Here’s part two of the words that MW and Oxford should just do away with. While we’re at it… maybe Urban Dictionary could take a note also.
The N word. Oh my gosh. Of all of the words in the English language in our broad vernacular, this is perhaps one that is so reminiscent of nails on a chalkboard that I get chills just thinking about it. And yet, it’s become something of a term of endearment that young people in our community use on the DAILY.
It’s odd to me, that if this word is used one African American to another somehow it’s less offensive. Here’s what I know about this word — and mind you I am but just one perspective. The “N” word is something that for me brings my thinking back to the pre Civil War slavery, it brings me to the Civil Rights Movement, judgements made based on skin color. A time that interracial dating and marriage was taboo. A time when the KKK was supported. I really can’t imagine what would have happened to me had I used that word growing up. I imagine that I would have faced a mouthful of soap from my parents and would have been looked at differently by my peers.
I imagine that the “N” word might do that for many… but here’s the big question. Where does that word take our young people. How did it become a word that is used in everyday conversation without the consideration of how it had been used in the past? Perhaps there is an argument to be made for taking its “power” away? I don’t know. What I know is I am living in a time where the racial divide seems to be growing right in front of my eyes and as we near 2015 I am simply struck by the fact that we just can’t seem to move past where we’ve been.
I’d suggest, that we take charge of the language we use toward one and other, take charge of how we choose to treat each other. Be intentional about what comes out of our mouths. We can’t simply continue to spew trash at each other and expect that we’ll reap a culture of compassion and kindness. It just doesn’t work that way.
I am including a link here for consideration… I hope you consider that the “R” word and the “N” word have no place being in our words.