A word everyone is afraid to define except in utter seriousness, for fear of being branded racist, in total ignorance of the everyday usage of the word, it’s portrayal in popular culture, and the populations of the people it is used by. The definition of this word can be determined by the context and the quantifiers that are used before and after it. It is a word that can have a derogatory meaning or a complimentary meaning. It can be defined as a black person, a slave, or offensive slang.
It can also be defined as a brother, a friend, or cousin, if it is being used in a playful way. This word is also referred to as the “N” word. One can’t explain the guilt felt when even just typing the word Nigger. Although many African Americans support the use of the word “nigger” in certain circumstances, the mass majority of African Americans who lived in the times where whites used the word in order to degrade African Americans would passionately believe that the word “nigger” should be eliminated from all forms of language.
Consequently, people should never use the word “nigger” because not only does represent shamefulness, but also the word can serve as a double standard when non-blacks say it. Before the post-Civil Rights era, whites would frequently use the word “nigger” to social degrade and humiliate blacks. During this time, southern whites would commonly use the word “nigger” instead of “Negro” in order to represent superiority over the blacks.
This was especially common for slave owners to refer to their slaves as “niggers” in order to both debase the slaves below human beings and to show ownership over their lives. Even though racist slave owners and other whites called blacks “niggers” during slave times, southern whites also referred to blacks as “niggers” throughout more than half of 20th Century. Where did the word “nigger” originate? Honestly, the whereabouts of the birthplace of the word nigger is still being debated. The immersion of the word however will never be forgotten.
It would seem that “nigger” would come to be a derogatory nickname for African Americans. There has never, since the creation of the word “nigger”, been such a word that has had such an extensive impact. However, over the course of time, the “nigger” has evolved in pronunciation, usage, and meaning. “Nigger” is frequently traced to the Latin word niger, meaning black. The appearance of the word, at first, had no negative intentions. By the early 1800s it was established as a derogatory nickname. Ironically the area it was first used in this context in America, during slavery.
Whether spoken, written, or shown in the media, reflect on the mass network of the anti-black prejudice. “Nigger” carried with it the anger, hatred, and disgust with it. It was used as noun, verb, and adjective to enforce the stereotype of Blacks being ignorant, lazy, dirty, and worthless. “Nigger” was used to strengthen words such as: Niggerish, Nigger-flicker, Nigger rich, and many, many more. The ladder of power suggested that the intimidation, deceit, and exploitation of blacks, was to help keep them in their place.
From ministers to scientist the desire to prove that whites were superior to blacks was, in every way, socially acceptable. Of course with no choice but to take the demeaning abuse, blacks endured the ridicule. Even though the word “nigger” can represent a friendship between two blacks, there is definitely no need for the word ever to be used because if a white guy ever said what’s up “nigger” spontaneously to one of his black friends, then out of instinct the black guy would receive a derogatory connotation because it was a white guy using the word.
Now, how is it not a double standard if a black person can say the word “nigger” to another black person and the situation is normal, however if a white person refers to a black person as “nigger” than all hell breaks loose? If black people argue that this double standard is ok, then for example if it was socially acceptable for white people to refer to other white people as “crackers” but socially unacceptable for black people to refer to white people as “crackers. ” Civil rights organizations like the N. A. A. C. P. ould consider this racist of whites and file lawsuits for being discriminated against being allowed to refer to a white person as a “cracker. ” The use of the word “nigger” is forbidden on television and almost all forms of public television because “nigger” is considered to be a racial slur, however, the word “cracker” which is racial slur against whites is completely acceptable on all forms of public entertainment. Overall, whether the word “nigger” is used a friendly situation or with intent to degrade another black person, the word always carries a socially inappropriate connotation and should never be used.
Those blacks that argue that the word is acceptable under special circumstances when blacks use it amongst other blacks tend to be of youthful age and are completely naive and ignorant to the history and true definition of the word. To even consider referring to another human being of a different race as being worthless and less of a human being than myself is not only unethical, but also completely immoral. In addition, the double standard that the word possesses is entirely inappropriate because the idea that the color of a person’s skin grants him or her special permission to say certain words is just absurd.