…by Jonas E. Alexis
Georgia state Representative Jason Spencer is in deep doo-doo. He was filmed shouting the N-word repeatedly and exposing his buttocks on Sacha Baron Cohen’s new television show.
Obviously for a politician to drop his trousers and show his naked ass on camera is ground for discipline, if not firing. That just shows that these so-called Republicans will do just about anything for money. They have no morals, and all you have to do is sign them a check for a few thousand dollars and they’ll just do anything. Just look at how Netanyahu has progressively gotten the Republican Party in his right pocket.
But that is not what the media is focusing on right now. Race baiters are hinging on the idea that Jason Spencer should never have uttered the N-word because it presumes that Spencer is a bigot, a racist, or something equally weird. Those race baiters don’t even ask Sasha Cohen to cancel his program!
This has been a recurrent theme over the past decade or so. What the race baiters ended up saying is that only blacks can use the N-word, even in a derogatory sense.
This issue came into focus again in 2010 when radio host Laura Schlessinger commented that blacks frequently use the N-word and no one has ever gotten offended by it. In fact, Hollywood has made millions of dollars using the word. If you think this is far-fetched, then watch the recent movie Equalizer 2.
“Make sure you kill one of those niggas tonight,” said one black gangster to a naïve and fresh member who is just learning the ropes. Yet when whites use the N-word, red flags are immediately raised. That, to Schelessinger, is a double standard. And it is.
Although her conclusion was rational and balanced—not promoting racist sentiment at all—the media jumped on her. Mary C. Curtis, former writer and editor for the New York Times, wrote a ranting response, declaring, among other things, that “this is the word that people with ropes used as they lynched men and women for an afternoon’s entertainment.”
Yet Curtis failed to actually address the point Schelessinger was making. Instead of responding logically and rationally, she attacked purely fueled by outrage. If that the word indeed has such a horrific connotation, then why do rap artists, for example, continue to make millions of dollars using it, and where is Curtis when you really need her?
Curtis’s only answer is that “most black people I know hate the word and never use it.” Obviously that woman is living on a different planet. She almost certainly hasn’t turned on the radio in years! We would certainly advise her to do so because she has already made a fool of herself?
From a rational standpoint, these clumsy, emotionally-based reactions eventually lead to a thought police mentality. Historically, the word negro was not controversial until the latter part of the twentieth century. Black intellectuals during the 1950s and onward had no problem with it whatsoever, and the word was properly used in scholarly and academic works.
Harold Cruse’s influential book is entitled The Crisis of the Negro Intellectual; Henry Allen Bullock’s ground-shaking work was named A History of Negro Education in the South. Claude McKay used phrases such as “Nigger Hell” in his widely-read Home to Harlem. Jewish writer Norman Mailer had a famous essay entitled “The White Negro,” and Norman Podhoretz wrote one entitled “My Negro Problem.”
None of those people could be characterized as racists, given the record of their dealings with blacks. Moreover, Cruse was a black professor at the University of Michigan; Bullock was a black historian and sociologist at the University of Texas; McKay was a Jamaican-American writer. The words “Negro” and “Nigger” were not born out of racism, but simply described the language and context of the time.
Knee-jerk reactions like Curtis’s do not invite rational discussion, but, as Schlessinger rightly put it, merely display “hyper-sensitivity.” We need to grow up. We just can’t remain children for years.
As we have stated over and over, we need to use a universal system based on the moral law, not on what some groups have decided to believe. If we are going to enforce a law, then every single American has to abide by it. If certain principles can only be applied to certain people, then what kind of society do we want to build?
We will never make progress until we come to grip with this basic fact.
Jonas E. Alexis has degrees in mathematics and philosophy. He studied education at the graduate level. His main interests include U.S. foreign policy, the history of the Israel/Palestine conflict, and the history of ideas. He is the author of the new book, Kevin MacDonald’s Metaphysical Failure: A Philosophical, Historical, and Moral Critique of Evolutionary Psychology, Sociobiology, and Identity Politics. He teaches mathematics in South Korea.