Dorchester Historical Society apologizes for inadvertent message on holiday-event postcards

Dreaming of a white Dorchester

The Dorchester Historical Society is apologizing for a postcard advertising a holiday event that features a graphic of its headquarters building in a snow globe and the slogan: "We're Dreaming of a White Dorchester."

In a series of tweets today, in response to people getting or seeing the postcard, the society says it now realizes why that could be taken the wrong way and that that was never its intent - it was trying to riff off the Bing Crosby Christmas song:

We are very truly sorry about our graphic used for this event. This was an unfortunate oversight on our part and the event photograph has been removed from our social media. We were simply changing the words to the classic Christmas carol and did not think it through properly.

We certainly are not happy with its VERY unintended implications; horrified might not be strong enough of a word.

We are truly horrified as we never want to project that message.

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Comments

An honest mistake

By on

That will be blown out of proportion. The Dorchester Historical Society just stepped on the third rail of Boston politics and the society will not survive. Please tell me the society has a diverse membership?

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Voting closed 42

It has tried to diversify but

By on

It has tried to diversify but basically appeals to older people who are white. It’s not entirely it’s failt I guess but this totally tone deaf card won’t get them any further. Also if this was the south and that card was sent out it would be by the KKK and not some butter fingers DHS

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Voting closed 9

People who see a snow globe and deride

By on

the slogan - an obvious play on White Christmas as racist, then deride the Historical Society as being tone deaf really need to lose that huge chip they have on their shoulder.

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Voting closed 20

Its about trust.

Racism is insidious. Most adults have been through sensitivity trainings that basically taught people how to not act racist, without addressing or changing their real thoughts. It is something that seems hidden until something stressful happens and the hate pours out.

I am glad that that the Dorchester Historical Society took this mistake seriously. They need to set themselves apart from the long history of Historical Societies that "innocently" whitewash American and world history. Despite the fact that the first casualty of the American revolution was of African descent, the daughters of the american revolution did not admit African Americans until 1977.

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Voting closed 28

Don Quixote

By on

sees racist windmills everywhere.

Society would function a lot better if people had a thicker skin instead of turning every slight, real or perceived, into a dramatic re-litigation of the centuries of suffering of my ancestors at the hands of your ancestors. There are a lot more perceived slights than real ones and there are volumes full of documented evidence for what happens when life is governed by grievances. It's all ugly.

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Voting closed 45

Stop being disingenuous

By on

If this had happened ten years ago, it might fly under the radar. Ten years ago, we didn't have nearly as many white people in this country who were completely open about their desire to make America white again. Today, in a country whose President* blows racist dogwhistles every day and has Nazis working in the White House, it's incredibly tone-deaf. Do I think it was an intentional racist statement? No, probably not: you'd have to be incredibly stupid to do such a thing. But telling people to "grow a thicker skin" when your lily-white skin isn't targeted is the mark of a true asshole.

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Voting closed 53

Hey lbb, grow a thicker skin

By on

Then tell me again how all the Jews Trump has working in the White House are really secret Nazis.

Like I keep saying, if you keep hearing dog whistles everywhere, it might be you who has the problem. "Everyone's crazy except me" is not an argument, and "everyone's a Nazi, especially the Jews and people who work alongside them" is also not an argument for pretty much the same reason.

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Voting closed 37

Is your reading comprehension poor or purposeful?

It is about trust. This really could be just a dopey mistake. My point is that is not reasonable for people to trust that. I think your so called thick skin in the problem. We need to talk these things out more. In my work, I have been accused of racism in ways that seemed unreasonable from my point of view. The advice i received from supervisors (of diverse backgrounds) was just do your job the right way and don't worry about it. This is true to some extent but it didn't help people trust me more. It isn't a comfortable conversation, but I am not afraid to have it because I know at least my intentions are moral. I have learned to say that you are entitled to your opinion but it takes time to learn anyone's true motives.

PS. Lotsa racists have "friends" of various diversities. it is a very meaningless argument.

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Voting closed 15

Is yours?

By on

Lotsa people will instinctively distrust other people for no reason other than their skin color. These people are called racists. Their psychoses and paranoia is their problem. If someone does that to you and you choose to allow it to become your problem, then that's all fine and dandy but you do not get to make that decision on behalf of anyone other than yourself.

Furthermore, turning a silly lapse in thinking into an existential crisis does not make you a conquering hero, bravely braving the thorny issues of race and class and something else to put in an Atlantic headline. It makes you silly.

PPS. It's not a meaningless argument. If the accusation is made that I hate all people of X background, and then I point you to my friends, family members, or even myself who is of X background, it's a perfectly valid refutation. Calling it a meaningless argument is a smokescreen to save face.

It's not fun to have bullshit called on your bullshit, especially if you've lived your whole life being told that it's ice cream, but you're probably better off finding out it's bullshit sooner rather than later. You can still pretend it's ice cream, of course, but at least you'll be making an informed choice.

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Voting closed 14

You aren't paying attention.

I made no accusations. I said its about trust. And now you've twisted it around to say that if you are distrust people that are white you are racist.

You can't deny that racism against black people is expressed subversively. You can't deny that this card could be interpreted as a white supremacist sentiment. But apparently you can demand everyone to trust that it was a careless mistake. Trust has to earned, it is not an entitlement. And you can mistrust someone without violating their rights as citizens.

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Voting closed 5

I didn't twist anything. I told you why I disageed with you.

By on

You can keep asking me if I "deny that racism exists" until you're blue in the face.

I'm not going to bite because even if it weren't a sneaky form of a "have you stopped beating your wife" question, it would still be irrelevant. Here's why it's irrelevant:

The accusation is made that the Dorchester Historical Society really is all hooded up and dreaming of a capital-W White Dorchester.

There is no evidence for this. You present none. You present accusations and presuppositions and demand that they be treated as fact.

Not gonna happen.

Someone somewhere else who's not in the Dorchester Historical Society and is hooded up and pining away for the bad old days is not relevant to the question of what was in the minds of the people who let this slip through.

Here's an analogy. Bret Kavanaugh was accused of presiding over rape parties in high school. No evidence for this was given, but plenty of examples of Harvey Weinstein doing his thing were given to create the impression that "rape culture" is pervasive. Bret Kavanaugh is not Harvey Weinstein. That's pretty simple, but it bears repeating. If person X commits a crime, that has no bearing on whether person Y committed the same crime.

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Voting closed 7

Kavanaugh was accused of sexual assault, not just presiding over

By on

Brett Kavanaugh was accused of sexually assaulting a woman, by the woman. Not just presiding over rape parties. Evidence was given (her testimony), you don't have to believe it, but it is evidence. HIs evidence was to deny and claim he mistakenly used common sex slang incorrectly in his diaries.

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Voting closed 6

I haven't accused the

I haven't accused the Dorchester Historical Society of racism, I have stated that they are not entitled to the trust of the community. I have pointed out that there is enough evidence to mistrust them. It is not a true history of america to leave out the contributions of the people of color. The first permanent colony of non native people in north america was african. They were brought to the Carolina's by the spanish in 1526. The spanish colony failed but the descendants of slaves that rebelled live there still. Native Americans and African people have fought in every war on North American soil, but you wouldn't know about that from these so called historical societies.

Lotsa people will instinctively distrust other people for no reason other than their skin color. These people are called racists. Their psychoses and paranoia is their problem.

That is twisted. It is not psychotic for people of color to mistrust white people. Pretending that anyone is crazy for recognizing abuse is step 1 in the bully's playbook. No matter how much word salad you spew, that isn't going to work on me.

Nobody formed an opinion about Brett Kavanaugh because of Harvey Weinstein. My personal opinion is that Kavanaugh lied about many things. The important thing he lied about was his history of legal work. When you look at the credible accusations that were made against his sexual conduct these things were wrong but not illegal (or at least there would not be enough evidence to sustain a charge). Had those sexual allegations been officially investigated at the time, he would not have been prevented from being eligible to serve on the supreme court. His choice to lie about this and his legal work are consistent examples of his character. This is why I believe he is not qualified to serve on the supreme court.

Trivializing rape and racism won't make these things disappear.

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Voting closed 7

Why the mistrust?

By on

I have stated that they are not entitled to the trust of the community. I have pointed out that there is enough evidence to mistrust them.

This is honest curiosity. What's the evidence, other than this greeting card?

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Voting closed 6

Trust is not an entitlement.

Historical societies are racist. I provided several examples of that. Google it. I don't think we can prove anything about the motives behind this greeting card. The evidence neither condemns the dhs or exonerates them. therefore, it is about trust.

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Voting closed 5

You did not provide examples

By on

Except to note that the Daughters of the American Revolution did not admit African Americans until 1977, 41 years ago.

My question is about the Dorchester Historical Society. You answer is blanket, not specific to the organization. Are you going to claim that the Roxbury Historical Society is racist? Was Carter Woodson inherently racist because of his love of history?

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Voting closed 4

if you need help using google then say so.

It is not a true history of america to leave out the contributions of the people of color. The first permanent colony of non native people in north america was african. They were brought to the Carolina's by the spanish in 1526. The spanish colony failed but the descendants of slaves that rebelled live there still. Native Americans and African people have fought in every war on North American soil, but you wouldn't know about that from these so called historical societies.

I have not claimed that any single historical society is racist. I have stated that historical societies have racist history, mostly from willful ignorance of actual history. And here is a situation where each of us can decide for themselves whether DHS deserves the benefit of the doubt.

All of these criticisms for my simple truism about trust is making DHS seem more sinister. Why so insecure?

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Voting closed 5

Thanks

By on

I disagree with your answer, but I was honestly curious about where you were coming from. Now I know.

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Voting closed 5

No, no, no

By on

I'm being honest. You answered my question. I didn't come to debate this time. Seriously. And yes, I know you are reading this looking at the tone as being smawmy, but what can I do about that? I'm writing it in an even tone because I'm not trying to be passive aggressive, but tone is something that people read, not what people write.

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Voting closed 4

Nope, not going to do it

By on

I didn't come for an argument. I honestly came for information, which you provided. Rather than go 10 or 12 rounds, let's agree to disagree. You've got Roman to fight with this time.

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Voting closed 3

I am not goading you.

I can’t see what fact or opinion that you disagreed with. Several vague statements of disapproval that contribute to your reputation of looking down on everyone but don’t answer the question.

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Voting closed 4

It's personal opinion

By on

I could tell you, we could go back and forth again and again, with each post getting worse, not changing either or our opinions.

I just wanted to know where your statement came from. I got it. Again, thanks.

Also, by "your reputation" you meant "what I think of you", right?

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Voting closed 1

Again pretty vague, which as

Again pretty vague, which as close as you get to admitting you are wrong. And I guess you can pretend that its only me, but I just have a very direct style. It also fits in with the fact that you hear what you want to.

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Voting closed 0

Wrong?

By on

I didn't state a position, which means I cannot be wrong.

I do believe that someone like to argue when no argument is needed. Which means I will leave you to have the last word, which, if history shows us anything, will be rather odd.

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Voting closed 6

Exactly as I said. No real

Exactly as I said. No real position, just vague criticism.

However you did say that you disagreed with me.

Thanks
By Waquiot on Fri, 11/30/2018 - 2:11pm

I disagree with your answer, but I was honestly curious about where you were coming from. Now I know.
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and then

By Waquiot on Mon, 12/03/2018 - 1:29pm

I didn't state a position, which means I cannot be wrong.

You don't have to tell me what that meant, but it is reasonable for me to ask. You can continue to mildly insult me over four posts while refusing to answer that question, but you can't pretend that you are here to discuss issues. It is free speech, but it is not respectful speech. You can keep pretending that I am the only one that notices but that's not real.

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Voting closed 2

Don't you see how this attitude is part of the problem?

By on

Let's state an ideal: a race-blind society where people are treated as individuals rather than pigeon-holed into roles based on superficial and/or immutable characteristics of birth. Under that ideal, no one gets a license to prejudge people as trustworthy or untrustworthy based on their skin color.

How do you get to that ideal? You live it. Now. That means forgiving past sins, not holding them over the heads of people who had nothing to do with them, and actively restraining yourself from hallucinating them in the absence of any real slights.

I'll give you two examples:
1. Fuck you for telling me I'm untrustworthy because some white guy who wasn't me fifty years ago fucked over some black man who wasn't you.
2. You'd tell me to fuck myself a thousand times over if I were to say I didn't want Barack Obama or Deval Patrick or Corey Booker or whoever in office because a black kid who wasn't him kicked me in the groin in elementary school.

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Voting closed 3

trust is earned

All of these examples seem to be about compelling someone to change their mind. Why not actually earn some trust? For instance you could stop nagging me over and over, when my answer is the same. Having a high standard for trusting people is not immoral.

Why have you typed 3763 characters demanding the benefit of the doubt for this incident? Why do you keep criticizing me for simply saying that it is a question of trust?

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Voting closed 4

Maybe because I don't trust you

By on

Trust is earned therefore distrust until proven otherwise?

Maybe that's not such a bad idea, but then we come to the question of how we want to live. Skepticism of the accused, or skepticism of the accuser? Shake down everyone leaving the store for stolen items or shake down no one without reasonable suspicion? Assume everything you're told by all people at all times is a lie or take information at face value unless given reason to believe otherwise?

A lapse in judgment is a perfectly reasonable explanation here. Why assume it isn't, and why rake anyone over the coals to prove the negative that it isn't an expression of hatred?

Hallucinating racist windmills is the simplest explanation I can think of, and one I find quite plausible given the large amount of that I see out of your side. Calling Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner and little-old me Nazis is the kind of thing that makes me lose trust in your ability to reason about reality.

You've got to earn it back.

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Voting closed 4

More twisting

I have never called you a nazi, why are you insecure about that?

None of this is a hallucination. Word salad won’t intimidate me.

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Voting closed 4

Here's a historical society you might like

http://www.royallhouse.org/

Little is written about the lives of enslaved people at the Royall House. Census and probate records have preserved the names of more than 60 men, women, and children enslaved by the Royalls. For a list of names and tenure of these individuals, see Documenting Those Enslaved by the Royalls. This number is probably representative, but may well be incomplete. More importantly, most of what we know about their daily lives has been unearthed through the archaeological investigations at the site.

The Royall House and Slave Quarters clearly discusses how the plantation was built and run on the labor of enslaved Africans and seeks to honor their contributions through excavations, interpretation, and scholarship on Northern Slavery.

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Voting closed 7

This seems very cool.

This seems very cool.

These responses have been really strange. I’m not against the Dorchester Historical society. I bought a mug from them at the Christmas bazaar. There is a real double standard or people interpreting these kinds of things. All I ever said was it’s about trust.

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Voting closed 1

So

By on

You have no problem with the DHS?

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Voting closed 1

I never did.

It's about trust. It is reasonable to not trust DHS. I can understand that. Read my posts. If you look at the big picture, the mistake they made evokes the general problem of historical societies that only tell the history of white people. Linking to a webpage of a society with present day diversity, leaves out the history. I linked the globe editorial, because it specifically addresses the phenomenon of disparate interpretation. For instance white students giving the Nazi solute and black athletes getting fined for "gang signs" (that looked like a b or an ok). I never once said that DHS is racist, because i would have to know the individuals better.

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Voting closed 1

So amusing

Mr.Hateful Redneckpseudobot lectures people on how to live.

How cute.

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Voting closed 18

Whoa, there partner...

By on

I mean whoa!!

You probably think you are pretty sharp there, Ro, but ya see if you make comments, regarding this error in judgment, that include people just need to grow a pair without really taking into consideration, well, heck, the entire history of race relations in the city (try it some time, excellent reading), you end up looking like, well, a racist.

Although I do agree with you that some slights are not worth the time to get your panties all in a wad. However, let us look at context in this case (which is also very important, Ro). Without boring you with the history of race relations in the city of Boston (which you can read about yourself), for the historical society to be so, well, ignorant of that whole fun time and print a card such as the one printed and not even think it might be construed to mean something that else, well, shame on them.

I except it was a bonehead mistake on their part and hopefully a teachable moment. But you should really pull back on your reins before going all Ayn Rand. The context of each situation needs to be taken into consideration...always.

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Voting closed 3

Really?

An "honest mistake" requires that it is possible that anyone capable of critical thought could make such a "mistake".

THIS IS ABOUT AS CLUELESS AS YOU CAN GET! This is on the same level of "mistake" as printing up cards that say "Merry Fucking Christmas" with dredles on them.

It is only an "honest mistake" if it was put out by a group of people with clinically evident dementia who otherwise spend their days watching 50's TV reruns and rereading Hardy Boys mysteries.

Unless that is the case, playing dumb just ain't gonna cut it here.

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Voting closed 13

Has anyone actually used a printing company in Dorchester?

By on

You could see the most hilarious signs if you drive around. Printers make mistakes all the time. One business had a sign advertising laserdicks some are open seven day a week. Printers and sign makers make mistakes
Could it be that the person in charge of the copy was careless?
Anyone who lived through white flight would know that in that time Whitey Bulger was in control of the area too many families left the city to get away from the chaos crime and riots so don’t go tagging everyone a racist that’s silly. Why wouldn’t Families want an entire home instead of living in a crowded triple decker.

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Voting closed 6

.

I guess Bing Crosby was a racist too then, right?

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Voting closed 18

Wow

Is this an epidemic of cluless "honest" dementia causing this?

Brain Romaine?

Amazing. We should call the CDC?

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Voting closed 8

.

that doesn't even make sense.

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Voting closed 26

Whoa there, partner...

By on

I mean whoa!

Take a chill pill, Swirls, really, it is the holiday season. Yes, this incident is cringe worthy and, yes, I can't even imagine how it could happen but some people are truly clueless and not spending money on printing Christmas cards to send a racist holiday message. I don't know if you have ever worked for a museum and/or volunteered at your local historical society but I have and I can attest not everyone that works there is, how shall we say, using common sense on a daily basis. Now perhaps someone at the said historical society needs to find another line of volunteerism but their apology seems heartfelt. Maybe some community meetings to foster discussion? There is room to learn from this experience. I know you always think well and critically and kudos to you, Swirls! But good people sometimes do fuck up.

So, how about pouring yourself a cup of good strong eggnog (or two or three), put on those fuzzy slippers and mediate on how some non mentally challenged folks can and do do dumb and hurtful and embarrassing and (fill in your own word) things.

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Voting closed 3

You seem like such a nice

By on

You seem like such a nice concern troll.

Actually, the nice part? Strike that.

You are just a concern troll talking about being civil without ever showing a shred of decency.

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Voting closed 1

Obviously an honest mistake

It's not like there's anything in the History of Dorchester that might give the Dorchester Historical Society pause before using a harmless and historically-neutral phrase like "White Dorchester".

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Voting closed 7

I gotta roll my eyes

By on

And not at the Dorchester Historical Society. I see why they are apologizing.

But to whoever thought that is was some kind of racist statement, it would appear that you are out of touch with the people who currently live in Dorchester, and particularly those who are active in the community, like the fine people at the DHS.

You know who is dreaming of that kind of Dorchester? A bunch of OFD folk living in Weymouth, Marshfield, Plymouth, and parts in between. The DHS folk are looking at it in a Bing Crosby way, and to be honest, as long as it's only a few inches and not that rain/snow combination that turns into ice, I'm hoping that all of Boston has a white Christmas.

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Voting closed 94

wow. Way to trash folks from

By on

wow. Way to trash folks from Weymouth, Plymouth and parts in between. Who's bigoted now? Fight racism with .... more racism? (and no, I am not from those areas so don't be jumping to more of your erroneous conclusions)

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Voting closed 18

Ever hear of "white flight"?

My mother grew up in Dorchester, and moved out to the 'burbs (back then, all the way to Malden) "before everything changed".

Between the FHA redlining, predatory lenders, and realtors telling whites to "get out NOW, because because once they move in, you're house won't be worth anything", the push out to the suburbs was entirely based on white supremacy, whether explicit or implicit.

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Voting closed 56

No, just stop.

By on

No, just stop.
The desire for suburban life knows no color. Many immigrant Irish, Italian, Jewish, etal, moved from the city once they were established. There's nothing wrong with wanting driveways, yards and a quiet life.

[my parents found the lack of diversity in their new suburban home quite disarming at first, but as with many suburbs starting in the 70s, they also became more diverse]

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Voting closed 15

Whatever

By on

Yeah. It was all racism and had nothing to do with wanting more space, less noise, and better schools. Fresh air, trees, and not going to bed to the sound of gunshots and police sirens are white privilege, we know.

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Voting closed 30

Which must be why

By on

Boston housing prices remain at historic lows, new development has stagnated, and apartment occupancy rates are so low landlords can't make an honest buck: no one wants to live within walking distance of amenities or public transportation.

We know why YOU want to live in a lily-white 'burb, Roman. Don't project your own insane motivations onto anyone else.

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Voting closed 14

Blinkered and angry

By on

More people live outside of Boston, Cambridge, and Sommerville than in them. More people live outside the five boroughs than in them. Some people like the city, more power to them. Other people like open space and green lawns. That's OK too.

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Voting closed 17

That describes Whitopias

Blinkered, angry, and running away because they are scared of nothing!

Urbanized areas tend to be far more tolerant of differences because living near people means learning to get along or else. No hiding with your guns!

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Voting closed 8

I know you are

But what am I?

Your ignorance -- WILLFUL ignorance -- about the history of this country and this state ceased to be amusing a long time ago.

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Voting closed 5

You're a really negative person Swirly

By on

Maybe it's because you like to live your uhub life like it's 1962 in Alabama all the time, or maybe you are that way because you've been making yourself see monsters under your bed for so long.

Lighten the fuck up. Life is too short to spend it knocking people down and pointing out deficiencies they don't really have. Go ride your bike, listen to some good music, go to the museum on kimono night. Anything. For your own good.

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Voting closed 32

Awww

Did some snowflake get hurt feels?

Can your mommy come over to make you feel like an important little boy again?

I'm a negative person? Well, your white supremicist nationalism and hating on (other) immigrants makes you such a ray of sunshine!

Honey, maybe you should just see a shrink. Seems to be the consensus. I'm having a hard time telling your subject lines from those of a certain perennial chicken little around here.

In the meantime, I and others will continue to call you out on your specious haterade at every opportunity.

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Voting closed 6

And lazy too

By on

No evidence of introspection, critical thinking, or any sign of expressing thoughts that weren't voted on by committee. Just blind faith that you're right.

Kind of like the (possibly) apocryphal tale of the end of the House of Wisdom in Baghdad: the conquering general said burn it down. If the books agree with the Koran, they are superfluous, if they disagree they are blasphemous.

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Voting closed 19

"honey"?

By on

Addressing someone as "honey"?

That's straight up harassment.

I find it offensive, and totally tone-deaf in today's climate.

Just wow. Should be removed from the page immediately.

--------

There, see how that works.

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Voting closed 11

Fair enough

By on

I didn't mean to say that all the OFDs that moved to the South Shore are racist, but I do think it is safe to say that those who left Dorchester when other racial groups moved in because they wanted to stay in an all-white location did head south. I mean, I went to school with some of these people, and some of them were more open minded that I am.

That said, I will note the story of a Haitian teen-ager who worked for me back in the late 90s. Heading off to college, she said her roommate was from Walpole but she lived in Roslindale with her family until the early 90s. I gave the employee a warning to be wary, and sure enough there was some kind of ignorant incident freshman year. I bring this up to once again note that there are a fair amount of people on the South Shore who "fled" Dorchester. Are all of them racist? No, but some are.

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Voting closed 12

well meaning, generally kind

By on

well meaning, generally kind people can still goof and unintentionally say hurtful or cringeworthy things. it doesn't invalidate their intent, nor was anyone raising the pitchforks to ruin these people - most everyone understood it was a thoughtless oversight. but still an oversight.

doesn't mean they should leave it up and double down. displacement and gentrification is a touchy issue in large parts of dot and unfortunately, due to our history, those things are linked to race in the US. it creates a context in which these issues are in the background, and thus the postcard, instead of just bringing up fuzzy warm happy holidays feelings, pinged people's awareness of these problems. it muddles the message DHS is trying to send.

so if DHS is full of kind and well meaning people who've goofed and sent out a message with a bunch of unintentional connotations, why wouldn't they want to clarify and apologize for any hurt feelings? that's what "fine people" usually do.

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Voting closed 14

Dumb

By on

Dumb to apologize for that. So I guess they don’t want snow in Dorchester on Christmas now because it offends some thin skinned people.

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Voting closed 32

I'll bite

By on

There definitely is a downside to there being a lot of snow in a densely populated place like Dorchester. I don't want to type the phrase, but it rhymes with "face savers," and it stirs up all kinds of emotions.

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Voting closed 8

Ignorant

By on

Ignorant

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Voting closed 10

I'm glad they apologized

Oh ffs ...I thought it meant they wanted only white people to live in Dorchester, Now I know it was just an honest mistake.
I can do without the snow myself.

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Voting closed 10

To those who take outrage at

By on

To those who take outrage at the PC crowd, sure, if you ignore Dorchester’s recent history –and by extension the City and entire Country’s history- this is a perfectly fine and innocent message. But then there is this thing called context, and one doesn’t have to look far at all to find out that the propaganda of white supremacists is filled with innuendos and double entendre. How do you think the message “Make America Great Again!” resonate to most African Americans?

I know some of the people at the Dot historical society and I have no reason to believe that the message on this card was intentionally duplicitous. Their apology is likely sincere and I’d give them a pass. That said it may be a good time for these folks to reflect on what the Dorchester Historical Society stands for. When your board is filled with older white folks, you are less likely to catch such blunders.

Colonial and Victorian times are interesting and fun to learn about, but not particularly relevant to the majority of today’s Dorchester residents. How about bringing some Vietnameses, Blacks, Cape Verdeans and Hispanics on board and have exhibits speaking of recent migrations to the area, red lining, (wishful) school desegregation and more recent neighborhood changes that make Dorchester what it is today? If thoughtfully designed, that’s an exhibit I would want to visit. As much as I enjoy those, I’ve seen enough dusty chandeliers, portraits of white men, and weedy graveyards already.

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Voting closed 36

The Dorchester Historical

Society is an all-volunteer non-profit organization. They are always looking for new members and volunteers. It's an opportunity to get involved, contribute, and participate in future programming.

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Voting closed 21

Time for a change

Medford had a citizen insurrection remove the entrenched, tone deaf, corrupt old-boy group that was running the historical society. (Massive 501c(3) violations and poor management of properties and resistance to volunteers).

This is perhaps a bit more benign - a case of some completely isolated and clueless people who could use some input from the non-isolated world? It can be done either way.

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Voting closed 6

Hahahaha

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"citizen insurrection"

Are you serious?

I'm sorry Swirls. I'm sure you're dead serious. It was Henry V at Agincourt. They'll be signing songs about it for ages.

Chortle.

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Voting closed 13

Look it up - people went to jail

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One group was controlling the organization and illegally using properties and vehicles for personal gain. They wouldn't release records that they were legally required to, and wouldn't hold votes and and didn't recognize new members.

One person called the IRS and BOOM it was over.

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Voting closed 2

I always thought it was an urban legend...

...but having seen vintage campaign buttons & posters on offer at e-bay and on Pinterest, I have to say it’s true: The Nixon re-election campaign used or, at least allowed to be used, the following slogan’ “You Can’t Lick Our Dick”. Supposedly supporters of a certain age remained completely oblivious to the double entendre and proudly stuck bumper stickers with the slogan on their vehicles.

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Voting closed 5

On the other side, down in

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On the other side, down in New York City someone in the McGovern campaign ordered "Queens for McGovern" and "McGovern for Queens" buttons. Yes, that's a part of New York City, but still poor wording. (We lived in Queens, and my father grabbed one of each, not to wear but for his collection.)

So, yes, mistakes happen; I'm prepared to believe "we weren't thinking, we're sorry" from whoever ordered that card, but that doesn't make it a harmless mistake.

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Voting closed 6

Tragic Limits of Language

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I'm told the Inuit People up North have several words for snow.
It's really too bad that English is so limited, that a color for a snowy Christmas must also be the same word denoting race.
Imagine if there were precise words for each intention and each meaning.
It would liberate us in so many ways.
Miscommunication wouldn't be so easy. Misundertanding wouldn't be probable.

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Voting closed 9

Yes it's also tragic that the

Yes it's also tragic that the color of snow isn't, like, mauve or teal or something that would remove the possibility of "confusion", but here we are, in the real world, where snow is white and words sometimes have more than one meaning.

Somehow, most of us (excluding, obviously, the Dorchester Historical Society) are capable of looking at a phrase like "White Dorchester" and considering whether it might be taken more than one way.

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Voting closed 11

Time and Place

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The mistake was innocent, but the substitution of Christmas, a time of year, was replaced by a place, so I'm a little surprised that they didn't see this as a problem since it really don't make sense. Why wouldn't it just be "...Christmas in Dorchester?" Did they not want to use Christmas?

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Voting closed 7