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I Am Not Your N-Word, Part Two

By Dr. Gloria Latimore-Peace

Presented by Omni-University

"What white people have to do, is try and figure out in their hearts why it was necessary to have a nigger in the first place, because I'm not a nigger, I'm a man..." Ancestor James Baldwin in "I Am Not Your Negro".

When I began writing "I Am Not Your N-Word" Part One, I hadn't intended to weigh in on the "pros" or "cons'' of a single n-word but, to raise our community's awareness of those undercover agents that had not yet been brought to light. Among the most important attributes of these abstractions is that they can be used to disrespect us to our faces because the variants do not always begin with the letter "n". Folks can be "cussing us out" all over national television, while using socially- approved "racial slurs", yet it doesn't always seem to register with us that they are signifying, i.e., "playing the dozens - not only with the lives of the present generation- but also, with those of our ancestors and progeny as well. What makes this state- of- affairs even worse, is that we are thereby compelled to continually struggle to convert one particular "term of defilement" into a "term of endearment". But, they ain't hardly playing" and we can't afford to either.

The propensity of white people to invent and use a barrage of n-words in their unrelenting assault on our personhood persists. This obsession is apparently rooted in the myth of "white superiority/ "negro" inferiority"- an unsubstantiated claim that has been demonstrably discredited .

"Back in the Day", we could more readily recognize when we were being called "out of our names" by references that had the same inferiorizing effect as "nigger" - n-words like "you people", for example. It wasn't lost on us that being called a "boy" or a "girl", as an adult man or woman, was the same as being called the n-word. Eventually, we would come into the knowledge that virtually every name, psychological, or sociological term that had been, or is in the process of being assigned to us- by those who conceive of themselves as our "betters"' is contaminated with degradation. Compound n - words,like "endangered species", serve as yet another means of encoding nigger. No matter how cleverly they are blended into the prevailing nomenclature these stealth attempts at de-humanizing us must be apprehended.

Thus, it is incumbent upon us to guard against falling prey to Cultural amnesia - to losing our grip on our history or our reality. We must never "dis-remember" the "way-back time of kings and queens who ruled the Nile and raised the pyramids..."[1].

Perhaps the most insidious of all these repositories of hate is the n-word known as slave, a label that has plagued us for over 500 years! Black people were deliberately and deceptively mis-categorized in an effort to justify the exploitation of Black Lives and Black labor as well as to cover up the fact that human Beings - not animals or chattel or "commodities"- were being held captive by criminal acts "that would disgrace a nation of savages"[2].

As we review this defining act of Humanicide, it is our hope that we can liberate ourselves and our minds from this n-word and its auxiliaries as well as from the hoax that it embodies which is the false notion that American "masters brought "slaves" out of Africa. The "real deal" about the so-called "slave trade" is that free black people were kidnapped and cargoed to the "new world"[3] to "build the wealth of The continents of Europe, America, and Africa"[4]

This is the subject of the following discussion between my colleague, Prof. Hunter Havlin Adams III and myself on The H30 Art of Life Show.

Please watch, and reflect upon, "The Greatest Frame-Up" (shown below). We ask that you continue to comment, subscribe, and share The H3O Art of Life Blog on your social platforms and by other means. The texts and emails that we receive from our readers are very gratifying. We appreciate your support.

Dr. Gloria Latimore-Peace,

Founder, Omni-U Virtual University


[1] "What Shall I Tell My Children Who Are Black...?" in Life With Margaret: The Official Autobiography of Dr. Margaret T.G Burroughs by Ancestor Dr. Margaret Taylor Goss Burroughs

[2] "What to a Slave is the Fourth of July?" Speech by Ancestor Frederick Douglass in Rochester, N.Y., July 5, 1852 (Read by James Earl Jones)

[3] The Race: Matters Concerning Pan Afrikan History, Culture and Genocide, edited by Kiarri T.-H. Cheatwood

[4] Op cit, Burroughs

See also Selected Readings: "I Am Not Your N- Word" Part One.

Selected Reading

Adams ,Hunter Havlin III. ( forthcoming) We Were Never Slaves.

Adams, Hunter Havlin III. "On Stemming the Tide of 500 Years of Humanicide: Re-envisioning Africana Emancipatory Life Theory" in The Eternal Year Of African People.

Adams, Hunter Havlin III. "Maat: Return to Virtue- Return to Self". Lecture, 1993 Parliament of World Religions, Chicago.

Conrad, Earl, "The Invention of the Negro":

Van Evrie, J.H. Negroes and Negro "Slavery": The first and Inferior Race-- The Latter Its Normal Condition.

Sanchez, Sonya, "Speak the Truth to the People".

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