Every language has phrases that some would consider derogatory and even discriminatory, but Uruguay is the first country to actually form a petition to get rid of the phrases from the dictionary and penalize people for using them in public.
The petition was started by the House of Afro-Uruguayan Culture, and they have specifically asked for one specific phrase to be removed from the dictionary.
Expressions That Can Be Used For Racial Slurs
The Spanish language has several common phrases that can easily be used as racial slurs. The phrase that the House of Afro-Uruguayan Culture would specifically like removed is “trabajar como un negro.”
The Spanish translation is “to work like a black person,” and though the dictionary says that the definition is “to work a lot,” many people have also used the phrase in a negative context. The petition has already been signed by over twenty thousand people, and more signatures are gathered every day in Uruguay.
Activists in Uruguay
Local Uruguay activists would also like to see a change in the language people use every day and have prompted local authorities to consider penalizing people who use discriminatory language at public events, specifically soccer games. They are debating whether or not to stop games if the crowds begin to chant a racial slur, which often happens at public matches.