Hey friends. So as many of you know this channel is not just about laughing, it's also about learning. So, today I wanted to talk about the "N" word double standard. This is not a new conversation by any way shape or form, but it's one that's happened in the media and here on my channel especially, after my viral video, "Shit White Girls Say To Black Girls, 'You can say the N-word, but I can't. How is that okay?'"
But most recently the conversation come to light again, after Madonna got in some hot water when she posted a photo on Instagram of her son and captioned it with the N-word. Now this is not the first time this has happened, of course, you remember Gwyneth Paltrow and the infamous Paula Deen. And every time the conversation of a non-black person using the N-word comes up there's some common question and misunderstanding associated with it. I wanted to break them down and give you my perspective.
A little disclaimer: I do not speak for all black people. This is just based on my personal opinion and my life experience. So if you are not a black person and you use the N-word, I don't care if it ends in an ER or an A, chances are you're going to face some kind of backlash. And usually, the excuse is I've encountered offline and on starts with, "Well, the N-word is not really a racial slur. It doesn't mean black people. It means stupid." That is absolutely incorrect. the N-word comes from the Spanish and Portuguese word for black, negro.
How do you take a completely benign word, the word for black, and make it into a slur? Well, you have to look at the word's historical context. The N-word was used to describe black people as they were being stolen from Africa, put into slavery, chained, lynched, beaten, spit upon, so the word was created as a tool of oppression. It's historical context cannot be erased.
Who is allowed to say it? In reality, everyone is allowed to say whatever it is that they want to say, but there will always be consequences for your words and your actions, So depending on who you are and where you are there will be different consequences for what you say and do and this is not something that's just related to the N-word or was just specifically created for this word. This is a regular occurrence. It's a matter of in-group versus out-group dynamics. So when you're a member of a certain group there are things that are totally okay and socially acceptable when you're in that group. And for people outside of that group you give them the side-eye, and it's just not okay. For example, football players pat each other on the butt as a way to say like, "Good job," and no one thinks twice about it, and it's totally okay, but as soon as that football player steps off the field, if some random stranger walked up to them and started patting them on the butt they would not be okay with it, "Whoa, dude who are you? Why are you patting my butt? We're not playing football. You're not a football player. This is weird."
Something else I have encountered when it comes to talking about the N-word is the common idea that, "If you guys don't want people to say it then you should stop saying it." I actually heard this recently when I spoke at a college from one of the students at my talk and it was just like, "Pooosh! Black people don't do the same things or act the same way or use the same language." Personally, I don't use the N-word and I'm not going to begrudge anyone else that does it because you can talk about yourself however you want to. And there are some people that really believe that using the N-word is a way to reclaim it so I can act in defiance, you know, "You have used this horrible word to oppress me and keep me down, so I'm going to turn it around and change its meaning into something else."
Furthermore, all black people are not tapped into some hotline. There's not a number that I can call and make decisions about what we should all do, like, I can't call up Kendrick Lamar and be like, "Hey, Kendrick. I love m.A.A.d City but you use the N-word way too much and it's making us look bad. P.S. You got robbed at the Grammy's." That's not an option, and so, no. But the thing that bothers me the most is when people argue that, "It's just not fair. It's a double standard" that black people can use the N-word and everyone else can't.
The reason this is so much is it's completely self-serving and disingenuous. These people do not care about fairness or any of the disparities black people in this country and around the world face because if they did they wouldn't be arguing over the use of the N-word. Instead they'd focus on real problems like job discrimination, housing discrimination, racial profiling, police brutality, the school-to-prison pipeline, stop-and-frisk, the harsher prison sentences that black people and other minorities face. They would rather argue that it's not fair that there is social consequences for people that aren't black who use the N-word. Priorities, you has them.
So now I want to hear from you. What are your thoughts on the N-word "double standard." Let me know in the comments below. And whether you agree with me or disagree with me, let's try to keep this conversation civil and respectful. No name calling, no slurs, no vicious attacks because we ain't got time for that and if you cross the line you's gonna get blocked.
Don't forget I post new videos every Friday, so make sure to subscribe, and I will see you next week. Bye.There may be small errors in this transcript.