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I have been told that it's a racist derogatory term.

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  • I've never heard this one. Are you sure it's English? – Ian MacDonald Mar 4 '15 at 19:03
  • Welcome to the EL&U website! Please visit this link to take tour and learn about asking good questions. – Minnow Mar 4 '15 at 19:19
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If someone told you it is a racist derogatory term, they are probably referring to red-haired-individuals.

In some countries like the UK, ginga (pronnounced jin-ja, not gin-ga) is a slang form of "Ginger".

See Urban Dictionary Ginga

Slang U.K Ginger

See Wikipedia Red Hair - Modern-day discrimination

In British English, the words "ginger" or "ginga" are sometimes used to describe red-headed people (and are at times considered insulting)

Some other countries from English speaking history like Australia, has similar slang but it's "Ranga" as in "Orangatang" implying the orange/red hair the animals have.

See Urban Dictionary Ranga

a person who has red or orange hair

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  • I upvoted you but ELU really requires supporting references and links. Please add, when you can. You'll be glad you did. – user98990 Mar 5 '15 at 4:32
  • @LittleEva ok, I added references, but is Urban Dictionary even remotely a valid source? I suppose for slang it must be. – RenaissanceProgrammer Mar 5 '15 at 17:08
  • The UD is great for some definitions, not so much for others. Best to cross-reference. Tip: your links will look better on the page if you format thus - [NAME of SOURCE](URL). – user98990 Mar 5 '15 at 17:50
  • Also, ELU strongly recommends (insists, actually) we include our citations "in text" at some appropriate place in your answer because a bare [link] is subject to link "rot" and will then be of little avail to any reader. So, foe example, I will write; see, Urban Dictionary "ginga" [LINK](URL). – user98990 Mar 5 '15 at 19:23
  • @LittleEva ok that last comment is a bit confusing, can you confirm I did it ok? – RenaissanceProgrammer Mar 5 '15 at 19:46

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