Are the Dutch racist? Zwarte Piet

Discussion in 'Europe' started by Anguille, Dec 23, 2008.

?

Zwarte Piet is a racist custom.

  1. Yes

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  2. No

    87.5%
  3. Undecided

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  4. Don't care either way

    12.5%
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  1. Anguille
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    Anguille Bane of the Urbane

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    The Dutch Santa comes to Holland on a boat from Spain accompanied by his Moorish servants, the Black Petes.

    Some people are offended by this but the Dutch just laugh. What do you think?



    [​IMG]
     
  2. Anguille
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    Anguille Bane of the Urbane

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    Sinterklaas - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    The Sinterklaas feast celebrates the birthday of Saint Nicholas (280-342), patron saint of children. Saint Nicholas was a bishop of Myra in present-day Turkey.

    Sinterklaas has a long red cape, wears a white bishop's dress and red mitre (bishop's hat), and holds a crosier, a long gold coloured staff with a fancy curled top. He carries a big book that tells whether each individual child has been good or naughty in the past year.

    He traditionally rides a white horse. In the Netherlands this horse goes by the name "Amerigo," while in Belgium the horse is either nameless or is called "Slecht weer vandaag," literally "bad weather today." The origin of this unusual name is the children's TV show Dag Sinterklaas' by Bart Peeters. In Flanders, up to the mid-20th century, Sinterklaas was depicted using a black mule, rather then a horse. This image is preserved in the Nero comic books, where, oddly enough, the mule insists on being referred to as the "horse" of Sinterklaas.

    "Zwarte Piet," Sinterklaas' helping hand Black Pete, has his origin in the bishop's legendary past. Three small Moorish boys were sentenced to death for a crime they did not commit. The bishop intervened and they were saved. To show their gratitude, the boys stayed with Sinterklaas to help him, tumbling and jumping on rooftops on Sinterklaas night to deliver presents. Their black skin may refer either to their Moorish background, or to the job of chimneysweep, an option is corroborated by their clothes, reminiscent of an Italian chimneysweep's costume and Pete's rooftop occupation.

    Sinterklaas and his Black Petes usually carry a bag, which contains candy for nice children and a "roe," a bunch of willow branches used to spank naughty children — in actuality a chimneysweep's broom. Some of the older Sinterklaas songs make mention of naughty children being put in the bag and being taken back to Spain. The Zwarte Pieten toss candy around, a tradition supposedly originating in Sint Nicolaas' story of saving three young girls from prostitution by tossing golden coins through their window at night to pay their father's debts.


    [edit] Sinterklaas during World War II
    In the lean times of the German occupation of the
     
  3. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    If that makes them racists then what does it mean that our Santa exploits elves?

    Does that make us SIZEists?
     
  4. Anguille
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    Anguille Bane of the Urbane

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    LOL!

    I said this in another thread but ..

    Did you hear about the midget fortune teller that escaped from jail? It was a small medium at large.
     
  5. Toro
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    Toro Diamond Member

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    The Dutch are amongst the most tolerant people on earth.
     
  6. Anguille
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    Anguille Bane of the Urbane

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    So far the score is 3 to nothing that Zwarte Piet is not racist phenomenon.

    I haven't voted because I still can't make up my mind. I do know I love the mischievous little Black Piets. They are much more interesting than the very formal Sinterklaas. There are many Dutch stories and jokes involving Zwarte Piet.

    I do think he would never make it in Hollywood though. Blackface is so looked down on here.

    It's not always apparent what constitutes racism. In any case, racism is not black and white. NPI
     
  7. PatBuchanan
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    PatBuchanan Rookie

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    I think it would not have been an issue if the colors were reversed. We live in a society, where only White men can be "racist". White men are evil - men of color are good. The Black community plays White liberals like a fiddle; knowing they'll get special treatment in return. I'm tired of treading on eggshells around the Black community.
     
  8. Munin
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    Munin VIP Member

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