After the N-word, the P-word

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"But only Pakistanis should be allowed to say it," adds Adeel, 17.

Ask them about the historical significance of the word and they look blank. But they have strong views on how the word is used and by whom.

Ahsan, 15, says the P-word could be classed as racist if used by anyone else, including other Asians. Last year filmmaker Navdeep Kandola was forced to change the name of his work from Paki Slag after Screen Yorkshire threatened to pull funding and criticism from West Yorkshire Police.

But, in a further complicated twist, that is exactly how some non-Pakistani Asians are using it - as a term of abuse.

Sixteen-year-old Dinaz, who
is of Bangladeshi origin, says at his school in Ilford Bangladeshis and Indians don't use the P-word, although their Pakistani peers do.

"It's accepted for Pakistanis to use it," he says, and they use it in a similar fashion to how rappers use the N-word.

Bonding word

John Ayto, author of the Oxford Dictionary of Slang, says it's just another example of how trying to control usage of a word can backfire.

The modern usage of something like the P-word can be seen as a "bonding device", he suggests, without taboos. So, will the P-word eventually find its way into mainstream conversation? continues here

Editorial : If a multiracial society were a good thing would we need to place restriction upon anything, lest of all language, yet it seems in order to enforce this social engineering experiment, things once taken for granted, such as freedom of thought and expression must go by the wayside.

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