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Yid Army

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As a Jewish Spurs supporter who regularly attends Tottenham games, I was disappointed by David Baddiel's article (Yes David Cameron, 'Yid' is really a race-hate word, 18 September). Simply put, his argument is that the Y word is the antisemitic version of the racist N or P words. This ignores the fact that yid is the Yiddish word for Jew and that in the US there is a Yiddish paper called Der Yid. So it's not the word that is the issue, but the way it is used. Just like the way calling someone a Jew for the way they behave is clearly a derogatory comment.

I do recall visiting White Hart Lane in the late 90s and was startled on hearing the chants of "Yid", "Yid army" and "Yiddo" echoing around the ground. But since then I have grown to find pride in those very chants. At a game a few years ago I overheard someone ask their neighbour what the supporters were chanting. The fan explained the chants and added: "I am not Jewish but these chants relate to the club, its heritage and its historic links to the Jewish community." This has stayed with me. How nice to be in an environment where being Jewish and its symbols were recognised, valued and a visible part of a football club's heritage.

In all these discussions, what I find disturbing is how the victims of the antisemitic slurs are now the ones standing accused. Somehow these chants are now meant to be the reason why Chelsea and West Ham fans sing songs about Auschwitz and make hissing sounds. So the logic goes, ban the Y word and the problem is solved. There is nothing new in the victims being accused of inciting others to hate them – and that is something Jews do know a lot about.
Ashley Harshak
London

 

• I am Jewish. I have had a season ticket at Spurs for nearly 50 years. I really do not mind Spurs fans chanting "Yiddo". It is others using this word that is objectionable.
Colin Ettinger
London

 

• Why is David Baddiel being given a platform to talk about prejudice? Baddiel and his partner Frank Skinner spent the mid-90s ridiculing the ethnic appearance of the black striker Jason Lee. For the crime of choosing to not look white, and instead embracing the combination locks and cornrows iconography of his ethnic heritage, Lee was ridiculed as a "pineapple head", as looking "like an ancient Egyptian" and – incredibly –

. Viewers were even encouraged to send in pictures mocking Lee's appearance.

God knows how much damage this did to a generation of young black school children. Professor Ben Carrington in Football's coming home but whose home? and do we want it? P108 noted how this abuse "transcended the normally insular world of football fandom and entered into the public domain as both a descriptive term and a form of ridicule for any black person with dreads tied back". Taking its lead from Baddiel and Skinner, the Sun even pictured Lee with bananas growing out of his head.

The myth of black primitivism is an enduring racist theme. The assumption that black identity exists to be performed for white people's amusement only goes back to the minstrel tradition. Both racist tropes permeated Baddiel's mockery of Lee. Yet we're now supposed to take lessons in anti-racism from the man? 
Dr Gavin Lewis
Manchester

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This is all our campaign has been trying to do: make the racism heard, above the chanting...

That was the very last line in the column, his own words, and I think it sums it up perfectly. To paraphrase: all we want is for people to stop forgetting the hate in this word, stop using the word in a positive light, and keep this prejudice at the forefront of everyone's mind....

The word fag is offensive too but is used every time someone goes for a smoke. Same word. Same potential for its sound to cause offense to someone. Still used a million times a day without any complaint.

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The word Yid, when said at WHL, means Tottenham. Plain and simple. It doesn't mean Jewish in a positive or negative way because it doesn't mean Jewish, or anything else for that matter. It means Tottenham.

So maybe the people trying to eradicate this hate from our society should stop doing everything they can to keep this hate at the forefront of everyone's minds. And it'd be nice if they stopped taking this pride filled, meaningful, positive word of ours and trying to attach something so awful as that to it...

I'm sure some might say that the word came from hate and that's why it can't be used. Well when 34000 fans are chanting it and loving the fact that it is part of their identity, do you think any of those people have any hate in their minds or their hearts when saying that word? I don't. I think, actually I know, from personal experience, that when I'm using that word, it's with absolute love. And that's the only thing that should matter when talking about random meaning we as people assign to words.

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"On a separate note

My Dad was bombed out twice in one night in the blitz then fought in El Alamein in WWII, my Mum worked in London throughout the blitz legging it down the stairs on the office block into the shelters whenever the doodlebugs came over then back up again when the all clear sounds to go to work like nothing had happened, they had spirit, they had backbone, they were brave, they were not going to give in EVER. Believe me they didn't do all that so that in 2013 we (English) were expected to accept our soldiers coffins to be derided and not respected for fear of upsetting a rapidly growing minority

If being proud to be English and wanting England to be 'English' makes me a racist then so be it, Id rather be that than a pathetic lilly livered weakling , jeez we'd all be talking German if these PC pansies had been so prevalent during the war"

What a load of bollocks - millions of Indians, Pakistanis, Bangladeshis, Kenyans, Tanzanians fought in BOTH world wars for their King and Country, which incidentally IS THE SAME AS OURS!!!!!

Your Grandad (and mine) fought for freedom from precisely the kind of racist nonsense being spouted here. We are all human, racial boundaries are arbitrary.

Errmmm show me where I mention anything anti another skin colour or race ,where do I say other skin colours/races didn't fight in the war too, I know they did .  I am simply saying it should be OK to be proud to be English, respect our dead soldiers etc , its you that's seeing the segregation in that, and that's your problem mate , look at yourself

 

See someone dares to say theyre proud to be English and I knew someone would jump on it and make stupid accusations , we cant say we're proud to be English anymore, it might upset someone who isn't prepared to say it

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This is the first logical and understandable counter argument I've heard on matter:

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/sep/17/david-cameron-yid-really-is-race-hate-word?INTCMP=ILCNETTXT3487

 

Well done David Baddiel, even though I still am not in agreement with you.  However, at least now our fans might have a starting point to begin talking about it, because anything else said so far from the 'opposition' has made no sense what so ever.

 

The way the FA are addressing this issue is very poorly put together and communicated.  As for Herbert, of course, he is never helping.

 

Proper communication of the reasoning and ensuing discussions, debate etc. has to be high on the agenda or you are going to end up with huge problems.

The more I read this article, the more I am convinced that we are on the right side here.

 

In some respect I find what Baddiel said very distrespectful not just for the Jewish Tottenham fans, but for all the Jewish people. To me it sounds like it's the Spurs' fans fault in the first place if Chescum, WHam and Arsenal fans use the word against them. If we stopped using the word then the fans of the other teams will stop as well. He is insulting his own roots here, he's just telling to his people and to who supports their people to shut up and ggive the good example Probably he's just very envious of whet we are as opposed of what Chelscum fans are.

 

The other thing he said that convinced me even more that we should keep singing what we want is:

 

"The equivalent case would be a club in Brixton made up mainly of white fans adopting the N-word as their "badge of honour". This, I think, would be stopped fairly quickly."

 

Well, personally if that happened I would take my hat off to those white fans and give them my full respect

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Errmmm show me where I mention anything anti another skin colour or race ,where do I say other skin colours/races didn't fight in the war too, I know they did . I am simply saying it should be OK to be proud to be English, respect our dead soldiers etc , its you that's seeing the segregation in that, and that's your problem mate , look at yourself

See someone dares to say theyre proud to be English and I knew someone would jump on it and make stupid accusations , we cant say we're proud to be English anymore, it might upset someone who isn't prepared to say it

Granted, in that post you didn't but in previous posts you had both defended EDL/ BNP and commented on ways Chiriches could get his work permit quicker by implying that immigrants play the system to get housing and benefits.

I AM proud to be English but would not wish to be associated with EDL, BNP or anyone who wishes to treat people of other races or nationalities as somehow sub-human.

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Granted, in that post you didn't but in previous posts you had both defended EDL/ BNP and commented on ways Chiriches could get his work permit quicker by implying that immigrants play the system to get housing and benefits.

I AM proud to be English but would not wish to be associated with EDL, BNP or anyone who wishes to treat people of other races or nationalities as somehow sub-human.

Erm  again where? 

 

sorry but its you reading things into words, and that's your problem YOURS

 

I haven't defended the EDL or BNP or treated people of other races as sub human and I resent being accused of doing so on this forum of which I have been a long standing member, simply said that they stick up and say things that many others think but don't have the guts to say. I said there are the moronic members in them same as there are in football supporters clubs but many people are better citizens, well respected

 

I did NOT suggest immigrants play the system I said and I quote "

how come he still aint got his permit  this country lets in every piece of turd going and houses them for free, yet someone who presumably is going to pay £xxxx in tax a month isn't let in so easily,  stupid country if I weren't English Id hate the place,"

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Andy,  I respect you have different views to me, so lets call it a truce, I apologise if anything I said was upsetting in any way , it wasn't intended , I do have strong feelings about things especially anti English sentiments from people living here (not saying you, I meant the extremists)

 

But I like this place and don't want to be spoiling it with some petty row .

 

I haven't been asked to do this, just got up this morning and thought ahh sod it, my god I must be growing up!

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Andy, I respect you have different views to me, so lets call it a truce, I apologise if anything I said was upsetting in any way , it wasn't intended , I do have strong feelings about things especially anti English sentiments from people living here (not saying you, I meant the extremists)

But I like this place and don't want to be spoiling it with some petty row .

I haven't been asked to do this, just got up this morning and thought ahh sod it, my god I must be growing up!

MJB, obviously you're expecting/ hoping for an answer from Andy, in the meantime....I wrote here a few days ' I was drinking up and leaving' in a word quitting this forum because of people making racist comments and I had you in mind at the time But I'm back. not to have a go - that would be wrong. But whereas Andy had the conviction - 'the balls, ' as you might say, to challenge you I said at the time I didn't want to get into an argument and I could see you and I might have one BIG one! A couple of the moderators contacted me to check why I was leaving and I said I wasn't in the business of naming names or educating people ( which now I think about it is patronising or a waste of time and energy) YidArmy posted a few days ago saying he hoped he hadn't offended anyone and he would think more about what he wrote. I was tempted to come back on here and either click 'Like' or post a reply saying that takes balls too. But I thought hang on you left you can't even come back to say that. And until now, I thought the last thing you would do is try and call a truce. I got you wrong- particularly as you say you weren't asked to do it. Maybe people on here having a row about 'racism' can't be seen as "petty" because the subject is too important but whatever it's still a row and I didn't join the forum expecting that - so that's why I left. I even checked when you started on here and I thought we'll he's one of the old timers and I'm new so maybe my views won't be welcome here anyway. I respect you for your "let's agree to differ" position (my words not yours) and I was pleased to see Turkish asking for no racist comments. I don't think it's too hard with all the topics we can talk about here to avoid the ones that might start people off e.g. Race, Politics etc . This is a long way of saying - you're being sensible and mature about it and I've missed the place so I'm back. " What are you drinking?"

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MJB, obviously you're expecting/ hoping for an answer from Andy, in the meantime....I wrote here a few days ' I was drinking up and leaving' in a word quitting this forum because of people making racist comments and I had you in mind at the time But I'm back. not to have a go - that would be wrong. But whereas Andy had the conviction - 'the balls, ' as you might say, to challenge you I said at the time I didn't want to get into an argument and I could see you and I might have one BIG one! A couple of the moderators contacted me to check why I was leaving and I said I wasn't in the business of naming names or educating people ( which now I think about it is patronising or a waste of time and energy) YidArmy posted a few days ago saying he hoped he hadn't offended anyone and he would think more about what he wrote. I was tempted to come back on here and either click 'Like' or post a reply saying that takes balls too. But I thought hang on you left you can't even come back to say that. And until now, I thought the last thing you would do is try and call a truce. I got you wrong- particularly as you say you weren't asked to do it. Maybe people on here having a row about 'racism' can't be seen as "petty" because the subject is too important but whatever it's still a row and I didn't join the forum expecting that - so that's why I left. I even checked when you started on here and I thought we'll he's one of the old timers and I'm new so maybe my views won't be welcome here anyway. I respect you for your "let's agree to differ" position (my words not yours) and I was pleased to see Turkish asking for no racist comments. I don't think it's too hard with all the topics we can talk about here to avoid the ones that might start people off e.g. Race, Politics etc . This is a long way of saying - you're being sensible and mature about it and I've missed the place so I'm back. " What are you drinking?"

I'm glad you're back mate,and sincerely meant the words in my apology post. I got it wrong,and was gutted that my silly comments may have contributed to you leaving.Again I'm sorry and it's nice to have you back.

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As a Jewish Spurs supporter who regularly attends Tottenham games, I was disappointed by David Baddiel's article (Yes David Cameron, 'Yid' is really a race-hate word, 18 September). Simply put, his argument is that the Y word is the antisemitic version of the racist N or P words. This ignores the fact that yid is the Yiddish word for Jew and that in the US there is a Yiddish paper called Der Yid. So it's not the word that is the issue, but the way it is used. Just like the way calling someone a Jew for the way they behave is clearly a derogatory comment.

I do recall visiting White Hart Lane in the late 90s and was startled on hearing the chants of "Yid", "Yid army" and "Yiddo" echoing around the ground. But since then I have grown to find pride in those very chants. At a game a few years ago I overheard someone ask their neighbour what the supporters were chanting. The fan explained the chants and added: "I am not Jewish but these chants relate to the club, its heritage and its historic links to the Jewish community." This has stayed with me. How nice to be in an environment where being Jewish and its symbols were recognised, valued and a visible part of a football club's heritage.

In all these discussions, what I find disturbing is how the victims of the antisemitic slurs are now the ones standing accused. Somehow these chants are now meant to be the reason why Chelsea and West Ham fans sing songs about Auschwitz and make hissing sounds. So the logic goes, ban the Y word and the problem is solved. There is nothing new in the victims being accused of inciting others to hate them – and that is something Jews do know a lot about.

Ashley Harshak

London

Very well said Mr. Harshak, particularly the last sentence.

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This topic is clearly stirring up a lot of feelings and everybody responds in a different way.Some are instinctive as they come in your head you have to write them some taken back and thought about.I think we all need to stick together maybe end this thread and start another with just a pole of is it or isn't it offensive leave a reply of why and how you feel about it and no quote replies.Everybody has strong feelings about this that may run deeper than just the word yid it all depends on what you have experienced and what you have seen happen. At the end of the day i love all you fuckers and WE ARE TOTTENHAM WE ARE TOTTENHAM SUPER TOTTENHAM FROM THE LANE.

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Anyway baddiels still a knob jockey, and sorry to anyone but I really can't see his point? But then I'm a little retarded..surely it's only used at football thats the issue, therefore it's a football matter.....it's only used at spurs, therefore a spurs matter....therefore untill the Jewish community associated with spurs make it apparent their unhappy with the chanting or non Jewish spurs fans then its time to find a new identity.

As for the race thing the country's fucked plain and simple, I don't care about colour and enjoy peoples company from all over but for me the problem lies with over populating this country with people that are simply not needed. If you were having a BBQ with an averaged sized garden would you invite 10 times the people it could hold? What if only a few bring beers and food which would mean people were unable to eat?anyway I hate these arguments as no one leaves the conversation happy.

Anyway I find that tottenham give me an identity that I now find hard to associated with England, and it feels like the same issues we had putting up st George's flag. Why these people keep telling me who and what I can support.

Be proud of who you are and what you stand for as long as it doesn't intentionally hurt someone and its for the greater good..

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This topic is clearly stirring up a lot of feelings and everybody responds in a different way.Some are instinctive as they come in your head you have to write them some taken back and thought about.I think we all need to stick together maybe end this thread and start another with just a pole of is it or isn't it offensive leave a reply of why and how you feel about it and no quote replies.Everybody has strong feelings about this that may run deeper than just the word yid it all depends on what you have experienced and what you have seen happen. At the end of the day i love all you fuckers and WE ARE TOTTENHAM WE ARE TOTTENHAM SUPER TOTTENHAM FROM THE LANE.

I agree,love you too mate XXX Ha ha ha

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on the bright side

 

i never really knew any jewish people until i started supporting spurs. Now i have met plenty - both on line and in my travels.Im PROUD to say i have some friends who are jewish, and its all due to being a part of the YID ARMY...

 

wouldnt it be nice if everyone could solve their problems over a game of football and a beer?

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