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Topic: "How do you know I’m NOT a mutant?!" (Topic Closed Topic Closed) Post ReplyPost New Topic
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John Byrne
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 5:25am | IP Logged | 1  

When I was about sixteen years old, the local cable company -- which had all of five channels! -- started carrying a French channel, which I started watching because it was the only place I could regularly see naked ladies on TV. However, my prurient interests led to some cultural awareness expansion, as I found people of all races and ethnicities speaking French. At first, after years of American television, is seemed somehow "wrong" to see a Black man (for example) speaking French, but very quickly I "got it" and began to consciously force myself to be aware of how different the the rest of the world was from my isolated experiences in Western Canada.

So if anyone asks, insist that, yes, naked ladies are educational!!

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Robert Cooke
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 5:54am | IP Logged | 2  

Man, JB, I forgot how funny you could be since I used to post regularly on the old board.

I remember a commercial a few years ago that kind of hit me like that where an asian woman was talking and had a really deep southern accent. Asian's I think have really bad stereotypes in the US. When I used to really be into Bruce Lee, I remember that was one of his greatest personal conflicts. You can see some of that in the movie they made about him "The Dragon". Now martial arts are a stereotype, so I don't know if he would feel if he helped much if he was alive. I think there is way too much misunderstanding about cultures and ethnicities in our country. We seem to refuse to recognize our own culture as well and expect all other palces to be the same or cater to us(which is probably why so many Americans traveling abroad are seen as arrogant).

You are probably fortunate to have a varied backround and have that insight. What effect do you think your parents had on you being from England? Do you feel like you are part of all of the countries youv'e lived in?

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Simon Matthew Park
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 5:55am | IP Logged | 3  

JB, that's an excellent point, and one that few men would dare to state publicly - Bravo, Sir!

One only has to look at the sterling example set by that noted educator Hugh Hefner to see the truth of your statement.

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Glenn Brown
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 6:21am | IP Logged | 4  

I attended an ethnically diverse middle school where I had several Asian friends of different backgrounds: Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese.  After a while of hanging out with them, I became adept at differentiating between different Asian groups by appearance alone.  The height of the cheekbone, the width of the nose, the angle and shape of the eye...all of those anatomical landmarks are distinguishable, even amongst people who tend to look alike upon casual glance.

It's the same way with people of African descent.  Ethiopians look completely different than Nigerians, as do Kenyans from Somalians.

Not trying to front on James' earlier question re differentiating between Asians by sight alone but the answer is yes, some people can.

clarification



Edited by Glenn Brown on 03 March 2006 at 6:22am
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John Byrne
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 7:04am | IP Logged | 5  

You are probably fortunate to have a varied backround and have that insight. What effect do you think your parents had on you being from England? Do you feel like you are part of all of the countries youv'e lived in?

****

Mostly I feel like an American (Southern Alberta, where I grew up, could turn into a State with very little effort), but every once in a while there are small reminders of my "mixed background". For example, people have occasionally asked me how I am able to capture the look of America in the 1930s and 40s so well, since, obviously, I did not live there. I tell them that (a) I have seen a lot of vintage movies and (b) mostly I just draw what I remember of England from my childhood. After the War, Great Britain was pretty much locked in the 40s until the cultural explosion of the 1960s.

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Troy Nunis
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 9:19am | IP Logged | 6  

Not trying to front on James' earlier question re differentiating between Asians by sight alone but the answer is yes, some people can.<<

The point is, while there could be a Korian Cheekbone or a Chineese eye or whathave you, as much as there is a Greek Nose, these can only make you THINK you know a differance, but not everyone in the group will have the features, and not everyone with the features will be of the group, it's not absolute, thus, you can't KNOW - you can just be educated to make good guesses which can still be wrong.

 

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Joe Zhang
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 9:30am | IP Logged | 7  

"You can tell a Japanese from a Korean by eyesight alone, eh?"

The two ethnicities have their own distinctive set of looks. But you would have to be really familiar with the region to tell them apart every time.

Also, body language communicates a great deal about the ethnicity, I think.


Edited by Joe Zhang on 03 March 2006 at 9:34am
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Glenn Brown
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 4:54pm | IP Logged | 8  

 Troy Nunis wrote:
The point is, while there could be a Korian Cheekbone or a Chineese eye or whathave you, as much as there is a Greek Nose, these can only make you THINK you know a differance, but not everyone in the group will have the features, and not everyone with the features will be of the group, it's not absolute, thus, you can't KNOW - you can just be educated to make good guesses which can still be wrong.

sigh...

No, the point is that all people of a particular ethnic background do NOT look alike and that there are differences in physical characteristics that, while subtle or indistinguishable upon casual glance, can be noticed by a trained or knowledgable eye.

Why try to split hairs?  The answer to the question posed about differentiating between a Japanese and a Korean is yes, some people can.  If nothing else, Asians certainly don't look alike to each other.

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James C. Taylor
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 5:00pm | IP Logged | 9  

No, Glenn, Troy pretty much stated my point. You may disagree with it, but Troy got it right.
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Glenn Brown
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 5:08pm | IP Logged | 10  

How can I disagree with something I said? 

You asked a question in an attempt to make a point, but received answers you didn't want to hear or didn't anticipate hearing.  Doesn't make the answers wrong.

Yes, some people can distinguish between different Asians by sight alone.  Doesn't make you a bad guy or ignorant or racist if you cannot. 

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James C. Taylor
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 5:13pm | IP Logged | 11  

 Glenn Brown wrote:
How can I disagree with something I said?

You may disagree with my point, but Troy got it right.

Now, do you understand what I said to you?

 Glenn Brown wrote:
Yes, some people can distinguish between different Asians by sight alone.

No. They can only guess. They can be a better guesser than others. There are characteristics which tend to show up one versus the other. But they can't know.
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Glenn Brown
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 5:21pm | IP Logged | 12  

James, this insufferable need you have to be right all of the time really gets old.

You win.  Everyone who thinks differently than you is wrong and you are right.

Happy now?

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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 5:32pm | IP Logged | 13  

Whenever I've been to Europe, most of the Europeans picked up that I was American before I even spoke a word. I'm trying to figure out if Asian-Americans stand differently or something.
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James C. Taylor
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 6:52pm | IP Logged | 14  

 Glenn Brown wrote:
James, this insufferable need you have to be right all of the time really gets old.

So does instant psychoanalysis of my motivation for doing things.

If I tire you, put me on your ignore list; then you'll never hear from me again.

(Of course, if you already have, then you won't have read this. Hmm.)
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Mike Norris
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 7:00pm | IP Logged | 15  


 QUOTE:
Whenever I've been to Europe, most of the Europeans picked up that I was American before I even spoke a word. I'm trying to figure out if Asian-Americans stand differently or something.

Maybe, Though my wife was once mistaken for Irish by some Irish women viisiting her workplace. Had a friend of Korean and Japanese decent who was addressed in Japanese by a couple of tourists at Disneyland. She had no clue what they were saying though.

 



Edited by Mike Norris on 03 March 2006 at 7:01pm
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Chris Durnell
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 7:12pm | IP Logged | 16  

I have some friends who can tell the difference between different Asian nationalities.  Not perfectly, but within 80-90%.  A white guy is best at it, but the others are Asian.  When I lived briefly in Europe, I noticed it was lot easier to tell the Nordics, Latins, and Slavics from each other than I could in Chicago.

Anyway, back to the issue of anti-mutant hysteria - I remember a scene from Gruenwald/Dwyer's run where the new Captain America and Battlestar hunted down a porcupine power guy because of the Mutant Registration Act.  He claimed he got the powers in an accident.  I'm sure they might be other instances of the same.

I personally don't find anti-mutant hysteria to be weird.  It's one thing that random accidents give people super-powers.  It's another thing to be told by another group:  we are replacing you.  Random super power guys will remain random and keep to a low population.  A new breed of humanity however may someday outnumber you, or at minimum become a large enough minority that their super powers allow them to rule over non-powered humans, or "cheat" the system.  The Hellfire Club certainly did - using their various mutant powers to gain economic and political powers.  How many business rivals did Emma Frost destroy simply because she could read their minds?

No one wants to be reglected to an inferior status, and that is the fear humanity has.  One does not need to be a bigot to have that fear.  Fear, not hate, is what motivated the hysteria for most.

Something rarely mentioned in these discussions is that mutants are not just a metaphor of oppressed minorities.  They are also metaphors of danger.  They were the "Children of the Atom," remember?  What else do we associate with the Atom, especially in the 1960's - 1980's?  Mutants are also a metaphor for the possible extinction of humanity.  And Magneto and the Brotherhood, of course, are metaphors of bigotry and racial supremacy themselves, not of oppressed minorities.

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John Byrne
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 8:37pm | IP Logged | 17  

Human mutation, as played in the Marvel Universe, is exactly the kind of thing that would set off all kinds of prejudices. This is something Chris and I addressed in "Days of Future Past", twenty five years ago. Recall, Senator Kelly's campaign slogan for the year in which he ran for president was "It's 1984 -- Do You Know WHAT Your Children Are?" When I coined that phrase, I thought it summed up the whole thing perfectly.

See, if two White racists have a child together, it is highly unlikely (tho not impossible, especially in America) that child will turn out to be Black. But mutation can happen to anybody. And, double-edged sword that it is, two mutants are not absolutely guaranteed to produce a mutant, either. Likely, but not certain.

Mutation is insidious. A "normal" couple can have a child, raise it to its teen years and suddenly -- wham! It grows wings, or starts firing eye beams, or turns to living metal. This is, in fact, one of the most insightful parts of the whole mythos, the notion that the mutation kicks in at puberty. To repeat the similie, it is unlikely (tho not impossible) that your kid can grow up White and, when the hormones kick in, suddenly turn out to be Black. (There was an episode of LAW&ORDER which addressed the latter scenario, but not as something common!)

Mutants are a variant on cuckoos. The difference is, the "cuckoo's eggs" come from birds that are not cuckoos.

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John Byrne
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 8:39pm | IP Logged | 18  

And Magneto and the Brotherhood, of course, are metaphors of bigotry and racial supremacy themselves, not of oppressed minorities.

****

Exactly. No accident that Stan and Jack had Magneto and his cronies use Nazi trappings in an early issue. The Brotherhood of Evil Mutants was not meant to be seen as "freedom fighters". That was the X-Men. The Brotherhood saw themselves as "evil", and had no problem with that characterization.

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Rob Hewitt
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 8:56pm | IP Logged | 19  

But how do the people in the Marvel Universe know which superheroes are mutants? Unless they segregate themselves, of course.
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Ray Brady
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Posted: 03 March 2006 at 11:38pm | IP Logged | 20  

The mutants tend to have X's on their belt buckles.
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Emery Calame
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Posted: 04 March 2006 at 12:12am | IP Logged | 21  

Well mutants have apparently been found to have a common gene that shows up and sometimes "activates". I think it has been dubbed the x-factor.

In the Marvel universe you might have been born a human with an "advanced" mutation trait that gives you super powers like "super reflexes" and the ability to see into the infa-red band but you'd still not be a mutant because you don't match up with one of the High Evolutionary's definitions. Or maybe they'd call you pseudo mutant or a "type two" mutant.

On the other hand you could be born a mutant with two too many teeth in your lower ja, lumps on the back of your head, and the power to turn four square inches of your left butt cheek "sort of blue" and the sentinals STILL want to shoot restraining goop on you and haul you off to some secret mutant prison because you have the x-factor.



Edited by Emery Calame on 04 March 2006 at 12:13am
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Mike Norris
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Posted: 04 March 2006 at 8:36pm | IP Logged | 22  

I actually have an extra vertebra in my spine. I trust you guys to keep it  secret from the Mutant hunting Sentinals.   

Mike (aka Taller-than-he-would-be Man)

 

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Jim Yingst
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Posted: 04 March 2006 at 8:51pm | IP Logged | 23  

Mike, you can probably increase your sales by changing your name to Xtra-Vertebra Man.
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Emery Calame
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Posted: 04 March 2006 at 10:18pm | IP Logged | 24  

Mike if you are lucky it's just Kree genetic manipulation.
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Mike Norris
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Posted: 04 March 2006 at 10:20pm | IP Logged | 25  

I figured the "X" would draw Sentinals and mutie haters like honey draws flies. Trying to keep it on the down low. I've heard of X-Ray techs who've been "questioned"

Mike

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