Nigga. A five-letter word with such powerful meaning.
It can mean friend to some, but it can be an insult to others.
Hmm, “Nigga please. I’m black so I can say it!” That sounds right. Right?
Nigga has a demeaning past. The word started off as nigger and was used as an insult to offend all blacks and anyone else called by that name.
But later it was changed to Negro to define what our race was; Negro-American. Personally, I prefer African-American; you aren’t going to call me anything that relates to the word nigger.
So with saying that, why do we call our associates niggas, but when a white person does it we can’t handle them saying it. Maybe it’s because they are white, right. And when they say it they mean it differently.
No, that’s not the case at all. Most white people I have spoken to tell me they mean it the same exact way that we mean it – as friend. So how can we get upset when we as a people have influenced our generation to use that word so loosely without knowing its roots?
How can we as African-Americans ignore our roots to the point that we can stand and ignore MLK Jr. and the ones who came before us who wouldn’t let anybody just speak to us a certain way.
We have to do better. We want to be the only ones who can say that word, but then get mad when we aren’t treated equally.
Being treated equally means that not only I, an African-American woman, get to say that word, but my Caucasian best friend does as well, and we can’t be upset with that. So those of you who seem to forget your roots and go with the ways of the world, don’t get mad when we are treated unfairly because that was you who influenced that type of behavior in your life.
Next time, look up the meaning of nigga before you throw it around loosely.
Yarica Charleston is a junior mass communication major from Fort Worth, Texas.