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’Kassenbon’ means racism in German

 Language Learning Forum : Cultural Experiences in Foreign Languages (Topic Closed Topic Closed) Post Reply
26 messages over 4 pages: 13 4  Next >>
Serpent
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 Message 9 of 26
13 April 2015 at 2:43pm | IP Logged 
I agree, but finding a suitable wording can help a lot with processing an experience and having it acknowledged.
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Kronos
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 Message 10 of 26
13 April 2015 at 2:46pm | IP Logged 
mitsos wrote:
reached the cashier payed for the bottle got my change back and
then the cashier started babbling about something. I could not understand a word he
was saying.Finally I figured out he was asking me if I wanted the reciept -
'Kassenbon' in German.I got puzzled for a second-why did he have to ask and not give
it right a way along with the change.

That is completely normal. If you buy just one or two items cashiers will often ask politely if you want the receipt, "Brauchen Sie den Kassenbon?" You can either say no thanks or yes and take it, it doesn't matter.

Maybe one should mention that nowadays Germany has so many immigrants, people of foreign descent and travelers that in many supermarkets they are actually in the majority among customers, and sometimes even among cashiers. I have never witnessed a cashier making fun of any customer for whatever reason - they would not want to risk getting fired anyway.

So better think twice before you file a complaint. What you met were probably just stupid people; it is also not entirely clear that they were making fun of you (though it may seem so) and not of something else you didn't understand. I have been a number of times in situations where I thought people were laughing at me, but on close inspection I realized that in most cases they were not and I had misinterpreted their behavior.

Edited by Kronos on 13 April 2015 at 2:48pm

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Cthulhu
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 Message 11 of 26
13 April 2015 at 2:58pm | IP Logged 
Serpent wrote:
Cthulhu wrote:
More likely, the old man made a stupid joke, and the cashier laughed because
that's what people in minimum wage service jobs do when customers make stupid jokes, but of course we'll never
know because I wasn't there and you couldn't understand what was being said.

Plenty of stupid jokes are racist or xenophobic.

Also, racism is more than just "making fun of the skin colour". It's making any lazy assumptions based on someone's
race, especially when you're in a position of power or consider yourself to be. And cashiers only feel like that when
there's a "potential criminal" out there.


Of course racism is more than that, I never suggested otherwise, but what lazy assumptions about race were made
here? Did they assume the OP couldn't understand German because he's not "Aryan" (Something most Germans
wouldn't do in my experience), or did they assume he couldn't understand German because he BLATANTLY couldn't
understand German?

And yes, stupid jokes can be racist or xenophobic, but they can also be about the weather, or about the
inconvenience of being stuck waiting at the checkout for whatever reason. If I had a dollar for every time I made a
joke about some jerk with 18 items in the 10 item or less line, I wouldn't be wasting my time on the internet; if that
jerk happens to be of a different race, that doesn't make me a racist.

My point is just that the OP really doesn't know what was going on, but they're assuming the worst and so many
people are reinforcing that interpretation regardless of the consequences.

Edited by Cthulhu on 13 April 2015 at 2:59pm

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Serpent
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 Message 12 of 26
13 April 2015 at 3:00pm | IP Logged 
mitsos wrote:
I was holding a bottle of water which I did not set to the conveyor belt and put a separator bar (that thingy used to to separate one customer's shopping from another's) in front of it as I have should.I did not think it was necessary at the time-I got only one product afterall which I was holding in my hands.

This is not just about you though. Sounds like the person was hinting that you were preventing him from putting his own purchases on the conveyor belt. It's entirely plausible to me that he channelled out his frustration in a derogatory way and I'm not excusing him, but to me this is exactly the fine line between not being accepted as you are and needing to adapt.
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Iversen
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 Message 13 of 26
13 April 2015 at 3:09pm | IP Logged 
It is fairly obvious that the old man was rude and the cashier may have joined in. It is also fairly obvious that this example of rudeness doesn't have to be racism. But unfortunately it is also fairly obvious that the linguistic aspect of this thread is minimal, and HTLAL is a forum for discussions about languages and language learning.
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Serpent
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 Message 14 of 26
13 April 2015 at 3:17pm | IP Logged 
Cthulhu wrote:
Of course racism is more than that, I never suggested otherwise, but what lazy assumptions about race were made here?

My point is just that the OP really doesn't know what was going on, but they're assuming the worst and so many
people are reinforcing that interpretation regardless of the consequences.
I was referring to the other comment mostly. The lazy assumption is that the person is uncultured and lacks "proper manners" because they're not a German. Discrimination is often just a lack of the benefit of doubt that anyone who "passes" will get. It could totally be a microaggression.
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patrickwilken
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 Message 15 of 26
13 April 2015 at 10:46pm | IP Logged 
Funnily, I was at the MediaMarkt (an electronics store) in Berlin today to buy an LED lightbulb. As I was going to pay I put my bank card in the card reader a little early and the supervisor standing behind the cashier (apparently the cashier was being trained) told me in what I thought was a fairly condescending way that I should have waited until I was told my the card reader to put the card in. OK. Then as I was leaving they asked me if I wanted a receipt, and I said no, but the supervisor obviously thought I really should take it, so I then said yes, and I could hear laughter after I left.

But you know what? The damn lightbulb didn't work when I got home, so I really glad I have a receipt and am going to return it tomorrow. :)

-----------

As an aside I do think Germany has a fair amount of racism, some of it relatively subtle, some not, but I don't think this is any more than say Greece (Golden Dawn anyone?) or many other countries in Europe (or for that matter most parts of the World).

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nikolic993
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 Message 16 of 26
13 April 2015 at 11:55pm | IP Logged 
patrickwilken wrote:
As an aside I do think Germany has a fair amount of racism, some of it relatively subtle, some not, but I don't think this is any more than say Greece (Golden Dawn anyone?) or many other countries in Europe (or for that matter most parts of the World).
I would say that nationalism and religionism are more prevalent in Europe than racism.


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