Why is "Jewfro" offensive?

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I don't want to assume, but it's kinda hard...
I don't want to assume, but it's kinda hard...
Originally Posted by Phoenix
I don't know what you're assuming, but I'd say it's a combination of the same reason someone with 3c/4a hair who's rocking a very defined twist-out shouldn't be getting compliments on their "wild afro" and the fact that identifying anyone's appearance with their religion in slang is just not cool. I would NOT be happy to have my hair called a "Jewfro," especially since I get my curls both from my Jewish father and my gentile grandma. I wouldn't want to be told I have a "Jew nose" either. (I have a small nose, so nobody will, but the point is, it's a terribly stupid thing to say.) Does that explain things?
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I've never heard that expression but looked it up in Urban Dictionary. Yes, it's offensive.
I don't want to assume, but it's kinda hard...
Originally Posted by Phoenix
I don't know what you're assuming, but I'd say it's a combination of the same reason someone with 3c/4a hair who's rocking a very defined twist-out shouldn't be getting compliments on their "wild afro" and the fact that identifying anyone's appearance with their religion in slang is just not cool. I would NOT be happy to have my hair called a "Jewfro," especially since I get my curls both from my Jewish father and my gentile grandma. I wouldn't want to be told I have a "Jew nose" either. (I have a small nose, so nobody will, but the point is, it's a terribly stupid thing to say.) Does that explain things?
Originally Posted by wild_sasparilla
Those situations don't seem parallel at all.

Do Jewish people refer to their own hair (when kinky) as a jewfro? Or is it IYO slang mainly gentiles use?
I don't want to assume, but it's kinda hard...
Originally Posted by Phoenix
I don't know what you're assuming, but I'd say it's a combination of the same reason someone with 3c/4a hair who's rocking a very defined twist-out shouldn't be getting compliments on their "wild afro" and the fact that identifying anyone's appearance with their religion in slang is just not cool. I would NOT be happy to have my hair called a "Jewfro," especially since I get my curls both from my Jewish father and my gentile grandma. I wouldn't want to be told I have a "Jew nose" either. (I have a small nose, so nobody will, but the point is, it's a terribly stupid thing to say.) Does that explain things?
Originally Posted by wild_sasparilla
Those situations don't seem parallel at all.

Do Jewish people refer to their own hair (when kinky) as a jewfro? Or is it IYO slang mainly gentiles use?
Originally Posted by Phoenix
No, we don't. It's gentile slang used to peg someone different. Offensive due to intention.

And okay, sorry, I guess I picked the wrong attempt at a parallel, but I was just choosing a smaller, "weak" reason to come first - too many papers lately. Wrong terminology is annoying, you gotta admit.
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Well, I'm half-Jewish, and I use it whenever applicable. Doesn't bother me at all.
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Well, I'm half-Jewish, and I use it whenever applicable. Doesn't bother me at all.
Originally Posted by ninja dog
I'm fully Jewish and I joke about my friends having jewfros. It's kind of part of the culture. When you're with other jews it's okay to joke around about that. But I also use "jewfro" around non-jewish people and no one gets offended.

Maybe I'm sheltered but I've never found it offensive.
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I always think of the term whenever Kyle on South Park takes off his hat.
Huh, that's interesting - I know my Jewish friends with higher hairtypes (one is 3c, I identified it, yay! haha) would never want to have their hair called "Jewfro." My experience with the word has not been with Jewish people joking around about it, though you can joke about anything and I can see it. I've only ever heard a gentile use the word...and it was not with a positive tone.

Depends on your experiences, I guess.
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I have a few Jewish friends, one is a guy the other two are girls. They frequently refer to their hair as a jewfro just as my african american friend refers to hers as an afro or "fro."

Maybe its okay within the culture?
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I don't want to assume, but it's kinda hard...
Originally Posted by Phoenix
I don't know what you're assuming, but I'd say it's a combination of the same reason someone with 3c/4a hair who's rocking a very defined twist-out shouldn't be getting compliments on their "wild afro" and the fact that identifying anyone's appearance with their religion in slang is just not cool. I would NOT be happy to have my hair called a "Jewfro," especially since I get my curls both from my Jewish father and my gentile grandma. I wouldn't want to be told I have a "Jew nose" either. (I have a small nose, so nobody will, but the point is, it's a terribly stupid thing to say.) Does that explain things?
Originally Posted by wild_sasparilla
i thought that was a really good example actually.
I have a few Jewish friends, one is a guy the other two are girls. They frequently refer to their hair as a jewfro just as my african american friend refers to hers as an afro or "fro."

Maybe its okay within the culture?
Originally Posted by CurlyHairedFarmer
i dont know how to do multiple quotes within one post so bare with me.

i think that has alot to do with it too. kind of like if anyone who wasnt black came up to me and said, "wow look at that headful of nappy hair!" id be like but there have been many occasions when ive called my own hair nappy. like right now, my hair is nappy as hell, i havent brushed it in 3 days...
It's offensive towards both Blacks and Jews. Offensive to Blacks because it takes a Black hair type/style (which was important as a symbol of racial pride and self-awakening) and appropriates it by another culture and also uses it as slang and in a derogatory manner. I hear people all the time using the word "afro" in a negative way - I cannot stand hearing or seeing people with so-called 2, 3a or 3b-type hair saying "My hair looks awful - it's such an afro" (used to happen on the hair board all the time) It's offensive to Jews because it implies hair grading within the Jewish group - certain Jews have "jewfros" (which is usually not a compliment) and others have "nicer" types of hair.
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It's offensive towards both Blacks and Jews. Offensive to Blacks because it takes a Black hair type/style (which was important as a symbol of racial pride and self-awakening) and appropriates it by another culture and also uses it as slang and in a derogatory manner. I hear people all the time using the word "afro" in a negative way - I cannot stand hearing or seeing people with so-called 2, 3a or 3b-type hair saying "My hair looks awful - it's such an afro" (used to happen on the hair board all the time) It's offensive to Jews because it implies hair grading within the Jewish group - certain Jews have "jewfros" (which is usually not a compliment) and others have "nicer" types of hair.
Originally Posted by Amneris
Good explanation, I totally get it. I thought as much but wasn't able to put it in words. (at least not as clearly)
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I hope this doesn't offend anyone... but I had no idea what a gentile was so I looked it up. Right under "a person who is not Jewish, esp. a Christian" it says "a heathen or pagan." I found this amusing.

UNTIL I looked up heathen because I thought maybe it could have a different meaning other than what I had always used it for - a bratty kid. I never new a heathen was someone who was "an unconverted individual of a people that do not acknowledge the god of the bible; a person who is neither a Jew, Christian, or Muslim; pagan" and yet also "uncultured or uncivilized." I'm not a pagan, but that irks me.
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Wow, havent heard that term in decades.

My older brother and his friends (all Jewish) were in High School in the late 70s and all those with textured hair wore it big, as was the style. It was commonly refered to as a JewFro.

I take no offense to it.... but truly, anything can be offensive said in an intentionally nasty tone or context.

I have friends of many races, ethnicities and sexual persuations. And, I agree, there are some things that generally can only be said from one "insider" to another. But I think the relationship and the context are what make something appropriate or not.

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I have a few Jewish friends, one is a guy the other two are girls. They frequently refer to their hair as a jewfro just as my african american friend refers to hers as an afro or "fro."

Maybe its okay within the culture?
Originally Posted by CurlyHairedFarmer
i dont know how to do multiple quotes within one post so bare with me.

i think that has alot to do with it too. kind of like if anyone who wasnt black came up to me and said, "wow look at that headful of nappy hair!" id be like but there have been many occasions when ive called my own hair nappy. like right now, my hair is nappy as hell, i havent brushed it in 3 days...
Originally Posted by subbrock
This seems like something where you have to know your audience. I would never use this term, though. I agree with Subbrock's example--my father in law has said to me "Hey Nappy-head"--while he was just kidding and not being malicious (and this term is harmless), I did not find it funny at all. It's subjective. Someone else would have laughed that off, probably.
This is the first I've heard of that expression. It sounds like a racial slur to me.
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Wow, havent heard that term in decades.

My older brother and his friends (all Jewish) were in High School in the late 70s and all those with textured hair wore it big, as was the style. It was commonly refered to as a JewFro.

I take no offense to it.... but truly, anything can be offensive said in an intentionally nasty tone or context.

I have friends of many races, ethnicities and sexual persuations. And, I agree, there are some things that generally can only be said from one "insider" to another. But I think the relationship and the context are what make something appropriate or not.

You know when your being hated on.
Originally Posted by rudeechick
Good post, and I think the bolded is definitely valid. My sister and I used to try to make our hair a nice afro (we used "afro" as the style in a positive manner--others introduced us to the term "jewfro" later). I could never make my 2/3 hair into an acceptable version, but my sister had a stronger mix of 3a,b&c, and she did the style proud . My first reaction to this topic was that there was nothing offensive to me about it, but I do believe it all depends on the intent when it is said...
I think it can be offensive for all the reasons stated, or it could be OK. All depends on speaker and intent. I've used the term about my own hair. Now that I am comfortable with my hair and my appearance and I am not trying to measure myself against women I see on TV, it's just descriptive to me. I wouldn't use it in a room full of strangers, because it is a little sensitive. I guess "nappy" is a good analogy.
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