The history of change will forever be written in blood. I wished and prayed that no one would have to die for us to start talking about race, but it happened anyway.
Why can’t white people use the n-word?
It’s okay to sing along to rap songs as long as you don’t say the N-word. It’s okay to use ‘black’ and ‘African American’, but not the N-word—not if you’re not black. Now, some white people might call this a double standard. And it is. For centuries to present day, the word “Nigger” has been used by Whites to demean, humiliate, castrate and dehumanize people of African ancestry. No other term in the annals of history is as evocative, provocative as the word “Nigger”. That word has continued to be used to justify every inhumane and ungodly act another human being can perpetrate upon another including, unpaid labor, forced incarceration, torture, murder and genocide. My guess is we deserve to have at least one double standard.
Amongst the culture, some of us find the N-word a difficult word to embrace in any form. I was of that mind for the majority of my life. Witnessing how we as people are treated in this country, in this world of ours, I can no longer countenance the gall. It’s not enough to treat us like “Niggers” but you want now to demand the right to call us one to our face. I’ll speak in an idiom you can understand. This Nigga’s not having it. The N-word is ours to use. We’ve reclaimed it in all of its forms and iterations. And if that still troubles you, I’d like for you to take a moment and to ask yourself, honestly before daring to ask again, what is the worst thing I can call you as a Caucasian that would be remotely as dastardly, as evil and vile as the N-word?
What’s wrong with “All Lives Matter”?
Social media is rife with the slogan “All Lives Matter” or “Blue Lives Matter” as if the “Black Lives Matter” slogan is somehow anathema to America.
My question is, if “All Lives Matter”, and “Blue Lives Matter”, conversely shouldn’t “Black Lives Matter”? And since “Black Lives”, were the lives under threat by “Blue Lives”, then the least “All Lives” and “Blue Lives” could do is support “Black Lives.” No?
So let me get this straight. You, as the race that has primarily subjected all other races, would prefer we refrain from saying “Black Lives Matter” as “All Lives”, especially “Blue Lives Matter”, because our assertion that our lives matter is somehow exclusionary to all other lives. How can that be so? Aren’t you doing the very thing you are accusing us of by your unwillingness to affirm “Black Lives Matter”, while at the same time “affirming “Blue Lives?” And again, Blues Lives are the ones taking black lives at exponentially disproportionate rates compared to that of your own. That literally makes no sense.
As I understand it, the problem is not with police killing unarmed men, women, and children of color. The problem is with the “Black Lives Movement” not affirming everyone’s right because not doing so somehow “makes you feel” bad because we didn’t explicitly say your life matters too. But to be clear, you have no problem supporting the ones that are taking Black lives.
Asserting “All Lives Matter ” in the middle of a “Black Lives Matter Movement ” is pretty much like shouting all lives need to be saved in the middle of a maelstrom, and your life is not in jeopardy. What would be the point? Unless the point is to distract from the original issue, which always comes back to “Black Lives” not necessarily “All”, and “Blue Lives” are not under the same threat.
Also, the argument supposes that America is this Utopia where all races are treated equally. That was “never” the case. Some ethnicities, or races have managed to assimilate at a much faster clip, while others are still waiting to. The Hispanic, Latin, Asian, European, or Native American experience is the same as the African American experience. And even amongst each group, there are subsets who have radically different experiences.
This imaginative reuse is a false equivalency. The fact of the matter is, oversimplified or not America is not the melting pot that it claims to be. If all races were being murdered by law enforcement at an equivalent rate, then and only then can someone make the case for an “All Lives Matter Movement ” But that isn’t never has been the case. More importantly, one movement does not diminish the other. If white lives were being taken disproportionately by the police, then it would be about “White Lives Mattering,” and all races standing with “White Lives” in solidarity. But we know full well that’s not the issue at hand. Therefore, everything leads back to one conclusion, and that is, the ‘All Lives Matter’ and the “Blue Lives Matter” campaigns were initiated to distract from the movement’s momentum, fracture and splinter the coalition that has shaken the world. Lastly, the vitriol surrounding “BLM” as proven by the events of January 6th certainly had nothing to do with affirming the value of “Blue Lives”, or “All Lives’ ‘, for that matter. It’s just the expression that All Lives or Blue Lives Matter seems less unlikely than the alternative “Black Lives Don’t matter (BLDM).
As a white person, how am I privileged?
White privilege is real, believe you, me. It has defined the trajectory of my life, and I know for a fact that whether or not you admit it, it has changed the trajectory of yours. It doesn’t have to be to a great extent. The way to understand White privilege is to imagine that we are both in a race. A race, which a millisecond of time can decide the difference between you and I winning or losing the race. Let’s say we both were to start the race from exactly the same fixed position. We both were exceptionally prepared for the event. Prior to the event, our diet and exercise were similar. Just before the race the racers to the left of you were given a slight handicap. Maybe their big toe was allowed ahead of the line, or something as seemingly innocuous as that. But in a race, that can be decided by milliseconds, that is all one person might need to win the race.
White privilege is walking inside a bank without everyone assuming you are there to rob the place or having the guard watch your every move, not ever having to worry that a simple traffic stop can turn deadly. White privilege are the microaggressions you may never have to suffer. White privilege is getting the benefit of the doubt over someone that looks like me. White privilege is the freedom to think that you are not privileged despite all evidence to the contrary.
I’m reclaiming the N-word and letting a couple others fly in the Diary of an Angry Black Man. Check out my enraged tell-all to find the answer to all the other questions you have about race and racism as a white person living in America.
Read as I answer the thornier questions you might be too afraid to ask due to expectations about the controversial nature of this topic. Stay tuned for the release date by subscribing to the newsletter or following me on social channels like LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.