Times ARE changing

Richard Gaskin ambassador at fourthworld.com
Sun Jun 7 04:06:09 EDT 2020

Richmond wrote:
 > If some of these types who go on endlessly about anything that might
 > be vaguely construed as 'racist' were capable of slightly more subtle
 > thought they might examine intentions: after all if we all judged
 > people on what they looked like most of us would be out of a job and
 > starving.

There is also the problem of linguistic false cognates. Similar words 
from different regions often have very different etymologies.

While the stories of the old British Empire can be charming (I love the 
two hard-bound volumes of Kipling my father gave me), the Indian tale is 
unrelated to both the origins of the American word "sambo" and its 
colloquial use.

On this continent, much of our language is influenced by the Spanish who 
were among the first Europeans to explore and settle most the Americas.

 From Wikipedia:

    The word "sambo" came into the English language from the Latin
    American Spanish word zambo, the Spanish word in Latin America
    for a person of mixed African and Native American descent.[3]
    This in turn may have come from one of three African language
    sources. Webster's Third International Dictionary holds that
    it may have come from the Kongo word nzambu ("monkey") — the
    z of (Latin American) Spanish being pronounced here like the
    English s.

Complicating matters further is the difference between etymology and 
popular usage, as Ms Gay has reminded us with good humor over the years. :)

English-speaking people in the US didn't use the word until after the 
American Civil War, popularized mostly by the losing side of that 
conflict as a derogatory term.

Though the war was long ago, the legacy is evident. We needn't go any 
further on that here in this programmer's list.

It is indeed unfortunate that those who used the word most commonly in 
the States have cast an unfortunate pallor on a tale from the other side 
of the world, and that Samuel Battistone and Newell Bohnett found 
themselves in an awkward spot with their restaurants well known for 
excellent pancake breakfasts.

Indeed, the Santa Barbara restaurant is still family-owned, and the 
current manager Chad Stevens has expressed a hopeful note about the name 
change that goes into effect this Friday:

"With the changing world and circumstances, the name isn’t just about 
what it means to us, but the meaning it holds for others. At this point, 
our family has looked into our hearts and realize that we must be 
sensitive when others whom we respect make a strong appeal. So today we 
stand in solidarity with those seeking change and doing our part."

Maybe best of all, the new temporary name they'll be using while the 
family decides on a permanent one is: "☮&LOVE"


By any name, the restaurant at 216 W. Cabrillo Blvd in Santa Barbara is 
well worth making a point of visiting whenever you're passing through 
that part of California's coast.  The pancakes are truly awesome.

This is quite off-topic, and I hope this momentary indulgence in 
etymology and pancakes doesn't stray too close to cheese.

Back to our regularly-scheduled LiveCode discussion, where I'll post a 
question about the Browser widget next...

  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World Systems
  Software Design and Development for the Desktop, Mobile, and the Web
  Ambassador at FourthWorld.com                http://www.FourthWorld.com

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