The “N” word is a derogatory term and insult that has been used throughout the course of history to demean and degrade black people as a whole. Many people feel passionately about this word because of the way that it has been used in the past, and many people have not come to a clear consensus as to whether or not the word should still be used. As I think of the “N” word, I am reminded of Dubois’ idea of “Double Consciousness”, which relates to white people’s stereotypes and preconceived notions of black people. This idea basically relates to the misrepresentation of black people, constantly putting them in a negative light. When many people think of the “N” word, they are reminded of the constant stigmatization that comes with being black and this double consciousness that has been created by the dominant race in society. It also reminds them of the egregious acts of hate and violence that African Americans had to endure for years. Another idea that the “N” word reminds people of is the idea of white supremacy or that the white race is the dominant race within society. Many black people are reminded of the various inequalities and discriminatory actions that black people are subject to experiencing because white supremacy. These are the main reasons why some are infuriated by the idea that people continue to use the “N” word.
Others in the black community tend to hold a different stance. The Hip Hop community has strived to take this derogatory term and transform it to a term of endearment. Many people feel that this word is no longer derogatory when the term is used in a loving or endearing context amongst black people. The debate also explores the idea as to whether or not other races can use the “N” word as a term of endearment as well. As an African American, I don’t really think that the “N” word should still continued to be used. Although I understand the point of view of those who use it as a term of endearment, I personally think that it is associated with too many painful and degrading ideas to be used as a term of endearment. Although the “N” word is a controversial topic, it is still an important topic that should be discussed and explored by society as a whole.