK people who they are before you make assumptions about them based on a categorization scheme as nebulous and internally illogical as the notion of “background.” To quote you, “It’s really not that hard.”

      • TrixC says:

        Lyka, I agree with the point about self-determination, but you should be aware that people of colour is an American term. As a non -American person with brown skin I would not want to be described that way, although I’ve certainly been called worse things. In my country we normally describe ourselves by our specific ethnicity, as PennyLane says.

      • La Blah says:

        Pennylane Ai doubt very very much that when you refer to white people you call them English/Swedish/German especially if they are in the US after several generations (as have many people of colour) you SEE the “other nationality” in people of colour but I very much suspect when you refer to white people you just call them people because like everyone else of any background, level of skin pigmentation you can’t actually tell background by just looking at someone.

  26. Yup, Me says:

    Considering the fact that it wasn’t so long ago that Black folks had to worry about being tortured and killed for saying something that offended some white person (even extraordinarily mild things like asking for a receipt for their purchase), I’m quite okay with this white lady experiencing the comparatively mild discomfort of being called out for her misstep. A couple nights of using her anxiety meds to get to sleep is nothing compared to being dragged out of your home by devils with societally sanctioned intentions to kill you.

  27. mellie says:

    I work with a 52 year old woman who used the phrase “little colored boys” the other day when referring to some boys on her sons soccer team. She had kids later life and probably never should have had them. She has no clue about diversity. None. I want to slap the $hit out of her daily.

    • me says:

      You have good self control. Can the b*tch not learn the boys’ names??? She must live under a rock and she’s not even THAT old.

    • Another Anne says:

      Ummm…I had kids “later in life” and would never use such a phrase. And I’m a couple years older than her. I assure you, people in their 50′s are quite familiar with diversity and what terms are and are not appropriate.

  28. Nene says:

    where I’m from ‘coloured’ means biracial and there’s zero negative connotation it, but I understand that in America thats not the issue.
    But if you want to offend any African, call us ‘non-white’. It is taken to mean that you’re identifying us by something we are not rather than what we are.

  29. Nancy says:

    I saw the segment and heard her say it. I think she slipped up because she would have had to known the results of saying colored people in 2016. Get more sleep Amy. Giving you the benefit of the doubt.

  30. Shark Bait says:

    This is such an antiquated term, that my eyes literally bug out when I hear it. It may have been a slip of the tongue, but it definitely has bad vibes and people should know not to use it. The last time I heard someone use this term in real life was when my aunt’s very elderly neighbor asked how her friend “you know, the nice colored girl” was doing. My aunt’s friend is in her 50s, so calling her a girl was also demeaning and bizarre. My eyes just about popped out of her skull and my aunt was nudging me whispering, she’s really old don’t get upset.

  31. HeyThere! says:

    I now say ‘the black community’ for example, hoping it’s ok. I say it instead of African-Americans because I got my ass handed to me in college for saying that to a teacher and he literally stopped my story and said, “do you think all people who are black are from Africa?” I was like well no…then proceeded to tell him that’s how I was raised and he said it’s an insult to blacks because you can be from ANYWHERE and be black. So, now I’m always worried I will offend some by just staying black or AA.

    • Snarkweek says:

      No lies detected. Did he hand you your ass or just educate you? Your choice of words are innocent but they reinforce the beliefs up and down this thread that whites will be attacked if they dare offend anyone. The language is loaded and victimizes the perpetrator.

      • HeyThere! says:

        Snark, he grilled me, made an example of me for over ten minutes. I almost cried. He was black so I assume he’s just sick of dealing with it. I was brought up in a very non racist against anyone household but was taught in high school to say ‘African-American’. I’m grateful for the lesson, I honestly didn’t know saying AA would be offensive.

      • Snarkweek says:

        I can defend what he said but not being rude to the point of making you upset enough to cry. Rude is rude even if truth is truth.

  32. me says:

    In Canada, the term “visible minority” was used for years. I’m not sure if any other countries use sit but I always hated being called that. I mean if you think about it, “people of color” are the majority of the world.

    • sanders says:

      Yes me, I remember the visible minority moniker. I didn’t like the term and am not crazy about the use of poc. I find it useful as a tool to understand racism and acknowledge solidarity between all of us who are not white and experience racism.

      I guess when the starting point is something as ugly and irrational as a hierarchy based on skin colour, we are stuck responding with words that do sound strange.

  33. defaultgirl says:

    Why is she not reading from the teleprompter?? These people don’t come up with their own lines usually….

  34. Charlotte says:

    I’m British and White and this is my honest question about something that confuses the hell out of me – why is the term ‘African-American’ acceptable? Surely many ‘African Americans’ are second, third, fourth generation etc. So aren’t they just ‘American’? Also how do you refer to somebody black who is not American? Would they be ‘African British’ or ‘African French’ etc? Also, I don’t think she should have used AA as her wording because surely that excludes the every other race that has been discriminated against in Hollywood? Also, last question, is the term ‘Black’ considered acceptable or not? I was brought up that it was quite un-PC but to me it isn’t any different from saying “You’re white” or “You’re blonde” or “You have brown eyes”. I guess I view skin colour as a trait/characteristic more than anything else.

    Apologies of this has caused offence to anyone but these are genuine questions O have as I struggle to keep up with what is or isn’t the accepted terminology. I think there are also differences between the UK/USA on this subject.

    • Onerous says:

      There is a context in which the term “African American” exists which is this: America is a nation of expats, immigrants and slave decendents. Because of this, many people refer to themselves as *-American. Like, Irish-American, Italian-American, etc. It’s a thing. I’ve found that some people really outright reject the “AA” term because they didn’t come here by choice (slavery) or because they feel no affiliation with Africa, or even because their lineage is not actually African. It’s confusing and convoluted and there should be a better way.

    • LAK says:

      Hi Charlotte, I’m Black and British. If someone asked i’d say i was Black British. My parents are African, but as far as i’m concerned, i’m British and would only tell you about the African part if you asked. As far as i know most people in the UK say Black / Asian British unless they are very sure where someone is from eg do you remember when we called Black Islanders Afro-Caribbean as a catch-all phrase? That’s a term i rarely hear these days. Mostly it’s just Black or British or both.or the country they originally come from eg Asians described as British of Pakistani origin without going into further details of exact spot/tribe in Pakistan.

      The equal opportunity forms we fill out when we have any public services, including social services or jobs tend to be very detailed in ethnicity identification such that it’s not enough to be Black, it asks continent and country ie Black African or Black Caribean and then asks if Black from Somalia ( as an example) or Black from Jamaica ( as an example) or Black other. Ditto Asian questions. Ditto White questions.

      Don’t know what the Europeans call themselves though someone once posted on this board said they preferred to be called Afropean ( Afro-European, getit?!). I’ve also seen a username AfroBrit, so it remains simple.

      Whilst i’m not speaking for everyone, i think i’m right in saying that all these other dessignations tend to come from North America. At one point they were fine with Black Americans, then it became African American, though this might have been a response to everyone else referring to themselves as ethnicity – American eg Irish-American, then it became People of Colour. All in the space of 25yrs or less. I’m sure in another decade it will have changed to something else.

      • nn says:

        LAK, why do you say black British and not just british? Isn’t the black part already visible and obvious? Sometimes I find british black people almost apologetic about being british so have to add black before british so as not to offended anyone. Is it the permanent guest syndrome and not wanting to seem like you are overtaking someone’s turf? Is it shame or embarrassment that someone might think of you as self hating? Just wondering.

      • LAK says:

        95% of the time i say British only, but when i travel to countries like America where race/ethnicity is an identifier, i say Black British because they can’t seem to understand that i can be British only where they insist on being African American rather than American.

        That said, Identifying as Black British isn’t self hating or apologetic. It’s a catchall phrase for entire Black community in Britain because despite our colour, we are actually culturally very different. Culturally Nigerians are as different to me as Jamaicans or South Africans (as examples). If i visit their homes, it would be as exotic to me as visiting someone with a European culture. Since that cultural ethnicity is so strong, it’s sometimes hard to remember that we are British too. Yet we wouldn’t call ourselves African British because not all Black communities in Britain are from Africa. The Caribbean communities have a very strong distinct culture which is different from any of the Africa Communities.

        And it’s easier to simply say Black British as opposed to explain the nuances of why culturally we are as diverse as Europeans or Asians.

        I’d venture that’s why Asians would call themselves Asian British sometimes despite visibly looking Asian.

      • Sixer says:

        What LAK said. I remember Afro-Caribbean! Also, some black Britons prefer to refer to origins when self-identifying. Our census also allows people to identify as they choose. So some British people will refer to themselves as either Black Caribbean or Black African – it doesn’t mean they don’t see themselves as British: it just means they are signifying their heritage when they self-identify. Most though, like LAK, just say Black British.

        Likewise, some Asian Britons prefer to say they are British Indian or British Pakistani – here there are obvious considerations surrounding the current disputes between those countries, where Britons may still have families.

        People should describe themselves in the way they want to describe themselves and the rest of us should simply respect whatever choice they make.

      • nn says:

        Thank you, appreciate you taking the time to explain!

  35. applepie says:

    I’m not an old person. I didn’t however realise that ‘coloured people’ was wrong until a few years ago. I struggle to know what words are ok. Is black not good either? I genuinely do not know. I kinda feel that ‘non whites’ sounds bad though it seems negative not positive…… All I want is for all people and living things to be treated with respect. In our civilised society it’s sad we are still having to have these conversations. So I don’t think she should get too hard a time.

    • me says:

      Well the thing is what offends one person may not offend another. Not all POC are the same…we all have different beliefs and get offended by different things. So it’s hard to find ONE term that everyone agrees upon. Most of the time, no one asked us but TOLD us what we are going to be called. I have to say, to me “non-white” is the most offensive.

  36. Dumbledork says:

    To the poster above who seems to like the “r” word, seriously, get a clue. Using the word as a kid wasn’t acceptable, and it’s not now. It’s offensive to a lot of people.

  37. Shelley says:

    So many things to side-eye here: people who think coloured and people of colour are easily interchangeable; those who think POC is also offensive; and those who don’t know what the current politically correct racial terms are in their country.
    For those people who have to deal and engage with race issues on a daily basis, the term POC becomes necessary and is not at all offensive. It doesn’t diminish anyone’s cultural identity but there are times when it becomes necessary to refer to all people who are victims of racism by White people.

  38. Charlotte says:

    Shelley I think that is unfair. Many posters have said above “ask us if you’re unsure”. Then when we do ask we get “side eyed”. You can’t have it both ways – would you rather we didn’t strive to better ourselves and be more sensitive to others? Because it seems like you are judging me for not knowing the answer and then judging me for asking the question.

    • Snarkweek says:

      Charlotte
      The ones who have asked have had their questions answered kindly and patiently. Those who have superimposed their own versions of what is acceptable or offensive/inoffensive have been challenged. Some are here to grow and learn. Some are here to whitesplain and/or be dismissive and combative.

  39. ugh says:

    THIS IS THE SAME B*TCH THAT SAID ALL LIVES MATTER. She was sitting next to him and robin and said it after the texas shootings. It was quick before commercial break. She’s on the wrong channel. She needs to go to fox news

  40. savu says:

    Local news anchor here. I could see an innocent tongue-tie. Kind of everybody’s worst fear in this industry. Yes, words matter. We ad-lib things ALL the time, and I seriously think this was her making this a more active phrase by nature. We’re literally taught to get rid of “clutter” words like “of”. This one just so happened to not come out well… and to be honest, especially being younger, colored people doesn’t immediately sound alarm bells in my head. But I didn’t grow up in the south or have ancestors who dealt with that specific phrase in a derogatory way. I’m aware that that shapes my perception of the world. We all have different sensitivities.

    Innocent mistake that would’ve been better if she corrected immediately, and said that was a slip of the tongue, I’m not reading off a prompter, I was trying to shorten a lengthier phrase – that was lengthier to avoid using an offensive, dated term. I’m sorry I screwed up while speaking and that offensive, dated term came out.

  41. spacelab says:

    some questions. please bear with me, i’m european and english isn’t my first language. i understand that you guys are discussing a topic with serious history, and i’d rather you inform me than call me an idiot. so:
    1. how is it racist to use the term “colored” while it’s ok to call people “white”?
    2. how is it NOT racist to call someone “non white”? i mean, defining someone by a negative? to me that sounds a lot like “boys have a penis, girls don’t”.
    3. what’s the accepted term?
    here, pc is written large, which sometimes makes thing tricky. i have a dark skinned friend from panama who cringes every time she is called african, even if she knows people are trying.

    • LAK says:

      1. History. White people oppressed people they insisted on calling coloured whether or not the oppressed people wanted to be called coloured. It remains a very loaded word.

      Further, to be coloured was to be something not normal in a negative way. That designation was made by white people who historically declared themselves as normal compared to everyone else.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/30999175/warning-why-using-the-term-coloured-is-offensive

      2. Lots of words are being used to describe people who aren’t white. Non-white covers all other races and ethnicities that aren’t white without getting into specifics. Btw, white isn’t just North european ancestry. It includes southern European Ancestry and the Middle East.

      3. It depends which country you are from. Every country is different. What we can agree on is that coloured people is wrong because of history.

      4. Your friend needs to look at it as a teachable moment because there are many ignorant people who think dark skinned people are from Africa and no where else.

      Plus she needs to address why she finds it distasteful to be mistaken for an African because that could be her own internalised prejudice and that’s why she cringes.

      • spacelab says:

        thank you, LAK. i still find the term “non white” highly racist as it defines being white as normative. my friend is a proud latina who doesn’t suffer fools.

  42. JRenee says:

    I don’t believe there has to be a collective agreement to be Black, African American or POC. Forms and other venues use the term African American, it’s only in those circumstances that I use the term.
    I am perfectly fine with being Black.
    I’m not okay with negros or colored.
    An on air acknowledgement & apology would have been appropriate. The All Lives Matter rhetoric comes off as a disagreement that Black Lives Matter. Those are 2 incidents that could be argued reflect a way of thinking.

  43. Khady says:

    I just don’t understand America. I am black to be more specific African. If someone refer to me as a colour person I will find it very offensive. I am black and will forever be black just refer to me as the black lady if you don’t know my name. No need to put colour. White is a colour right? Maybe I should refer to every white person as coloured cos for me white is a colour.

  44. Vox says:

    I don’t think you really slip up with terminology unless you use it or hear it used around you a lot so I’m not sure I really buy it being a derp moment, in that she used ‘coloured people’ instead of ‘people of colour’ accidentally.

    But I don’t get how ‘people of colour’ is any less offensive and I try to avoid the term because I don’t think it sounds any better than ‘coloured people’. I’m white but I see ‘people of colour’ as being fairly ‘othering’ and it seems to paint non-white people as the majority by default.

  45. Frey says:

    Funny, my mom just said the same thing the other day; it’s ” a person of color, not colored people”. She said a doctor called her a colored person and sue flipped the fuck out on him. Made me laugh.

    Who ever this chick is, she is dumb.