> [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Rex May

> "African-American" is a magnificently idiotic term.  I once 
> heard somebody on NPR talking 
> about the racial makeup of South Africa  they said that 80% 
> or some such percentage of 
> the population was African-American.  Whoever was talking had 
> had it drilled into them that 
> the only acceptable term for a person of the Negroid race is 
> "African-American."
> If Ian Smith had immigrated to the US, what would you call 
> him?  When Eldridge Cleaver 
> immigrated to Algeria, did he become an African-American-African?
> Ethnic terms are so politically charged, they can become very 
> ridiculous.  I remember when 
> it was decided to call Lieberman a Jewish-American on that 
> same pattern.  I haven't heard 
> Mormon-American or Catholic-American yet, but I suppose I will.
> Me, I'm just a Redneck-American.

Me, Aussie trapped in American citizenship.

> As for names of things being sexed or not, clearly sometimes 
> sex is relevant, and 
> sometimes it's not.  A planned language should be able to 
> easily make the distinction or 
> not, depending on the case.

Yes.  One place where it's really important is with animals.  It may
not seem to be a big deal but a large portion of the world is still
agricultural and the sex of farm animals is a big issue to those who
raise them for a living.  For other uses as with professions it's
generally not important what sex the person is.