Monday, March 23, 2009

Pakistani TV Producers / Directors / Hosts Are Idiots

Daniyal Raheel, the host of Driven - a car show which airs on the Pakistani channel Style 360, reviews a fancy American car from 1964. He's quite an insightful man so let's hear what he had to say about the car's interior:

"the interior of the car is pretty dark, maybe could've done with some wood finishing, looks a bit dangerous. I don't know if I can say this on TV, this interior makes me feel like a nigger."

Aired 21:30 PST, 23-03-09.

29 comments:

dudelove said...

hahahahaha.... tidd'ch marod pae gaye hasde hasde.

naqiya said...

wowwwwwww.....

what does that even mean???

naqiya said...

ps: aks you fool! call me one of these days i have big news!!!!

Ahsan said...

Quite frankly, I don't even know what that's supposed to mean.

It is interesting, however, to see how the word "nigger" is represented in other cultures outside the U.S. It certainly does not carry the sociopolitical connotations that it does in America. I suspect for this Daniyal fellow, it just means "something cool affiliated with rap videos".

Raza said...

Oddly enough, the facebook status of my 15yr old cousin who's otherwise pretty urbane, but has never really left Karachi, read something to the effect of:

Let's celebrate anti-racism day today!!!! No one can call me nigger :) LOLZ

Anonymous said...

The’ N’ word-- the grand daddy of all slurs is used more liberally among teenagers of all races and ethnicity in the world, although its use is still widely viewed as unacceptable and hostile. In the world of hip-hop culture, this has become a term of endearment. In Mexican culture, it is used as a neutral term. I know that a term like “moreno” for a black person is not considered offensive.Hispanic and chinky are often used as racial slurs not the word 'N'.

peeno said...

Why blame the whole industry just because one individual said something like that? Just wondering...

Ahsan said...

Raza:

As much as I hate the "Lol" acronym, I hate it even more with the z added at the end. For whatever it's worth.

Anon901:

Last year, a pretty similar thing happened on India's cricket tour to Australia. Harbajhan Singh called Andrew Symonds a monkey (allegedly). Symonds is dark skinned and (I think) has Aboriginal roots. Anyway the point was that the Aussies perceived this to be a racial insult, when in fact in South Asia, monkey is a very common non-racial insult. Ethnic slurs don't always carry across borders and cultures, as you say.

Peeno:

I agree. AKS has a terrible habit of generalizing.

SJV said...

I feel that as a people (sub-continent) we are perhaps the most racist in the world...skin color, religion, caste, region to which you belong, urban vs rural- u name it and we can come up with the choicest of phrases!

I personally always have a hard time figuring out when does it stop being a stereotype..and start becoming a racial slur!

Abt the Harbhajan Symonds saga..i still have my reservations whether it was "monkey" or a far more common desi gaali which sounds similar

AKS said...

To be fair to the host he didn't come across as an ass or even an idiot. I think he meant to say bad ass but instead of nigger, a term which made no sense.

Moreover, as is apparent from the statement, the host felt that what he was saying was not kosher and therefore it would've been appropriate for the director to intervene. Even if it skipped the director's attentions at the time of filming, the director and producer(s) should have cut the statement from the show.

On a personal note, I don't agree with the commenters indicating that nigger doesn't carry negative connotations in Pakistan. During 7th and 8th grade I was bullied and taunted by the 'cool kids' about the colour of my skin - my family is from South India and I'm darker than most Pakistanis. The slur of choice was 'nigger.'

I can understand that the term may no longer seem offensive to teenagers but the host here was at least as old as me, if not older. So I don't think it was okay for him to use the term.

Dudelove:

What?

Peeno:

The generalisation is unfair and I apologise.

But as a matter of personal opinion, formed not just on the basis of this show, I do believe the Pakistani electronic media to be inhabited by a large number of complete idiots.

Anonymous said...

@AKS

I agree with you that in subcontinent, 'n' word is used to make fun of people who are on the darker side and therefore, Fair and lovely is so much popular there.

Ahsan said...

SJV:

Maybe Harbajhan said "Maan ki" and not "monkey" but still my point remains that it wasn't intended as a racial insult. Though why he would say something to Symonds that the latter wouldn't understand is beyond me. What's the point of sledging if the other guy doesn't even know you're sledging?

AKS:

I'm not saying that "nigger" doesn't carry negative connotations, but I am saying that its sociopolitical connotations are limited at best. To illustrate this, please ask yourself what would have happened if a TV host in the U.S. said "nigger" -- and he wasn't black.

The form in which "nigger" is imported to non-Western cultures is basically in the form of hip-hop lingo and wannabe badassness.

Anon620:

Fair and Lovely is actually quite useful as a sunblock. When NB and NB's dad and I went up to the northern areas of Pakistan a couple of years, we used copious amounts to protect us from the sun (which is very harsh at that altitude).

But yes, its widespread use for its express purpose says a lot about the type of society we live in.

Anonymous said...

hey AKS.. does the 'K' in your name stand for KALA!?!? LOLLLLLZZZZZZZZZZZZ!!!

AKS said...

@ Ahsan

I understood your point, my comment was directed more at anon 901.

Triple S said...

I would completely agree with AKS for the media is dominated by idiots. Most of them seem completely devoid of reality.These pseudo-intellectuals have no idea of what they are talking about. For instance, the issue of restoration of judges was termed a national issue.
Either that or they are manipulative, greedy war-mongers. At least thats what Hamid Mir. I mean, how else does an opportunist make money.

NB said...

@Ahsan

Please do not give away the great fair and lovely secret. And by great secret, I refer not to its use as an uber effective sunblock, but that all three of us (and rehmat i think) used it on our manly trip to the mountains.

naqiya said...

Ah the great return of NB!

@nb, ahsan, and nb's dad (dnb):
worry not. shah rukh khan is here to save you and your manliness:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0b0T20luJtI

and:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/magazine/7010885.stm

Anonymous said...

@AKS

I agree that' n' word is used as an insult in the subcontinent but because of hip hop culture, teenagers have now started using it as an endearment term.My brother was also subjected to this humiliation because of his dark skin.My best friend is from Chennai and desi people makes fun of him by calling him Brownie or Idli but he retaliates by calling them 'bhaiya'- a derogatory word for north Indians.

If I Were you, I would have called those cool guys 'albino'- a disease where you can't even make out the color of your skin.

It is ironical that north and south divide in the subcontinent is still based on skin color.

@Ahsan

Fair and lovely is a bleaching cream not a sunblock. Yeah, I agree that we have a long way to repudiate the definition of beauty that fairness means beauty and dark skin color means ugly.That's why FAIR AND LOVELY is so popular there. Here, beauty means tall and skinny.so, people are fitness freak.
beauty lies in the eyes of beholder.

somethingrichandstrange said...

NB please come back to fiverupees! your posts really added to the diversity of opinion on this blog and are missed much. and your irreverent humor too, of course.

somethingrichandstrange said...

AKS: dudelove is saying 'my stomach is in knots from laughing so much' in punjabi. the humor of the words is lost in translation, though.

Ahsan said...

This is what happens when we let goddamn Mohajirs on the blog. AKS, don't you know Punjabi is our REAL national language? Please brush up on it if you'd like to remain a contributor.

Anonymous said...

ahsan, i realize there is a punjabi hegemony in pakistan, and its great if you guys blog about it. but are the snide comments really necessary? it happens quite frequently here, and i don't know, it might be an inside joke between you or whatever, but it just comes across as mean-spirited.

dudelove said...

to me daniyal came across as a bumbling idiot who didn't have a clue of what he ended up saying. ali g for real.

i find it hard to associate this with racism etc etc.

Ahsan said...

Anon555:

My friendship with AKS would end if I didn't pick on his Mohajirness. There'd be nothing left to talk about.

AKS said...

Well Ahsan, I for one dont take your comments in jest. Whenever you make a comment disparaging the brave men and women who crossed over to Pakistan, a little part of me dies inside.

Ahsan I believe we have a lot more to talk about than just my roots and the color of my black skin. We can talk about art, sports, philosophy, history - why, a kaliedescope of conversation topics remain unexplored between us. Imagine who enriching it cold be for or friendship. Yet, you insist on beating me over the head with your politically crass jokes. And now it has reached a point where I feel faint.

I have spoken to my partner and I feel that if you feel that our friendship exists on the fabric on anti-Mohajir (uugh, cant believe you have forced me to use that slur), then I'm afraid we have no friendship at all.

It has been enjoyable. I will treasure the memories. Like riding our bikes down 26th street. Sharing an ice cream at Snoopy's. Teaching each other how to make out by practicing on each other. Being there for you at your wedding.

Farewell.


p.s. Sorry that my name is not hyperlinked at the top of this post but I was unable to log into my account.

Ahsan said...

AKS:

You're too stupid to hold your own on conversations about art, history, philosophy or sports, which is why I don't bother.

And the second last paragraph of your comment made me sort of throw up in my mouth. Thank you for that.

Raza said...

I love LOLZ, use it all the time.

NB said...

@AKS

Vaisay the older you get the more your online persona resembles a grumpy Queen Elizabeth.

@Somethingrichandstrange

Thanks, thats quite nice of you to say. While I i'd written random stuff over the last few months, for a number of reasons I obviously havent actually posted. That'll hopefully end soon. Not saying I'll be regular, but at least I wont be a stranger to my own blog.

Taru said...

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


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