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BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?

Richard Bridge 26 Sep 11 - 09:59 AM
Richard Bridge 26 Sep 11 - 10:00 AM
saulgoldie 26 Sep 11 - 10:11 AM
Lighter 26 Sep 11 - 10:50 AM
GUEST,999 26 Sep 11 - 10:52 AM
Musket 26 Sep 11 - 11:10 AM
GUEST,999 26 Sep 11 - 11:13 AM
McGrath of Harlow 26 Sep 11 - 11:20 AM
Musket 26 Sep 11 - 11:22 AM
Backwoodsman 26 Sep 11 - 11:28 AM
GUEST,leeneia 26 Sep 11 - 11:54 AM
Jeri 26 Sep 11 - 12:00 PM
Lighter 26 Sep 11 - 12:03 PM
BTNG 26 Sep 11 - 12:19 PM
McGrath of Harlow 26 Sep 11 - 12:30 PM
Little Hawk 26 Sep 11 - 12:36 PM
Paul Burke 26 Sep 11 - 01:00 PM
gnu 26 Sep 11 - 01:13 PM
Richard Bridge 26 Sep 11 - 01:36 PM
BTNG 26 Sep 11 - 02:16 PM
GUEST,999 26 Sep 11 - 02:40 PM
GUEST,999 26 Sep 11 - 02:47 PM
Rapparee 26 Sep 11 - 05:34 PM
GUEST,Mrr at work 26 Sep 11 - 05:39 PM
Little Hawk 26 Sep 11 - 06:13 PM
GUEST,999 26 Sep 11 - 06:14 PM
Little Hawk 26 Sep 11 - 06:16 PM
Dave the Gnome 26 Sep 11 - 06:39 PM
Stilly River Sage 26 Sep 11 - 07:02 PM
John on the Sunset Coast 26 Sep 11 - 07:36 PM
Rapparee 26 Sep 11 - 09:43 PM
BTNG 26 Sep 11 - 10:42 PM
Richard Bridge 26 Sep 11 - 11:59 PM
Richard Bridge 27 Sep 11 - 12:11 AM
GUEST,999 27 Sep 11 - 01:10 AM
Paul Burke 27 Sep 11 - 02:11 AM
Keith A of Hertford 27 Sep 11 - 03:23 AM
Richard Bridge 27 Sep 11 - 04:48 AM
Bonzo3legs 27 Sep 11 - 06:05 AM
GUEST,Jim Knowledge 27 Sep 11 - 07:15 AM
GUEST,Patsy 27 Sep 11 - 07:17 AM
MGM·Lion 27 Sep 11 - 08:00 AM
Rapparee 27 Sep 11 - 09:05 AM
Keith A of Hertford 27 Sep 11 - 09:15 AM
artbrooks 27 Sep 11 - 09:42 AM
John on the Sunset Coast 27 Sep 11 - 11:07 AM
autolycus 27 Sep 11 - 11:39 AM
Lighter 27 Sep 11 - 12:13 PM
Bert 27 Sep 11 - 12:24 PM
autolycus 27 Sep 11 - 12:28 PM
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Subject: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 09:59 AM

You must be fucking joking!

(this might be iffy - my first handmade blue clicky - )

Mind you it is the Daily Mail


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 10:00 AM

Hooray! It worked!


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: saulgoldie
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 10:11 AM

"Offensive" is relative. However, the terms are obviously Christian-centric. And how much of the world is Christian?

Saul


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Lighter
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 10:50 AM

I was told way back in the 1970s that these were "offensive." What that means is that if you think really, really hard about it, and ignore the fact that both are nothing but conventions, you might wonder whether somebody somewhere is or should be offended.

I've noticed, however, that both "BC" and "AD" have pretty much disappeared from American academic writing over the last twenty years or so. "BCE" and "CE" are now standard.

But still "offensive," if you get what I'm saying.

Perhaps we should date everything from the Big Bang of about 14,000,000,000 years ago. (or "BP" as anthropologists and paleontologists call it: "before the present").

But that would be "offensive" to Creationists, who would date everything from October 23, 4004 BC. (They're OK with AD and BC, though.)

The simplest thing, really, would be to assume that if it happened more than a few months ago, it just isn't important any more.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: GUEST,999
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 10:52 AM

We were using the terms Before Common Era and Common Era thirty years ago in various university courses I took. This ain't news, but few newspapers today specialize in news anymore, Richard. I don't mind the term. However, because it's already a nightmare to set up a doctor appointment, I can't see that it will streamline things.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Musket
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 11:10 AM

Ah well, two things here.

One is The Daily M*il have pointed out the BBC commissioning editor is a Muslim. Shock, horror!

The other is Bridge reading and quoting from The Daily M*il.

There concludes the case for the prosecution M'lud.

There has to be some arbitrary universal timeline and BC / AD or BCE / CE all point to the same mythical event point. Can't see how changing the wording without changing the date can help any concept of being offensive. Islam runs a dateline consistent with the coming of the Prophet for starters, and whilst I hear of weird idiots calling for a Caliph in The White House, not even those fundamentalists call for Rolex to bring out a new range?

It's a story to sell tomorrow's fish & chip wrappers I suppose. Just rather bemused to see such a self confessed lefty fall for it and give it further publicity.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: GUEST,999
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 11:13 AM

I understood from a few English friends that fish and chips are no longer allowed to be sold and wrapped in newspapers.

??


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 11:20 AM

The French tried doing something like this back in the days of the Revolution, dating things by the Era of Liberty, but it didn't really catch on.

So long as the years stay the same there's a built in reference to Christianity - and anyway I'd imagine that most people hearing the relatively unfamiliar CE and BCE would assume that meant "Christian Era" and "Before Christian Era".

I suspect that BC and AD will be with us for a long time. So will other dating systems, such as the Hebrew one - Happy New Year for the year 5572 on September 29th. (It's 1432 AH in the Islamic Calendar - and and 5111 in the Hindu Calendar...)


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Musket
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 11:22 AM

No, they aren't, you are quite right.

They are metaphorically wrapped as such, although the paper used these days is more greaseproof and can withstand the vinegar better!

The paper they use for the outer wrappings don't have to be plain though. A few enterprising companies are selling the shops paper that looks like newspaper, but assuming the ink is OK for foodstuff.

In any event, calling a newspaper "tomorrow's fish & chips" is a time honoured way of saying their stories will be replaced with different ones tomorrow so stop worrying.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 11:28 AM

I would never insult my own intelligence by reading 'The Daily Mail'.

Might as well read 'The Beano', it contains about the same amount of fact, and it's aimed at an audience with a somewhat higher IQ.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 11:54 AM

Something isn't offensive unless it's intended to offend.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Jeri
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 12:00 PM

THAT is 100% wrong.
People are offended by the stupidest things sometimes, things that are certainly not intended to offend. I knew a guy once who was offended by the Smurfs. Go figger...


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Lighter
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 12:03 PM

That used to be the case, before people found they could get air time by saying they were offended and that others should be offended too.

But it's vital to claim that other people should be offended. You won't get air time if you admit it's only you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: BTNG
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 12:19 PM

"people found they could get air time by saying they were offended and that others should be offended too."

apparently people can get air time here, on Mudcat, too. There are far more import ant things, in this world, to get wound up about than terminology than really means little no matter which way you put it.

it's that old saying, in action, again. If there wasn't something for people to get offended at, would they invent something?


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 12:30 PM

Something isn't offensive unless it's intended to offend.

Well, there is passing wind in public...

The point about whether things are rightly objected to as offensive, and that is whether they actually do cause reasonable offence. So, in this case and similar (Chrisrmas celebrations etc), "Do the traditional terms or practices actually cause offence to religious minorities?" - and generally the answer is, they do not. The objections tend to come from people who are not in reality offended but have an agenda of their own.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 12:36 PM

If I merely roll around, scream, and beat my fists on the floor over this latest OUTRAGE, will that suffice? ;-) Or should I engage in some concerted political action to overturn it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Paul Burke
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 01:00 PM

When they changed BC/AD to BCE/CE did they fix the Year Zero problem?

Anyway, they should change it from AD to GD, and from BC to CC#, pronenouced the Melodeon Year 100, or Bosca Ceoil Year 1897.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: gnu
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 01:13 PM

Yeah, well it's stardate -311264.13565449003 here right now. Catch up to the new times eh?


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 01:36 PM

Some clarification:


http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/reality-check-with-polly-curtis/2011/sep/26/1?fb=native


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: BTNG
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 02:16 PM

and then there's This


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: GUEST,999
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 02:40 PM

October 4 1582 was followed by 15 October 15, 1582.

And without a single flash card! Yippee.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: GUEST,999
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 02:47 PM

In other words,

We have found that Thursday, October 4, 1582 (Julian) was followed by Friday, October 15, 1582 (Gregorian)

Both from the www.

A fellow I knew in university explained to me the troubles he had digging into papers from the time of the Fr Rev due to the date change. He was doing his master's and he said it was not only difficult to work with but also a SOB to footnote his thesis.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Rapparee
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 05:34 PM

I'm starting a drive to completely redo the way we do the calendar. I think that it should start with 1945 (current reckoning) as year 0M. That's because that's the year I was born.

Dates before that will be designated "BM" (Before Me) and "AM (After Me). Dates occurring during my lifetime will be designated "M" (Me).
So the year that's called "1940" by current reckoning would become "5 BM", the year 1955 becomes "9 M" and there is nothing yet that can be called "AM".


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: GUEST,Mrr at work
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 05:39 PM

Not offensive necessarily, just outdated. There is no need for everyone to relate to the birth of a mythical savior who may or may not have existed in historical reality. But we do have a commonality to using what used to be annos domini (I personally consider 2011 to be well within rounding error from 1.4 billion years, so I have no isse with using that year) so the terms BCE and CE - before the common era and common era - are more descriptive and do not make any assumptions about whether Jesus lived or whether he was Christ.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 06:13 PM

Incredible idea, Rapparee! I hope you succeed in pursuading the world to adopt this timely change you have proposed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: GUEST,999
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 06:14 PM

And as a hush fell over the crowd a wee voice was heard from the back of the auditorium: Fu#k the date, what time is it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 06:16 PM

It's all relative. For instance, it's dark now in Japan.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 06:39 PM

What I find offensive is someone calling me an arsehole. I mean to say - I'm far less usefull than that!

I didn't even click the link, Richard. Is it tabloid wind up again?

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 07:02 PM

I can see why Max sometimes says that the BS section here at Mudcat is a wasteland. This was an out-dated topic in a pointless thread.

Instead of sitting at the computer looking for things to be bothered by, go outside, take a walk, read a good book, watch an old comedy television program. Take a nap. Or go sing a song.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 07:36 PM

I've been using the terms BCE and CE for nearly fifty years. Many historians specializing in Ancient Near Eastern History and NE Archaeology were already using that nomenclature, and has come into more and more use, although still not universally.

I suppose it depends on your religious outlook whether or not these terms offend. Bible Believing Christians (whatever that means) seem to be the most offended when scholarly acronyms is substituted for BC and AD; in fact, it caused quite a dust-up in the popular magazine, Biblical Archaeology Reader, some years ago.

I like the modern terminology. It can actually satisfy both Christians and non-Christians alike. Christians (and traditionalists) can use the acronyms to mean Before Christian Era and Christian Era, while scholars and others can use them to denote Before Common Era and Common Era.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Rapparee
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 09:43 PM

What do you mean, 999, "what time is it?"

Time is relative, and now that scientists think that they may have found a something that goes faster than light, it becomes even worse.

"We don't serve your kind here," said the bartender.

A neutrino walked into a bar.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: BTNG
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 10:42 PM

A young woman named Julia Bright,
Who could travel faster than light,
She left, one day, in a relative way,
And returned on the previous night


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 26 Sep 11 - 11:59 PM

"Fuck the date" - as I recall, that used to be the objective.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 12:11 AM

A propos, this is a current news story here in the UK, having been the subject of a number of very recent news media presentations. I must therefore reject Stilly River Sage's view above.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: GUEST,999
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 01:10 AM

There has been a particle, one which phases in and out of reality/cognizance since the '60s. (Maybe earlier.) THAT ain't news, either. It goes faster than light sometimes, and slower than light at others.

In terms of the sentence, Fuck the date, what is missing IS the subject. Obviously, it is the object that's left--or right from this view. :-)

That said, no one has told me the time yet.

And, no, time is NOT relative. Time is what everything else is relative to. That's why I want to know what time it is! :-)

For example, it is 1:00 am. My computer says it's 1:09.

SO, W'sTFT?


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Paul Burke
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 02:11 AM

The answer is that they didn't fix the year zero problem; 1BC(E) is followed by 1AD (CE). So the new nomenclature still means you have to remember to add 1 to all years 0 or earlier.

So what we need is a new system, based on mathematical principles. We can't easily change modern years, but no one cares much what happened when a long time ago, so adding 1 to all BC years should be generally acceptable.

But what we also need is an event that happened in 1 BC to mark the Year Zero. Wikipedia reveals the year as peculiarly uneventful. Ping of Han became Emperor of China. That's not earthshaking, it doesn't even rattle the crockery. Augustus of Rome sent Gaius to negociate a peace treaty with the Persians. Again, thoroughly worthy, but no turning point.

Ovid wrote Ars Amatoria. That's the best we can do. Name the era after this. AA, BA- After Ars, Before Ars. And 0 AA becomes The Year Of The Ars.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 03:23 AM

Toynbee in Guardian wrote, "No, the BBC hasn't dropped the use of BC and AD, but one website editor decided that BCE/CE was more appropriate."

Mail said yesterday,"(BBC) insisted the change was not a guideline and was the choice of individual production teams."

However they gave a direct quote from the BBC's religion and ethics department, "As the BBC is committed to impartiality it is appropriate that we use terms that do not offend or alienate non-Christians."

Using the terms BCE and CE does not change the inconvenient fact that the numbering system referred to is still based on the birth of Jesus.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 04:48 AM

May we take it that Stilly will withdraw?


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 06:05 AM

Does it really matter?? I will always use BC and AD because I always have done. I care nothing for PC claptrap.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: GUEST,Jim Knowledge
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 07:15 AM

I `ad that John in my cab the other day. `e`d just flown in from the Sunset Coast.
`e said, "Hi there Jim, get me up to the `oliday Inn as fast as you like and I wanna get there this year".
I said, "What, this year, 2011?". Attempting a bit of `yoomer`.
`e said, "You got it. 2011 CE."
I said, " What`s all this CE, then?"
`e said, "Common Era."
I said, "Never `eard of it. When did it start then?".
`e said, "When Jesus was born."
I said, "Why don`t you say so ,then??"

Whaddam I Like??


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: GUEST,Patsy
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 07:17 AM

These days I use the term BMs or ABMs Before mobiles or After mobiles.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 08:00 AM

My cousin Martin who is not online or accessible by e.mail describes himself as BC = Before Computers...


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Rapparee
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 09:05 AM

"Time" is a human construct used to measure duration. Sometimes, like during Latin class, it goes more slowly than at others.

Actually, we always live in the "Now." You might remember the past, but you do so in the Now. The Now is also being business defining the future.

Time is only humanity's way of stopping everything from happening at once.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 09:15 AM

So thing's really aren't what they used to be?


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: artbrooks
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 09:42 AM

BC/AD was well on its way out when I took my first history degree in 1968. Of course, we know that the UK, especially its stodgier elements such as the BBS, prefers to cling desperately to the past. :>)


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 11:07 AM

GUEST,JimKnowledge--
I almost recall that incident, but then I remember that I haven't flown in years, anywhere, and it has been even longer since I was in a cab (by which I understand you to mean a hired means of automobile transportation.) Finally, the only conversations I have with cabbies are where I want to go and 'Keep the Change.'
I think, Jim, your recollection is apocryphal to make the point that you like things as they always were. But know this, too...if ever I do fly to your city, I will avail myself of your transportational service, and we can then have the conversation you report.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: autolycus
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 11:39 AM

We no more need a year zero than we need a 0th January between 31st December and 1st January.

Calendar numbering is different from other numberings.

When our calendar was being constructed in the 6th Century, the zero as a number had not yet arrived in Europe. So Dionysius Exiguus had our calenday go from 1B.C. to 1 A.D., just like in the months example above.


Incidentally, people having used BCE/CE for upwards of only 50 years, it's no wonder the daily wail calls the terms 'obscure'. it's read by the wives of the people who run the country.


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Lighter
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 12:13 PM

> Calendar numbering is different from other numberings.

Indeed.

Quick, how many years between 2003 and 2013?

How many between 3 BCE and 3 CE?


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: Bert
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 12:24 PM

I thought that everyone knew that AD is short for Anno Domini which means "From the year Dot"

As for a year zero; there is no such thing as zero so why should there be a year zero?


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Subject: RE: BS: Years 'BC' or 'AD' offensive?
From: autolycus
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 12:28 PM

Anno Domini means "The Year of Our Lord".

I wasn't saying there's no such thing as zero.


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