While making a routine check in the central government complex formerly known as Cohen Brothers, Eye on Jacksonville learned the politicians have a new rebranding effort under way.
The city’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report is getting a new label.
The reason is hilarious.
We sought the report to get some up to date financial numbers. Although it is due six months after the end of the fiscal year, which means March 31, in the past few years, the report has been late.
This year, it is really late. It still is unpublished and the state requires it to be published by June 30 so it looks like the city will have to request an extension.
Conspiracy theorists might suspect some number-juggling, but actually it is a problem with computers and personnel, the City Council’s Finance Committee has been advised.
So why rename the report?
It seems that it is routinely referred to as “CAFR” in conversation and when pronounced as written it sounds like “an offensive term in South Africa” we were told.
We assume the term they seek to avoid is “kaffir.”
This is defined by a liberal online encyclopedia as “an ethnic slur used to refer to black Africans in South Africa. In the form of cafri, it evolved during the pre-colonial period as an equivalent of ‘negro.’ In Southern Africa, the term was later used to refer to the Bantu peoples. This designation came to be considered a pejorative by the mid-20th century, and it is regarded as extremely offensive.
“In Southern Africa, it initially loosely referred to black Africans. The epithet kaffir has been actionable in the justice system of South Africa since 1976. In 2000, the South African parliament also enacted the Promotion of Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act, which has among its primary objectives the prevention of hate speech terms such as kaffir. When describing the term, the euphemism the K-word is now often used instead of kaffir.”
To avoid offending anyone in South Africa, the PC police are going to refer to the report as the “Annual Comprehensive Financial Report,” we have heard.
Unless “ackfer” causes offense in someplace like Bora Bora, everything should be fine.
We would have asked someone in the administration about this, but the term “Eye on Jacksonville” is offensive to Boss Lenny Curry and his minions are not allowed to speak to us.