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 idea: "specialist" instead of "slave" 
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Bug Catcher
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Joined: Tue May 20, 2008 2:29 am
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Location: New Jersey, USA
I love Psypoke... thanks to everyone who makes this site great!

One day I wondered: "Hmmm.... are there any Pokemon that can learn 6 or 7 or ALL of a given game's HMs?" As I often do, I turned here. I was thrilled to find a few suggestions (depending on which generation), but aghast to hear that the common term for this is called "slaves".

I thought hard to find a word that didn't have such a negative connotation. (I don't know about you, but I don't plan to have any slaves help me in my real life... why would I want them in my Pokemon party?)

Here's the term I decided to use: "specialist". Need a "Sea Travel Specialist"? Train up a Bibarel or Golduck with Surf, Whirlpool, and Waterfall.

I like the term and also use it for other specific purposes other than just HMs:
  • My "Spelunkling Specialists" would be one or two Pokemon which together know Flash, Dig, Strength, Rock Smash, and maybe Rock Climb.

  • My "Capture Specialist" knows False Swipe, with Spore and/or Thundershock.... perhaps a Parasect or Scyther.


Anyway, I just wanted to put the idea out there. If the term catches on... that would be great!


Sat Apr 10, 2010 8:11 pm
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Ace Trainer
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Kudos on being the first ever Pokemon Rights Activist. I don't think it's that big a deal really. No one should be offended by the word "slave" because that's all it is, a word. This word has only recieved a negative connatation because of the people/groups it was put in use to describe. The term slave has no inherent capacity of being a bad word or negative description; it depends entirely on how you are using the word. And who's to say slaves are bad? Slaves help us get things done. Look at the pyramids: built by slaves, still standing after all this time, and certainly masterpieces of the ancient world and marvels of modern society. Slaves can do great work; it's when you decide to label slaves as inferior that an issue of offense occurs. And look at sex slaves; those are great, too. That, however, is an entirely different subtopic. And to address your renaming as "specialists;" does that not give a bad connotation to current everyday specialists? If you change the term for use in one situation, it must be enforced where applicable. Therefore, slaves = specialists whereas specialists can range from any number of fields of interest. Do you think they'd like to be called slaves? And how about people who could be labeled slaves in the way we think of them. Do we have to change their names, too? "Labor specialist" probably won't sit well with someone in a position of such subjugation.

Slave is a great term; people will always know exactly what you mean when you say that. If it needed to be changed, I would suggest "servant" but I feel some people would take just as much offense to that term. Basically, it's just a word; words cannot hurt people, and if they do then they were weak to begin with.

P.S. I'm not attacking you in anyway, I'm just presenting a counter-argument.

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Sun Apr 11, 2010 7:12 am
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Gym Leader
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I agree that slave is too negative a term. I call my HM "slaves" my hitches.

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Sun Apr 11, 2010 7:19 am
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Psychic Trainer
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I laughed so had when I read that.

Honestly, it's just a word though, and words don't hurt pokemon; hackers hurt pokemon.

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Sun Apr 11, 2010 2:57 pm
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Gym Leader
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Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2005 6:59 pm
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Named my {bibarel} HM Hunk.

I wish they would HMs in an entirely different way. Instead of making your pokemon learn HMs they should use a action bar..

Lets say you have Blastoise with this moveset.

- Rain Dance
- Headbutt
- Water Gun
- Toxic

You want to use surf but don't want Blastoise to learn it permanently. The action bar will find a pokemon in your party that can learn the HM moves, this way your not forced to sacrifice your perfect team/moveset.

Of course, you can still teach HMs to pokemon if you like.

Weird Idea but I think it would work.

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Sun Apr 11, 2010 7:27 pm
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Bug Catcher
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Joined: Tue May 20, 2008 2:29 am
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Emin Jofit wrote:
No one should be offended by the word "slave"....


Umm... ok. But I'm not saying the word is evil, or itself offensive. However, I think most people would agree "being one" is not a good place to be.

But the original post was not about how my Pokemon "feel" about the term. It's about how I feel about the term. I wouldn't -- even jokingly -- call an actual person working for me or helping me out somehow "my slave". If slavery was still allowed somewhere in the world, and some distant, slave-owning relative of my died and left me their slaves, I would be mortified to know that I now actually own another human being. The whole institution is a pretty ugly part of human history. Really.

Heck, I own my pets -- probably a good analogy to Pokemon, as the are critters that I own, and could give away or trade as I see fit -- but I still wouldn't call them "slaves".

Now the fact that I so strongly against using the term for my silly digital Pokemon inside my silly DS, well, THAT might be a bit oversenstive, I admit! :)

Anyway, I'll continue to call my specially trained Pokemon "specialists".... although I do like "HM Hunk"!!! (Although I think my Bibarel is a female.... I guess I could call her my "HM Babe". Interestingly: that term doesn't bother me as sexist in the slightest! LOL...)


Wed Apr 14, 2010 7:12 am
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Bug Catcher
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A rights activist for pixels (snicker). That slaps me on the knee. By the way, the word itself is not really negative, just the employment of said workers. So being called a slave is not bad. Do not be confused, actually being a slave is bad. And so is being the employer of slaves. Unless in certain cases when the slave is not actually a slave. Like when they are pixels on a screen. So call it a slave if you want, it's not like it's any worse than taking pleasure in stuffing animals into small spherical objects and forcing them to fight to the point of exhaustion.

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Fri Apr 16, 2010 8:19 pm
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