posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 09:21 PM
I disagree with the OP in many ways. It certainly, albeit sadly, does have a place to today's society, which is why the word still survives and
thrives.. and evolves.
The idea behind the post seems to come from a moral high ground level of thought, which is fine if the idea behind it were simply social commentary
rather than going so far as to offer a solution (to stop using the word). This solution is completely unrealistic and downright offensive to me.
I personally would not tell anyone what to say or not to say. I don't particularly want to impose my will on anyone at all as per the golden rule
standard (at least, outside of the bed). Unless of course someone is attempting to impose their ways on me, in which case resistance is needed. (Sound
familiar?) The post did bring up the history of fighting and dying, now u would impose new codes of conduct on people outside of your group or race?
Isn't this another echo of the same old cycle?
The OP is, in fact, the most well intentioned and truly innocent racist remark I have heard.
Yes, black men and women DID resist, fight, and die for their equality. So it would be very unwise for a white man to use the n-word... ever. It is
simply insensitive and naive to do so. There is no double standard here. It is simply bad for white people to use the word and that is true for good
reasons which can be easily spelled out and shown. It is simply less bad for a black person to use it as a result of it being used against them. It's
really not a bad outcome if you take the weapon from your assailant. If I grabbed your gun somehow and survived while you robbed me, it would be
unwise for you to attempt to grab it back, for you may not survive like I did.
People have the right to say anything they want and they must accept the consequences of their words. This is especially true in the case of a group
who endured prolonged difficulty obtaining that right.
Lingo is a part of group cohesion. Professionals in many fields develop lingo that they use among themselves to describe their crafts in very useful
ways, but they don't use the same lingo in comparable situations outside when speaking to laymen. There is no double standard. Just respect it. In
this case I don't know how useful the word actually is since it has racial connotations rather than professional ones, but I think it does have a use
and role to play. It is a salutation. It can mean friend, brother, respect, or just recognition of another's existence. It is really not far away in
meaning than the word "dude" in its modern understanding. Only "dude" has never been wielded in that derogatory way.
I have always lived in a very inner urban environment that has no noticeable difference in a majority between the white and black population. This
environment has always presented me with a social network that has noticeably more black friends and acquaintances in it than white ones. I am white
and in my late 20's. I date inter-racially more often than not. Most of my friends salute me with the n-word as a word of friendship and even praise.
I do not return the same salutation. No one perceives any paradox because we understand it.
The word will continue to evolve. It is a process that is very unlikely to be sped up externally. Much of its potency has been stripped away from it.
Even a dummy knows when a white man is using words because of his racism, and when a black person is using words casually. Anyone of any race can
wield derogatory slang against others. The fighting and dying was for a cause that was much greater than just a word, so let's not cheapen that
All that being said, and keeping in mind we have the right to say anything we want - a right that should never be infringed upon - a racist should
accept the consequences of his racist remarks, so should a naive person (like a white kid using the word to fit in), and a black person has the right
to NOT use the word if his opinions/morals dictate that.