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After a while in the US, I was able to pick up vocabulary better with UK shows. They seem to favor different words and expressions. I stayed away from Scottish though as I can't understand a lot of it. I watch a lot of TV now via Netflix and it has became my tutorial for English. I don't know if it is available where you are. Of course, It also helps to live in the US or UK so that you have to use your English.

Also, I've noticed that the better English speakers are the ones who immitate by watching a lot of English television. As for writing, I make sure in writing that I'm using the right word so I use a dictionary a lot. My speech is simple in comparison but I'm able to get by great now.

I have my computer launch flash card program when it boots to remind me to expand my vocabulary and practice a bit. I also use howjsay to learn pronunciation of words. I've yet to find a word that wasn't on there. However, the guy sounds British if you are going for or live in US. I've not had a problem though. I've even went to the website to play the name of my medicine to a pharmacist and he said he didn't even know the correct pronunciation till then.

horrorvacui  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: America's struggle

I have trouble with things like synonyms so I try to make use of a thersaurus. I've not considered the strenght of words. That seems inspiring.

I also think non native speakers can actually become advantaged when it comes to testing on English. I'm told a lot of natives don't touch the basics for a while so it seems I did better than a lot in the standardized testing of English simply because it is fresh in my mind. If you hear me speak though my minor accent betrays that I wasn't born here.

That said, I struggle with idioms and colloquial expressions. I remember being confused with "pulling your leg". Living in the South East for a time, there is a lot of idioms and expressions. Seems like most of what southerners say is idioms that make no sense to non native speakers and probably even Northerners. I also think it helps that US movies are so prolific and immitation goes a long ways. Just don't trust the depictions of southerners. The sound is way off and over dumbified.

Also, I started watching a lot of UK tv shows. It seems to help me since they seem to have a wider use of vocabulary. They also seem to have less idioms.

horrorvacui  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: America's struggle

I didn't call you a racist. I also didn't dismiss those deaths. The casaulties I'm talking about are the losses in the war on words. I just want to convince you that unifying everyone is the goal. I don't think you are anyone is intentionally alienating everyone in these dicusions. I'm only offering some sort of way to change a stagnant dialog. I want the dialog to move from angry blaming from both sides and into honest discussions that will inact real change. If we can't get away from the confrontational attitude that is like what we are having here, we won't bridge the gap between the sides. We need to move towards common goals in order to unify more people. If we extend these issues to minorities of all kinds we can make more headway.

For example, LBGT, even atheists, and of course other races other than blacks have similar oppression. If we unite all these fronts by generalizing the discussion to those groups, we can inact change that protects all people from discrimination. Blacks may well be one the most prosecuted in the current system. However, there is a lot of other goups experiencing similar plights that we could leverage to actually win this fight. Inclusive discussions will bring more momentum.

Complex issues require complex solutions. We could better combat police brutality and stave away all deaths by police brutality. We could allow equal pay and opportunity in the workplace for all minorities. Banding together gives more minds via voters, protestors, and activists collectively working towards the problem that is public perception. Stop being confrontational and instead be forgiving and unifying.

Lasltly, you are inferring a lot from what I'm saying that I don't intend. I don't know your motivations or if you view me in some way that is clouding your view of my comments. I honestly think you can agree with me but I've said something that offended you. In that case, I'm sorry and hopefully the message is clearer if you hear it from someone else MLK:

    Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.
horrorvacui  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: America's struggle

I don't think there will be progress if we don't get the mainstream whites to agree. The truely worst racist is the one who knows there are inequalities and wants to continue such a system. But they are not the biggest danger to progress. The ones who don't care because it doesn't really affect them are the ones we need to win over.

I don't think we have as much progress towards change as some people suggest. Things are far worse for people who are different in this country. To convince the mainstream we need to change the dialog from "we are less lucky than whites" to "we can't get jobs because we are black". The former asks for sympathy; the latter asks for a solution. IT IS IMPORTANT to unite. I don't understand how that is so controversial as to warrant a response such as:

    You can be upset about it or you can accept it; the only person who cares is you.


    There is no other way to honestly have the discussion, and dishonest discussion is what has led to this boiling point.


    Comparisons will happen. Relatives are so much easier to discuss than absolutes. "Us v. Them" will happen. "We" are experiencing hardship because of "you."

sounds an aweful lot like some of the justifications for racism. I've heard a lot of the same arguments used to defend racist remarks about sterotyping a race. Yes comparisons are natural and sometimes justified. However, that is missing my point. My point isn't comparisons offer no merit. Instead they don't however, offer as much chance to unify people. If you go into peaceful negoations to end a war blaming the other side, the other side will be less inclined to end the war.

Both sides are viewing it as a war of words. Instead we should be convincing people there is no "Us" and "them". The shining example of what I want is MLK's I have a dream speech. He goes out of his way to include others. He of all should be an example of the dialog we use. I can't help but think you are standing in the way of progress if you disagree. Try looking at all the dialog on each side, from the view of both sides, and I think you'll see that it is not unlike what two enemies at war would say about each other. Wars end when peaceful dialog occurs between both sides or one side is destroyed or exhausted. In a war that hardly takes casualties, you only have peaceful dialog as a means to an end. Otherwise you are enlarging the gap between the sides, making the task of peacefully negotiating that much harder.

horrorvacui  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: America's struggle

I'm saying just clean the message up so as to not add any adversarial tones towards potential allys. That's it. I'm not doing a good job at though apparently.

horrorvacui  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: America's struggle

I don't think you get what I'm trying to say. I'm not saying anything about whites not experiencing hardship or blacks. I'm simply saying don't draw comparisons. Just state the hardships alone without any comparisons to others. I'm saying the hardships stand alone without the comparisons. I actually think we agree because it seems you are arguing my point up until you start so say stuff like "more" or quantifiers about hardship. Just state that blacks experience prejudice and hardship with the current system. Don't make it "whites" vs "blacks". Make it minorities vs racists and you may find more numbers on your side.

A lot of whites know and want to stop the systematic racism. We don't need the us vs them'ers though. It makes it harder to fight racism in general if you are also alienating people who are weary of the message you speak but angry at the system you fight. They could be your ally but you only make them neutral with unfair comparisons.

horrorvacui  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: America's struggle

I wouldn't take your word on it simply because you are self described as being hard to please. After all, you are biased when it comes to yourself.

However, after watching the video, pay your friend Theron a complement from a stranger. He is a great pianoist.

horrorvacui  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: America's struggle

I agree with you. The problem I'm trying to address is how we confront the public with the issue of racism. I think the message shouldn't draw comparisons with whites, as it adds an us vs them to the message. Instead, I think we should point out the hardships and stop there. I think nothing comes out of going farther.

For example, I was born in a country where my people have experienced genocide. I moved to the US with my surviving family. I was raised by my grandparents. My father died in the war and my mother giving birth. I've experienced ethic cleansing and racism at its worst. I can't but find myself at times drawing comparisons to my life and minorities. If I do that, I'd mostly see their problems as minor in comparison. Infact, I'm white as can be, and I'm been told by some that I'd have no clue what racism is like because I'm white. Those kind of messages almost alienated me and probably have others. I'm only saying don't draw comparisons or make it us vs them. Unite not alienate.

horrorvacui  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: America's struggle

Thanks, I'm not a native English speaker but I'm trying my best. Any other problems? I'd love to improve my writing and speaking.

I hope the redditors that are coming here are for similar reason as I am. I wanted to leave the terrible voting system behind. I was never censored by Pao or admins. Instead I was censored by all of the downvotes I was getting for having a differnet opinion.

Ironic that redditors are complaining about reddit inc's censorship whilst downvoting is a form of censorship. Combine subreddits and voting and you get a hivemind. If your comments don't agree with the hivemind, redditors will downvote you into oblivion instead of just ignoring you. Therefore, Reddit is designed to censor thoses with differing opinions.

I also found better discussion and less hate in the comments on hubski.

horrorvacui  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: America's struggle

    I could tell pretty early on as a kid that the boys with freckles seemed to get better favor with the teachers.
I'm going to play devil's advocate and say perhaps you imagined there was an association between having freckles and increase favor of the teachers. How could you know the teacher's preferences without them confiding in you that they prefered freckles? My point is if you are not careful and lack proof, it is prejudice on your own part to think so poorly of the teachers as to believe they are swayed by the freckles.


    Luck is definitely a skin color.
I don't think I'd go that far. I feel it's a no brainer to say that minorities are often tasked with more work to get somewhere than someone who fits in with the majority. However, I feel it is off putting to freckleds (or any favoriable skin type) to say they were just lucky. Why? Well if you don't know their individual hardships you don't know how hard they worked to achieve success. Perhaps freckled boy has an abusive but rich father you are unaware of or some other unknown hardship. The point is telling the freckled boys they were lucky because they were freckled is in a way prejudice itself, and only alienates them if they are proud of their accomplishments. That is unless your goal is to be like some others who wish to drive a wedge between the different races.
horrorvacui  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: America's struggle

I think it is great we are trying to clean up racism and other issues involving race. However, lets not attach race to issues simply because the issue involves people of different races. Instead consider finding evidence before making statements condeming someone as racist. If we don't, I fear the issue will fade because the public won't listen if we cry wolf to many times.

I also think we are acting too defensive when someone challenges the issue as being about race. I feel like there is a potential danger in the way individuals are thinking about the racial issues. In the same way someone behaves racist towards one race, there exist equal potential to do the inverse.

Lastly lets not forget that the root of the problem is being different than those in postions of power. LBGT, black, asian, foreignor, gothic, or any other difference from the people in positions of power puts you at risk of experiencing prejudice and hatred from them.