[[quoteright:255:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/2target.jpg]]

In the past, we like to think, there were many more AcceptableTargets than there are today. Back then, unlike the present, an easy source of humor was to select people with a different appearance, culture, religion or gender from the assumed audience, treat them as inferior, and make fun of them.

Some of these targets are no longer popular. In some cases, [[DecadeDissonance times have changed]], and what was funny in 1935 simply is not funny now. More importantly perhaps, changed economic and political circumstances have transformed some previously-despised target groups into valuable demographics that it is unwise to antagonise. Some feel, particularly those who would prefer to go on picking on these Once Acceptable Targets, that these changes can be "blamed" on PoliticalCorrectnessGoneMad. BlackComedy will laugh at Once Acceptable Targets as much as possible with the express purpose of causing a hostile reaction.

In popular works that have Once Acceptable Targets as only part of the work, the offending parts of the work are often changed to suit modern tastes. For example, in Gilbert and Sullivan's 'The Mikado', the original lyrics to the song 'As some day it may happen' contains racial slurs that modern audiences will not appreciate. The lyrics are therefore changed so that the overall play can be shown without the distraction of the slurs.

Incidentally, a group may be listed on this page as a Once Acceptable Target, and still be oppressed, persecuted, mocked, negatively stereotyped or discriminated against today. It's just not ''quite'' as universally endorsed anymore.

See also AcceptableTargets, UnacceptableTargets, PositiveDiscrimination, ValuesDissonance.
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!!Examples

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Gender/Sexuality]]

'''Homosexuals''':

Until fairly recently, in the western world, [[AllGaysArePedophiles gay men were considered the same as pedophiles]], and lesbians were viewed as either evil (sometimes oddly asexual) succubi who [[LesbianVampire tempt pure women away]] from their [[{{EntitledToHaveYou}} God-given]] duty to be sexually available to men, or [[StrawFeminist man-hating raging feminists]] who would enjoy nothing more than severing a man's genitalia and set them on fire, if they were even acknowledged to exist at all. Changing times have resulted in more out-and-out gay people in media. [[NoBisexuals Don't expect to see any bisexuals, though]], unless EveryoneIsBi.

Plus, of course, the mere ''existence'' of homosexuals used to be [[QueerPeopleAreFunny and still is]] considered hilarious. Possibly, this was owing to homosexuality making a lot of people uncomfortable and many people laughing to cover their discomfort. At any rate, Dick Emery's camp characters only had to ''allude'' to fancying a man, or one of the wives visiting the convicts in ''{{Porridge}}'' be shown to be a gay and there was a huge guffaw on the laugh track.

[[/folder]]

[[folder:Ethnicity/Race]]

Pretty much everyone who is not English, French, or German. Unless they invaded your country, then they were fair game as well. (Like, if you're from England or France!)

'''Black People''':

When Europeans carved out worldwide empires in the 15th to 19th centuries, they began buying African slaves in large quantities. Viewed as savages, indigenous Africans became an acceptable target for slavery. Many were brought to the English, Spanish, French, Dutch, or Portuguese colonies in the Americas to work as slaves alongside a dwindled population of enslaved Natives. After slavery was outlawed throughout the world, and in America after the Civil War, attitudes towards the descendants of these slaves changed little. Due to lack of education and social status, blacks have for a long time been portrayed as either big, dumb brutes or UncleTomfoolery. Today, treatment varies with the setting. If the story is set in DarkestAfrica, the black natives will usually be of the NobleSavage variety. In North America and Western Europe, a black person is generally portrayed as an ordinary person, albeit somewhat more streetwise than a white person, and with [[BlackDudeDiesFirst somewhat higher mortality]]. There's still the risk of a "gangsta" or JiveTurkey showing up, though. As a PositiveDiscrimination backlash against all this, the MagicalNegro was created, but now he's a cliche, too.
* There was a Black and White Minstrel Show on British TV from the late 1950s until the 1970s.
* In Belgium, black-face is still considered socially acceptable. As mentioned below, this caused some major ValuesDissonance when the ''ComicBook/{{Asterix}}'' series was exported internationally.
* Japan, too. The average Japanese person has had very little interaction with black people, or foreigners in general and tend towards xenophobia. Still, you think they could do a Google search.
** Weirdest thing is, When this was popular, they didn't think it was silly. They thought it was COOL.
*** [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Qe4AZRkFYE This YouTube video]] about the "B-''gyaru''" (short for "Black ''gyaru''") subculture pretty much sums up the point.
* There is a yearly recurring 'scandal' about the Dutch use of several black servants to a white bishop in the Dutch tradition of Sinterklaas. The origin of Zwarte Piet ("Black Pete") is not completely clear, opinions vary between a defeated devil or a freed Moorish slave, but his depictions are clearly blackface. Nowadays, children are often told he is black because of soot from the chimney, but that doesn't explain the full red lips or black afro.

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Franco-Belgian Comic Books ]]

* ''{{Asterix}}'' has a popular recurring character who is drawn in a BlackFace manner and speaks in a stereotypical accent (at least in France), and is particularly grotesque in the 60s and 70s albums. He was notably absent from 1996's ''The Secret Weapon'' (possibly as an attempt to modernise) but fan outcry led to him getting a big role in the next book ''Obelix All At Sea'', as he's easily the most likeable pirate and something of an - [[NoPunIntended ahem]] - EnsembleDarkhorse despite his design being contemptible. Thanks to a refined character design, he's a more reasonable caricature in ''Asterix and Obelix's Birthday'' (2009), but retains noticeably bright red lips (even if they aren't grotesquely huge and rubbery any more).

'''East Asians''':

Perhaps the most recently removed from the list of AcceptableTargets, East Asians are far more accepted in contemporary times. In the late 19th century/early 20th century Asians were the victim of YellowPeril stereotypes, and often made fun of for their exotic clothing and strange language, often portrayed as buck-toothed, bespectacled and with banana-yellow skin. Then WWII and the bombing of Pearl Harbor happened and all bets were off. It was especially vicious for the Japanese--You'll notice in WWII-era propaganda such as {{Wartime cartoon}}s, Germans will be portrayed as brutish thugs, but not quite inhuman (usually just big and burly/ugly), but the Japanese were portrayed as an entire race of violent devils who wanted to kill everybody. A mix of the sneak attack of Pearl Harbor (compared to the Germans, who hadn't committed any major anti-American atrocities aside from standard warfare) and their non-white nature is a nasty one. Asians are treated more kindly these days, and Asians are seen as very intelligent and excel in academics, though of course this leads to the supposedly "positive" stereotype of [[AsianAndNerdy nerds]]. These days Asian men are portrayed as staunch businessmen or martial artists, and Asian women as exotic beauties, but basically [[MonochromeCasting don't expect them to appear in films or TV much at all]] compared to other minorities out there.

'''Ethnic Indians and Middle Eastern people''':

In Britain, they used to be stereotypically wacky, nerdy conservative Muslims or a strange mish-mash of religions who took "true" British peoples jobs but due to quite very large percentage being native in the 4th generation the stereotype is dead.

'''Hispanics''':

Despite America's welcoming borders to immigrants from most other countries, there are still sharp restrictions on immigration from its Spanish-speaking neighbors to the south. Since Mexico and the central American nations tend to be poorer economically than the U.S., some Americans fear that immigrants from these countries would be willing to work for peanuts and, thus, would steal the job market away. Unfortunately, this means that many Hispanic immigrants to the U.S. are here illegally, and so can only take off-the-radar jobs that ''do'' pay peanuts, thus reinforcing the stereotype. At least it's no longer acceptable to make "José Jiménez" jokes at their expense.

'''Indians''':

For a long time, people from India were portrayed in basically the same way as Native Americans, but with worse accents. However, the popularity of {{Bollywood}} productions have caused a shift in attitudes. Modern Indian characters are often either medical doctors or skilled [[PlayfulHacker hackers]], reflecting India's strong software development industry; whether this is a positive portrayal or a perpetuation of stereotypes is an occasional source of debate. Still occasionally put behind the counter at 7-11, though. Indians and Pakistanis owning convenience stores is probably the longest lasting Indian stereotype in America with a grain of TruthInTelevision. See BollywoodNerd and OperatorFromIndia for IT-related stereotypes in specific.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Live Action Television ]]

* Raj Koothrapali on ''TheBigBangTheory'' is a highly-regarded astrophysicist, somewhat averting the trope, but definitely pokes fun at it by turning it UpToEleven.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* Back in the '90s, ''JonnyQuest'' tried to avert this, by giving the Indian Hadji tremendous computer skills. [[HilariousInHindsight Oops]].
* Apu from TheSimpsons, who runs the [=Kwik-E-Mart=]
* Baljeet, Danville's resident BollywoodNerd from ''WesternAnimation/PhineasAndFerb''.

'''Irish''':

Something of a CyclicTrope. Until TheNineties, whenever an Irish person appeared in a BritishSeries, they would either be a drunk, a fool, or both. Later, as many Irish people became rich, they are now often lumped in with [=WASPs=] (or [=WCCs=], as the case may be) and have started drifting back into the realm of AcceptableTargets. In the US, the Irish were a longtime acceptable target, with this peaking in the mid to late 19th century and early 20th. Stereotypes of the time usually depicted the Irish as drunken, lawless, buffoonish, and lazy. Combined with the fact that many Irish were also Catholic, (see details below) didn't help either. This is now mostly forgotten in the US, although stereotypes about drunkenness and such persist. Also a rich source of WesternTerrorists, see also UsefulNotes/TheTroubles. Furthermore, no matter what time period it is, Irish people are {{Fiery Redhead}}s about 80% of the time, especially in non-UK media, despite red hair being rare among Irish people.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Film ]]

* Creator/MelBrooks's ''Film/BlazingSaddles'' gave the occasional exception to the American forgetfulness, when the racist locals at one point reluctantly agree to find some land for the black and Chinese workers aiding them against an army of thugs, but firmly state "But we don't want the Irish!"

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Literature ]]

* ''The Damnation of Theron Ware'', by Harold Frederic, depicts all aspects of the Irish stereotype--Catholic via Father Forbes, FieryRedhead through Celia Madden, and violent drunkard through her ape-like brother Michael. While the portraits offered are generally more complex and nuanced than mere stereotype, and it's made very clear that Theron is ultimately at fault for trying to be something he is not while throwing aside his faith in the process, they are still blamed for his "damnation" and overall not very flattering examples of the Irish.

'''Native Americans / American Indians''':

For a long time, portrayed as either deadly savages or pathetic fools. Today, if American Indians feature in a story set in the past, they will usually be [[NobleSavage noble savages]] dressed in BraidsBeadsAndBuckskins; in a modern setting, they will tend to yearn for the old days, and often deliver AnAesop on environmentalism. Either that, or [[MagicalNativeAmerican they'll be connected to the spirits and the ways of the world]]. Or they're poor and live in a trailer. Casino ownership is increasingly prevalent in modern works.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Literature ]]

* ''Literature/LastOfTheMohicans'' was an early aversion, but it didn't exactly take.

'''Poles and Finns''':

Were once interchangeably used (particularly in Russia) as an insult to someone's parentage (i.e., "Your father was a drunk Finn/Pole who beat your mother."). As there used to be few immigrants from those ethnic groups, and are rather quiet today, they are still occasionally derided against by [[NWordPrivileges those of either heritage]]. Poles have also had a long history of jokes about their supposed lack of intelligence, most of which have migrated to [[DumbBlonde blondes]].

'''Russians''':

ColdWar, anyone? For an extended period of recent history there was a disproportionate number of evil Russian masterminds (according to Western media, anyway). Regardless of the fact that the Cold War was a bloodless war (not counting things like 'Nam or Korea), if you see a Russian on screen in a film more than 20 years old, he will be bloodthirsty, cunning, and likely a MagnificentBastard . After all, if the Russians '''weren't''' incredibly cunning and evil, an argument could be made that the US didn't gain anything from the Cold War (save Nukes). In any film made within the last 20 years, Russians will probably be brilliant scientists, drinking vodka, or still pretty damn evil. And often [[TheMafiya mobsters]]. Also, Russian woman are often portrayed as either [[BrawnHilda ugly]] or as a sexy female spy luring Film/JamesBond into a trap.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Film ]]

* There was a brief window during World War II where Russians were America's heroic allies. Thus, ''{{Casablanca}}'' (1942) and ''Film/MissionToMoscow'' (1943) contained some of the last depictions of sympathetic Russians for twenty years.


'''Spaniards'''

The original Argentine national anthem was a nationalist anti-Spanish lyrical outing, which is understandable given they were fighting an independence war against Spain at the time. By 1900, though, a decree officially removed all the offensive parts from the lyrics since Spain had gone from being the evil imperialists to become the ''Madre Patria'' (something like "Mother Nation").
* [[ValuesDissonance It should be noted that we still tell Spaniard jokes, in which they are dumber than a brick, and we laugh at them. Actually it´s not funny BECAUSE they are Spaniards (this was the case some decades ago, impulsed probably by the many European inmigrants who came to Argentina during the early XX century, who usually had poor educations and got crappy jobs), but the jokes themselves are still considered funny]].

'''Swedes''':

In the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Swedish immigrants to the United States were referred to as "Dumb Swedes". This stereotype can still be found in historical novels.
* In Finland, all Swedish people are considered "fags". The historical reason for this stereotype is that Sweden decriminalized homosexuality in 1944, 27 years before Finland. Before decriminalization happened in Finland in 1971 many Finnish homosexuals moved to Sweden so they could live in peace, and the idea of homosexuality as "the Swedish disease" became common in Finnish popular culture. The stereotype of "Swedish fags" still lives on in Finland today, even though the history behind it is now largely forgotten.

'''Norwegians''':
Similar to some of the other stereotypes about Scandinavian nationalities, but there's a few particular wrinkles.
* In [[APrairieHomeCompanion Lake Wobegon]], Norwegian bachelor farmers are portrayed as being ornery, cranky old geezers who are neglectful about personal hygiene.
* In Norway's neighbor to the east, Sweden, Norwegians are joked about as being a lot like what people in the northern United States would describe as rednecks.

'''Turks''':

Thanks to centuries of Ottoman oppression, and a few nasty genocides, Turkish people are a widespread acceptable target in the Balkans and Greece. Indeed, one of the nastiest insults (equivalent to calling someone a [[CountryMatters cunt]] in the west) in some Balkan regions is "Turk".

'''Ukrainians''':

Were once both the Russian and the Western Canadian go-to group for ethnic jokes that needed the subject to be dumb, shifty, dishonest, drunken, etc. However, in Russia ethnic jokes never went out of vogue, and nowadays you can also hear Russian jokes about Ukrainians being full of misplaced nationalistic fervor.
* In Russia the Ukrainian jokes usually don't portray Ukrainians as dumb ''per se'', but rather rustically cunning and ''extremely'' cheapskate, often too much for their own good, and lacking a sophistication/ignorant; them being largely transplanted jokes about peasants/rednecks. The thing is, Russians still have hard time imagining Ukrainians as a different nation, and mostly view them as those ignorant cousins from the countryside. In Ukraine itself the same stereotype is used by the city wellers against country bumpkins.

[[/folder]]

[[folder:Religions]]

'''Catholics''':

The US has a strong Protestant tradition, from the Mayflower onwards, and for much of American history Catholics were a small minority which was viewed with great suspicion. It didn't help, either, that most American Catholics were either Irish (see above) or natives of non-English speaking European countries, tossing xenophobia into the mix. Anti-Catholic sentiment peaked in the 19th century, when it was widely believed in many Protestant circles, and claimed in many pamphlets and "true confession" novels, that the Catholic church was a secretive Satanic cabal which practiced human sacrifice and was plotting to destroy American democracy. These sentiments have waned enough over the years that JohnFKennedy, a Catholic, was able to narrowly win the 1960 presidential election, for John Kerry to come within a hair's breadth of doing the same in 2004, and for Joe Biden to be elected vice president in 2008, not to mention 6 of the current 9 Supreme Court justices, but even today there are a few holdouts convinced that the Church of Rome is evil. Creator/JackChick is probably the best known, but recent pedophilia-and-coverup scandals have pushed the Catholic church back towards an AcceptableTarget in some eyes.
* In British history, discrimination switched between Catholics and Protestants depending on the religion of the ruler at the time. The current royal family is descended from Germans, because the Catholic James II was driven from the throne in 1688, and the nearest Protestant relatives were Mary and William of Orange, the Stadtholder of the United Provinces of the Netherlands, who failed to produce an heir which caused the crown to pass to Mary's sister Anne, who also produced no heir, causing the crown to pass to George of Hanover. The Act Of Settlement of 1701 remains in force, barring any Roman Catholic, or person ''married'' to one, from succession to the throne, and requiring any monarch to be a member of the Church Of England. (This is ''partly'' justified in that the monarch is the ''Supreme Governor'' of the Church of England, so it helps if they're a member. Basically, it's all the fault of [[HenryVIII some fat Pommie king]]. Who, ironically, was a Catholic.)
* American Catholics were mistrusted partly because they were seen as having allegiance to a foreign power (the Vatican); Kennedy had to assure people that as President he would not be taking his marching orders from the Pope. Today, this prejudice has eased off considerably with the North American lay Catholic population becoming notorious for ignoring Papal directives such as ones against birth control and gay rights.
* In Ireland, the Catholic Church is very much an AcceptableTarget, mainly due to the abuse scandals. One example is an episode of a political show made by the state broadcaster, RTÉ, based on a priest who had received allegations of child abuse. The show concluded that the priest was indeed a pedophile; turns out that the priest was completely innocent. Despite the director of the BBC stepping down in the wake of a similar scandal concerning Alistair McAlpine, RTÉ's director-general is still firmly in place.

'''Orthodox Christians''':

For a very long time, members of the various Orthodox Christian churches were seen as evil by Catholics.

'''Protestants''':

Essentially the reverse of the above, while Catholics were acceptable targets for Protestants, Protestants were at the same time acceptable targets for Catholics in countries with Catholic majorities. [[TheFundamentalist Some of the stricter conservative Protestant sects]] remain Acceptable Targets, though, even (or perhaps especially) to other Protestants.

'''Jews''':

As far back as recorded history can tell us, the Jews have suffered from negative portrayals in the media; and in particular, Jews have been AcceptableTargets in Christianity for longer than it's been known as Christianity. However, since a lot of screenwriters and pioneering ComicBook authors were Jewish, Jews have pretty much become ordinary people on TV; indeed, [[YouHaveToHaveJews most shows will have at some point have one character revealing their Jewishness]] to show how racially sensitive the writers are. Also, since many comedy writers are Jewish, even non-Jews have become familiar with Jewish culture through TV sitcoms and movies by Mel Brooks and Woody Allen, among many others. These days, Jewish characters are almost guaranteed to be lawyers, doctors, accountants and other educated, white-collar professionals, and "Jewish" almost a tongue-in-cheek synonym for "good at his job". The horrors of [[{{Nazis}} The Holocaust]] also had their influence, to say the least. On the other hand, in the Arab world, Jews are still very much AcceptableTargets, largely thanks to the UsefulNotes/ArabIsraeliConflict. ''Literature/TheProtocolsOfTheEldersOfZion'' is taught as fact in Saudi schools.

'''Mormons''':

Despite being counted as the fourth largest Christian denomination in the United States, misconceptions about the LDS church about in media, primarily concerning polygamy. Most times, if a Mormon is depicted, they are somehow involved in polygamy. Other stereotypes include aversions to alcohol, tobacco, and foul language.


[[/folder]]

[[folder:Other]]

'''Actors''':

At one time (generally from the 1600s up until the late 19th-early 20th century), actors, singers, and other entertainers were often viewed in a very negative light. Originally this was likely due to the Puritans and their views of anything filled with frivolity and fun, or which glamorized dishonesty (since pretending to be someone else, or telling fictional stories, is a form of lying) as a horrible sin. This idea had consequences ranging from the banning of Maypoles and other light-hearted festivals to the picketing and boycotting of theaters and the refusal by English rulers to authorize or endorse playwrights.

Eventually such views faded, for which many Shakespearean scholars can be thankful, but when the Puritans crossed over to colonize America they brought this view with them. Probably thanks to the eventual conceit that anyone could achieve the American dream but only if they "pulled themselves up by their bootstraps", and the fact that being paid to act, dance, and sing not only appeared like laziness but was generally not a very good way of making a living (see the StarvingArtist), this view persisted into the early 20th century, and in the late 19th showed up a great deal in literature. Prominent examples would be Theodore Dreiser's ''Sister Carrie'' and Paul Laurence Dunbar's ''The Sport of the Gods'', as well as the Willa Cather short story, "A Gold Slipper".

Nowadays, of course, it is much more feasible to make a lucrative career out of such a thing, even if the actor never becomes wildly successful. As such, it is less likely for a parent to discourage their child from following this path, although telling them that the odds of career success can be a real long shot with a lot of dues to pay is still a necessity. Certain stereotypes persist, such as the vapid self-absorbed millionaire and the limousine liberal[[note]]Based on the perception of Hollywood as heavily biased to the political left, this slur is pointed at those who talk about trendy causes, while living a lavish lifestyle and seemingly doing nothing to actually help[[/note]], but an individual can easily shake these off through his or her actions. Of course, between the popularity of celebrity culture and the way politics (both governmental and [[AwardSnub within the acting world]]) enters into it, [[TakeThat some might argue]] that people still disparage actors (or should), but for a different reason. Regardless, it is mostly a DiscreditedTrope.

'''Amputees''':

Especially hand amputees [[HookHand wearing a hook]], are almost invariably depicted as evil. Usually this is to add a creepy quality to a villainous character, and it could be made to make them look like a pirate, camp or otherwise.
* {{Pirates}} are often depicted with peglegs or hooks, though this may be more to reinforce their [[{{Badass}} badassery]] than villainy.
** This was also a bit of a TruthInTelevision, as the standard response to injury and infection on pirate ships (which were often far from ports and lacked medicines) was to take a saw to the injured or infected limb.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Literature ]]

* "Zodiac Zig" Zigurski in ''Literature/TheHardyBoys'' novel ''Mystery of the Flying Express'' (who'd lost a hand trying to crack a safe with explosives).

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Live-Action TV ]]

* Played for laughs in ''Series/ArrestedDevelopment'' [[BigNo "I'M A MONSTER!"]]
* Didi from ''MyNameIsEarl''. Subverted in that she really ''does'' have a legitimate reason to be upset with Earl; not only did he ditch her the morning after he slept with her when he found her prosthetic leg after she went to go make them some breakfast, but he [[spoiler: stole money from her purse, and her car, as well as the aforementioned prosthesis.]] Double-subverted for the way she went about dealing with the whole situation.

'''Animals''':

Before the passage of endangered species legislation, many animals, specifically dangerous animals like lions and gorillas, tended to portray the antagonist, making it ok for the dashing lead to beat the crap out of them and even kill them at times. Nowadays, this type of treatment offends many people, not just animal activists, so this has heavily toned down (for a great example, compare the original ''Film/KingKong'' to the recent remake).

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Film ]]

* ''CannibalHolocaust'' contained graphic scenes of real animal torture that was significant in turning the tide of thought against the abuse of animals in films, and popularised the standard of the NoAnimalsWereHarmed label. This didn't keep there being more gratuitous {{Mockbuster}}s capitalising on the controversy which turned the animal torture UpToEleven.

'''Bastards''':

Whether your parents were subjected to a particular ritual before your birth isn't today a matter of much moment. For most of Western history this was not the case. Historian Maggie Secara [[http://elizabethan.org/compendium/40.html points out]] that in Elizabethan times you legally ''could not own property'' if you were illegitimate, could not hold public office, could not ''marry''. This discrimination continued into modern times, often framed in terms of the illegitimate child's "right to a name": Creator/GeneStrattonPorter's 1904 novel ''Literature/{{Freckles}}'' is largely based around the notion of the hero's supposed bastardy, and on his use of the name "Freckles" because he has no "right" to any other. It wasn't until 1927 that the law in Texas was revised to remove the word "ILLEGITIMATE" from birth certificates. As late as 1959, Creator/RobertAHeinlein based a story around the notion that an "Unmarried Mother" would do everything she could to conceal her--and her child's--status.

'''The left-handed''':

Once invariably portrayed as [[ASinisterClue evil]], careless, misguided, or any combination of the three.

* In Old French, left was "''sinestre''" and right was "''dexter''". Now, "''gauche''" is left and "''droit''" (which also means "straight"—as in "uncrooked, unbent") is right.
** Those originally come from Latin: ''sinister'' = "left", ''dexter'' = "right". ''Gauche'' comes from a Frankish word cognate to the English word ''walk'', while ''droit'' comes from the Latin ''directus'' (meaning "straight"), from where English got the word ''direct''.
** Also note that ''gauche'' is still used as a synonym for something being unacceptable, unfashionable, or a politically incorrect faux pas, while ''adroit'' is a word with positive connotations (agile, quick, clever). And the word "dexterous" has also come to mean being agile and clever, while "sinister" is a synonym for dark, wicked, and evil.
* Right is a synonym for correct. Left looks like an abbreviation for left over. Now think about any time you've heard "right/left hand side".
** Here more to think about: ''right'' (the direction) was indeed a semantic expansion of ''right'' ("correct"). The Old English word that ''left'' (again, the direction) descended from meant "idle, weak, useless".
* In Spanish [[http://buscon.rae.es/draeI/SrvltConsulta?TIPO_BUS=3&LEMA=derecho "Derecho"]] (a word for "right", the direction) means also just and legitimate. [[{{Irony}} It is also the word for the career of Law.]]
** Although oddly enough, "having left hand" is slang for diplomacy skills.
** Equally odd, a windstorm that has straight-line winds doing almost as much structural damage to buildings as a tornado would do is called a derecho, so if you hear your weatherman use that word, '''[[DontAskJustRun take cover immediately]]'''
* In Hungarian, right is "jobb", meaning "better". Left is "bal", which mostly corresponds to the English "ill-" prefix.
* The word ambidextrous, referring to people capable of writing or performing other tasks with both hands, literally translates as "right-handed with both hands." The implication is that using your right hand as your dominant hand is the correct way to behave, and ambidextrous people are capable of using their left hand as an extra right hand.
* This may have a (supposed) grounding in history--it also ties back into why we're supposed to shake with the right hand. Back in the days when carrying a weapon was in fashion, shaking hands was an easy way to say "hey, man, I'm not planning on killing you". The key was that you were supposed to shake with the right hand--so a left-handed person could both shake and attack.
** Inverted among the Zulu people of what is today South Africa. They used left-handed shaking as a sign of trust: because most Zulu warriors carried their weapons in their right hands and shields in their left hands, they had to drop their defenses to signal that they trusted the person to whom they were offering their hand. Lord Baden-Powell, founder of the Scout movement, learned this character trait while he was stationed in the colonial military there and appropriated it for Scouting.
* The left hand is also the one you should supposedly use if you don't have access to toilet paper, making it exceptionally impolite to offer that hand to shake.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Literature ]]

* EdgarAllanPoe's story "Never Bet the Devil Your Head" and [[http://www.merrycoz.org/museum/LEFT.HTM this charming little story]] from a 19th-century children's magazine about a careless and stubborn left-handed boy.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* A very subtle one from ''TheSimpsons'' which is never given direct reference -- Bart is left-handed, and is a notorious trouble-maker.
** It should also be noted that many (maybe most) of MattGroening's characters are left-handed. So while Bart is left-handed, so is Ned Flanders.

'''The Military''':

To be more precise, common soldiers were often the butt of jokes in the UK and other parts of Europe during the 17-19th century period, compared to dogs, had jokes made about "selling themselves for a shilling" being uneducated, etc. The trend was in decline for a long time but was killed off fairly conclusively by the world wars, when [[AcceptableInevitableTargets practically everyone was either in the military or was close to someone who was]].

In addition, post-VietnamWar veterans in the United States were derided by war protesters for fighting in the war (although nowhere near as much as many of the pro-war people would have you believe), and were shunned by the older generation for "losing" the war. Nowadays, even with the unpopularity of the Iraq War, the American public at large has been consistent with its support and gratitude of combat troops, and most Vietnam veterans are getting the recognition they deserve. The transition to an all-volunteer and high-tech military, with which many people enlist to further their educations, also did away with old presumptions that soldiers weren't all that smart.

'''Rape Victims''':

A form of sexism/ victim-blaming wherein a victim of sexual assault was accused of "asking for it" by the way they dressed or behaved. Women in the 20s and 30s were regarded as [[DefiledForever pariahs]] for having been raped, and this is still the case in many countries. Still appears in the West in some forms, such as the comments which sparked the "Slut Walk" phenomena. However most "prior chastity" laws (which stated that rape of an unmarried woman ''was not rape if she was not a virgin'') have been taken off the books. Some jurisdictions have gone further, forbidding the defence from bringing the victim's sexual history into play.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Anime and Manga ]]

* ''WebVideo/BerserkAbridged'' plays much of the original series for humor, but it doesn't really play Guts' RapeAsBackstory for laughs (it's at most, understated BlackComedy), and for this reason, the creator gave the series a happy ending, as there really wasn't a way to make the show's actual ending funny.

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[[folder: Tabletop Games ]]

* Not really the defining trait of FATAL (that would be stupidity) but the factor that best exemplifies everything wrong with the game. By the rules of the society in which the game functions, rape is barely a crime, and rapists may well be commended for their despicable act while the victim is inevitably shunned by society for the rest of her life.

'''Sports Fans''':

Once considered to be considered weird to show die-hardness towards sports teams much like other fandoms, today [[DoubleStandard they are the exception to this rule]]. Conversely, some people regard you as being more than a little weird if you're not big on sports--especially if you're a man.

While some sports fandoms can still be ridiculed, such as those who play fantasy sports, fans of "That Other Football" (ex. an American Football fan in Britain or a Soccer fan in America), and Chicago Cubs fans (and other teams that have a really long championship drought, such as the [[{{NHL}} Toronto Maple Leafs]]), even they aren't as lambasted as other [[AcceptableHobbyTargets fandoms]].

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[[folder: Literature ]]

* Creator/TerryPratchett perhaps says it best: ''"The main difference between [[Franchise/StarTrek Trekkies]] and [[TheBeautifulGame Manchester United]] fans is that Trekkies never [[FootballHooligans trashed a train carriage]]. [[AcceptableHobbyTargets So why are the Trekkies the social outcasts?]]"''

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[[folder: Web Original ]]

* Lampshaded in this [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BIUQw1w5OqM online sketch]] that addresses the hypocrisy then makes fun of both fans for their fandom.

'''Nerds''':

Or more specifically, anyone who excels in school subjects, especially math. Generally depicted as being hopelessly socially awkward, obsessed with topics that general society doesn't care about, physically clumsy, compulsive video game players and having horrible fashion taste, it was practically standard in 90s American television for there to be one as a minor character. These days, while some of that stigma still remains, the rise of major internet companies, the increased popularity of video games, the spread of cyberwarfare capabilities and the association of the U.S. military with high tech weapons (especially [[AttackDrones drones]]) has gone a long way towards discrediting the stereotype and even leading to shows that portray them in a genuinely positive light.
* Many of these nerds grew up and went to Hollywood to write screenplays and teleplays. Suddenly nerd-dom is cool. Hmmmm....

'''People with Dwarfism'''

Those who lack in the height department have been the targets of due to due though the odds of having a child with Achondroplasia [[note]]always a heterozygous since a homozygous dominant will result in a fatality[[/note]] are 50 percent, even with a person without the gene since it's a dominant gene. Thanks to this, a person with Achondroplasia can have "normal" size child, even if the spouse has the condition too. However, in recent years, people with the condition has been proven they shouldn't be taken lightly, often seen in many programs, including the WWE where wrestlers with the condition were able to take on those twice their sizes. In Spike TV, '''''MANswers''', it was once believed a woman with dwarfism "[[http://www.spike.com/video-clips/kgw1zj/manswers-do-midget-hookers-charge-half-price offering guilty services]]" it's half price when they're actually the opposite... twice as costly than a normal-size woman due the rarity.

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[[folder: Professional Wrestling ]]

* Many midget wrestlers like Wrestling/{{Hornswoggle}} and most recently, El Torito, have proven a challenge, even joining the RoyalRumble through Wrestling/{{Fandango}} had the embarrassment of being eliminated by the latter.

'''SNES owners'''

Back in the 1990's Sega had made a very succesful advertising campaign in which the SegaGenesis was seen as superior to the SNES. This led to a lot of people who had a SNES being mocked for playing with a "kiddie console which is inferior to the Genesis". Eventually, Sega was unable to make consoles, the great games for the SNES were rediscovered and the people who played on it are nowadays seen as awesome.

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[[folder: Advertising ]]

* [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3xZUSr2JAM This]] ''VideoGame/SonicTheHedgehog'' commercial might just show as how [[SarcasmMode "great"]] nintendo fanboys were seen back then.

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[[folder: Real Life ]]

* A Sony focus group found that teenage boys would not want to admit to owning a Super NES. Most teenagers preferred to say that they owned a Genesis.


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