WHO CAN USE THE “N” WORD?

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According to the African American Registry “the word ‘nigger’ is often traced to the Latin word niger, meaning Black. This word became the noun, Negro (Black person) in English, and simply the color Black in Spanish and Portuguese. In early modern French, niger became negre and, later, negress (Black woman) was unmistakably a part of language history. One can compare negre to the derogatory nigger and earlier English substitutes such as negar, neegar, neger, and niggor that developed into its lexico-semantic true version in English. It is probable that nigger is a phonetic spelling of the White Southern mispronunciation of Negro.”

Today, the term “nigger” has come to mean a derogatory term for a Black person, given to them by white people. It is also considered negative by some Black people. Rappers and other popular African Americans use the name liberally whenever they feel like it. Some of them say the term is one of “endearment” when used by one Black person toward another one. This does not hold water, however, since Black people also use this term when cursing each other out.

Some performers, especially gangsta’ rappers, use the word freely. Consider the following lyrics from an album by Murder Mike and Du-Rag: INTRO: Yeah, mother-bucker; Sup, nigga; Gangsta Rap, nigga Nigga. The song ends this way: ‘Cause I’m a nigga! I’m a mother*uckin nigga, man, I ain’t all that African-American sh!t; F*ck that I’m a nigga, I ain’t mixed, I’m a nigga; N…-I-G-G-A; Nigga, you already know. In an online article by Ben Westhoff entitled “The N-Word Still Alive and Well in Hip-Hop,” it reports that rapper Nas named his album Nigger. Nas says that “(we’re) taking power away from the word by using it.”

White people, on the other hand, get in hot water when using the word. In another online article by Luchina Fisher entitled “5 White Celebrities Whose Use of N-Word Backfired,” Madonna used the word as a term of endearment toward her son who is white and ended up having to apologize. Gwyneth Paltrow also found herself in the midst of criticism in the summer of 2012 after tweeting “Ni**as in Paris for real,” when referring to Jay-Z and Kanye West’s Paris performance of their very popular song, “Ni**as in Paris.” The actress countered her critics, tweeting, “Hold up. It’s the title of the song!”

Other white celebs who have come under fire for using the “N” word include Charlie Sheen, who used it in a derogatory manner against his ex-wife; Paris Hilton in a video circulated online showing her and her sister Nicky dancing to Notorious B.I.G.’s “Hypnotize,” wherein she exclaims to the camera, “We’re like two n****rs.” Tim Allen, “Home Improvement” star generated controversy after he openly talked about why he should be able to use the n-word. “I’ve had this argument on stage a million times,” Allen told the Tampa Bay Times. “I do a movie with Martin Lawrence and pretty soon they’re referring to me, ‘hey my n****r what’s up.’ So I’m the n****r’ if I’m around you guys but 7 feet away, if I said n****r, it’s not right. It’s very confusing to the European mind how that works….” “If I have no intent, if I show no intent, if I clearly am not a racist, then how can ‘n****r’ be bad coming out of my mouth?” asked Allen.

Basically, if looked at logically, it makes NO SENSE for some people to be able to use the word freely, while others are not. According to the aforementioned article, Ice-T once said: “If you are it, you can use it.” NOT. It does not matter if it is used by Black, white, purple, blue, yellow or red people, a negative word is a negative word. Period. This is especially true when Blacks who say they are using it as a term of endearment turn around and use it in a derogatory manner on each other. Some whites have even come under fire for repeating the lyrics to a song written by a Black person that has the word in it. This is ridiculous and smacks of pure hypocrisy!

We have to make up our minds; either nigger is an abhorrent term that should not be used at all, or we should relax and ignore centuries of derogatory use and let it morph into an acceptable term that can be used by EVERYONE. It’s either or, not both/and. Logic would dictate, however, that it will not be totally possible to extricate it from its negative connotation. Because of this, perhaps no one should use it. A Luta Continua.

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1 COMMENT

  1. According to U.S. identification where I was born, I am an African American or black man. From a young boy, I hated hearing black people call other black people Nigga. REGARDLESS of what black rappers or movie stars say, the word nigga is not used as a term of endearment, it is not being evolved into or taken back by black people who use it freely towards one another as a positive word. It is pure and simple lucrative hypocrisy. So, please do not believe their hype. Do something about it because it is a poison that is negatively affection our world. The widespread ignorance of many black people who call other black people nigga with a smile on their face or whether it is a group of black men and women beating down another black person while saying “kill that nigga, yo” is a wide spread sickness that it taking over this world. It is affecting your child and the future of our children with their sickness, their depravity, and with their ignorant hypocrisy. Everyone who is in a position to act against this cancer that is growing must do something against this wave of social sickness. Demand 3JJJ (107.5) to cease playing gangasta rap music that preaches hate and violence and disdain by the black “artist” who is spewing out nigga like a fountain. Do you want your child to drink from that deeply sick and poisoned fountain? It will negatively affect your child’s life to treat and think of anyone with disdain, hate, and contempt. Do something against this tidal wave of sickness now before it gains more power. I am doing a lot but I CANNOT DO THIS ALONE. I NEED YOUR H-E-L-P to fight this social plague. I am working on sending a strong, powerful, and clear message to every radio station and every social media platform to at least “bleep” out the N-Word in all music that is aired over the public radio or don’t play those “artists” poison at all. I have two Websites ALM2020 and The Brother Down Under. Please do your part to resist this N-Word social cancer that is having a tremendous negative impact on our world and in our communities. Thank you.

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