7 Childhood Expressions With Surprisingly Controversial Origins

7 Childhood Expressions With Surprisingly Controversial Origins

We've all used at least one of these phrases.
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Words and expressions go in and out of use throughout the decades, and sometimes even centuries. Demographics can shape the meaning of expressions, as well as who uses them regularly. However, sometimes they become so widespread and over time, people forget or are never taught what they actually mean.

As a child, we hear and use many expressions, of which we probably never knew the origin. Below are seven expressions that might surprise, and even alarm, you with their history.

1. Eenie Meenie Miney Moe

We all know the children’s rhyme that goes: “Eenie, meenie, miney, moe / Catch a tiger by the toe / If he hollers let him go / Eenie, meenie miney, moe.” Did you know, though, that its origin is less friendly and inoffensive, replacing “tiger” with “n***er”? I would think twice before teaching my future child that rhyme.

2. Uppity

Today, we call someone “uppity” if they are acting in a way that we view as arrogant or “self-important.” Originally, the term was used to describe Black Americans who “didn't know their socioeconomic place.” Although the term was first used to describe other black individuals within the community, racist Southerners quickly adopted it.

3. Peanut Gallery

We definitely used the phrase when someone said something that we did not want to hear. The phrase came from what was considered the worst seating in theatres, often where “many black people sat during the era of Vaudeville.”

4. Hip Hip Hooray!

I was surprised by this one, too. According to Business Insider, the “hip hip” part of the phrase may have originated from 19th century antisemitic demonstrations in Germany, known as the Hep Hep Riots. There is no current way to confirm whether that is true, but it is important to keep in mind and consider the next time you get excited.

5. Sold Down The River

The phrase that is now used when someone betrays you was once more literal and more disturbing than many people realize. During the era of slavery, “misbehaving slaves” were sent down the Mississippi river by their masters to experience harsher conditions on Mississippi plantations.

6. I got gypped!

The phrase is closely linked to people of Romani descent, who are still frequently derogatorily referred to as “Gypsies.” A prominent stereotype that Romani encounter is people believing that they are “sly and cunning thieves.” Therefore, using the popular phrase when you feel that you were "robbed" is at the least done in poor taste, and at the most, outrageously offensive.

7. Hooligan

The word that is still used in an unflattering and often derogatory manner today has its origins with discriminatory behavior toward an Irish family that was known for “overt drunkenness.” It is thought to come from the Irish surname “Houlihan”, and was often used against Irish people as a whole to characterize them as “lawless drunks.”

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Austin Alexander Burridge, Volunteer Advocate, Shares 3 Great Reasons to Volunteer and Help Others

Austin Alexander Burridge is an avid academic who studies Environmental Science at Winona State University and believes that work in the service of others is a key pillar to personal development.

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Sometimes it's easy for someone to adopt a "me, me, me" attitude. While focusing on oneself, a person may feel nice in the moment, but serving and helping others will bring lasting benefits. While there are many great reasons to serve and help others, there are three universal truths that resonate with volunteers around the globe.

Austin Alexander Burridge's 3 Reasons to Volunteer:

1. Accomplishment

Often, people fall into a trap of focusing on themselves when they are feeling down. Maybe someone did not get a job they wanted. Or perhaps a person gets dumped by an expected lifelong companion. Maybe someone feels they have underachieved after looking at Facebook and seeing great things a high school classmate has accomplished. When feeling down, helping others is a proven way to improve one's mood and attitude, and it can provide a sense of pride and accomplishment. The act of giving to those in need is an inherently good action and leaves people with a wonderful feeling of joy.

2. Gratitude

One can become more appreciative of life by serving others that have less. Whether volunteering at a soup kitchen, visiting the elderly at an assisted living center, or helping families after a natural disaster, service enables people to be grateful for what they have. Seeing people who have fewer advantages, especially those who are spirited and thankful for small things, allows one to realize just how fortunate he/she is in life.

3. Friendships

Volunteering is a great way to build meaningful friendships, not only with other volunteers but also with those who are served. One of the most profound and fascinating aspects of these relationships is how volunteers will learn from those served and vice versa. As these special bonds are built, they lead to impactful connections that last for years to come.

Of course, these are just a few reasons to volunteer and serve others. One can never go wrong by helping others as opposed to merely focusing on oneself. Volunteering invariably and inevitably contributes to personal growth, development, and satisfaction.

About Austin Alexander Burridge: Helping others has been of paramount importance to Austin, and as a part of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA), Austin gave back to the community around him. He also has participated in annual peanut butter drives, The Minnesota Sandwich Project for the Homeless and collected canned goods for local food shelters. Additionally, Austin has a passion for the environment, which he pursued when visiting the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador, and the Amazon Rain Forest while studying at the School of Environment Studies, which investigates ecological systems and their sustainability

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Supporting Late-Term Abortion Is Actually The Opposite Of Feminism

Feminism is about gender equality and women supporting women- so shouldn't we support the unborn women of tomorrow?

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Before you read this, if you are someone who feels strongly that abortions are the "right" choice and that supporting late-term abortions is a step for woman anywhere, I do not suggest you read this article. However, I do want to write that I support conditional abortions- situations where the birth can kill the mother or where conception occurred because of rape. If someone rapes you, that is not okay by any means, and a baby conceived of rape can be terminated by the mother to avoid PTSD, anxiety, depression, panic attacks, and any other mental health diagnoses. Of course, if a woman can bring a baby into the world to keep or give up for adoption, even if it was the product of rape, she should seek life for the innocent child rather than death. And what a rape victim chooses to do is neither here nor there- and it damn well is not anyone else's business.

So why should it be my business (or anyone's) if women have late-term abortions? Agreeing to murder out of convenience should not be societally accepted as okay. When the law passed in New York for late-term abortions, I did not picture 39-week pregnant women rushing to Planned Parenthood to abort their child because they got cold feet. I highly doubt that is the exact scenario for which the law went into effect for, and that was more so intended for women who did not realize they were pregnant and missed the time period to get a legal abortion.

Not that I support early-term abortion, because all abortion is the same regardless of when it happens during the pregnancy. Killing someone sooner rather than later does not make it less worse.

Excuses about how women are not ready to be mothers, do not have the financial means, would ruin their futures, they would get kicked out, lose their bodies, etc. are just that- excuses. Carrying a child for nine months might be an inconvenience, but killing someone will be on your conscience forever. If murders pleaded their motives to police as a way to justify what they did (excluding self-defense), what difference is it if a woman kills her unborn child?

Planned Parenthood might be taboo and have a stigma attached to it, but it does so much more than kill babies. Planned Parenthood is a place where girls can go to see OB/GYNO, get birth control, and learn about safe sex, protection, STDs, etc. Instead of stigmatizing it, young women should be encouraged to go to this institution for woman and feminism. Let high school health classes plan field trips there so that everyone becomes more educated on female health (boys included!). Female health education is very limited, especially in school, and many women feel that an abortion is their only way out, however, it's not. By becoming more educated, the rate of teen pregnancies can go down, as well as the need for abortions. Women educating other women should be the goal of Planned Parenthood, and abortions should be reserved for those who got raped or whose pregnancy cause death, health complications, etc.

Abortion might be giving women a choice- but who is giving the unborn babies a choice?

And of course the only way to 100% prevent pregnancy is abstinence, and if that is your choice then good for you, and if you choose to have sexual intercourse, good for you too. Be safe. No slut shaming here. Women need to continue supporting other women, regardless of their sex life. Women who have abortions are not "whores" and should not be labeled as such- they are just people whose biology reacted to another person's biology.

If you truly do not want to have a baby, please please please give it up for adoption and do not kill it. It did nothing wrong, and yeah, it might be a little inconvenient to be pregnant, especially if you are in school, but there are hundreds of thousands of people that would love nothing more than to raise your baby. Be a woman supporting other woman and give the gift of motherhood.

If you take away anything from this article it's this:



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