Commentary: Who Said You Could Use the N-Word?

Commentary: Who Said You Could Use the N-Word?

A recently released viral video shows two teenage girls calling Black people "n*****s" and "stupid." Where are their parents?

Published February 22, 2012

For some reason people continue to think that it’s okay to use the n-word … and it’s not.

If you haven’t seen the most recent racist rant spreading across the web, brace yourself.

In the video, two teenage girls, both white, respond to critics who have disapproved of their previously posted racist videos.

Though they claim they aren’t racist, the girls stereotype “Black people” and say how much they hate them.

“They get their welfare checks, they get their food stamps … and they go and buy these expensive name-brand clothes, and then they don’t have enough money to pay for rent … it’s stupid,” one girl says.

Just when you thought the hateful comments would stop, the girls go on for almost 15 minutes and broadly characterize Blacks as “stupid” and “ignorant.”

“There's Black people, they're fine. They're educated, they go to school, they do what they have to do. Then there's n*****s who can't talk right, they keep having kids, they can't get jobs,” the first girl says.

What makes this video so sad is that these girls look like they are barely teenagers. With all the f- and n-words thrown, it makes me question, “Where are their parents?” There are only so many lessons that kids learn at school and through media. If your kids are throwing around f- and n-bombs, it may be time to question if you’re the problem. It should never be okay to teach our children hate, unacceptance and the usage of words that date back to racist minstrel shows.

When I was a child, I remember my fair-skinned grandmother telling me stories of how Caucasian kids would call her the n-word and throw rocks at her while passing on the school bus in the late 1920s. I would never image that, decades later, similar stories of hate are still taking place. Where are our priorities to teach future generations acceptance?

Just yesterday, it was reported that a middle school teacher used the “n-word” while teaching a history lesson. Though his justification was, “It's ridiculous to believe that sixth-graders aren't exposed to this language, not only in music but in their everyday lives,” that doesn’t mean that saying the word to teach a lesson is okay. No matter if Tyga or T.I. is saying it, if I’m a sixth grader and I hear my teacher, whom I look up to as a role model, saying “n****r,” I’m going to think it’s acceptable to say it and have other people say it to me.

We may hear it often, but what most people fail to remember is that the “n-word” conversation stretches beyond just the word. It unearths a hurtful past, when Blacks were whipped and denied access to opportunities simply because of the color of the skin. Continuing to use it, whether in the classroom, in a song or online, simply keeps the demon of discrimination alive.

Why are we trying to bring hell back to earth?

The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of BET Networks.

BET National News - Keep up to date with breaking news stories from around the nation, including headlines from the hip hop and entertainment world.

(Photo: Lia Eustachewich /AP/File)

Written by Danielle Wright

COMMENTS

Latest in news