Saturday, June 24, 2017

How to stop yourself getting Gypped...

I remember watching TV a few years back and seeing someone say in an interview that they got 'Gypped'...and not an eyelid batted.

Just a few weeks back a good friend of mine was telling me how someone had 'Gypped' him in a business deal.

Even in scholarly, academic, and other circles, people use the term Gypped without any knowledge that this is an offensive term and that its meaning is extremely damaging.

The Meaning and Origin of Gypped
The term Gypped (or Gipped) comes from Gypsy, itself a pejorative term for the Romani people.
Gypsy (Gyp, Gip, Gyppo etc.) comes from the mistaken belief that the dark- skinned nomadic (not always by choice...a topic for another time...) people originated in Egypt--hence Egyptian became 'Gyptian' and 'Gypsy'. Now that may seem quite innocent...but it's also ignorant and by extension oppressive...similar to how Europeans called Native Americans 'Indians'.

The systemic and persistent racism against Romani people goes way beyond just the use of an ignorant name to describe them. 
It has become the common association of the Romani people with cheats, thieves and liars. And THAT is the common use of the term 'Gypped'... So--if you're using the term, you are implicitly promoting the stereotype of Romani people as thieves and cheaters. And if that's not just plain racism...I don't know what is. 

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