Tag Archives: opinion

Debate This: Is Negro a “bad” word?

Here’s a comment we  received yesterday:

62 years old; grandma; white…

Something has me troubled. This seems like the perfect place to collect some input on it:

In a conversation with my daughter and son-in-law the other day I used the word “negro.” They were aghast and horrified. I was not being disrespectful and, frankly, I have long found the word to be rather elegant.

I’d like an African-American’s point-of-view on that.

Thanks.

Pam

Well, African-Americans…What do you think?  Is “negro” a bad word?  Should this 62 year old grandmother refrain from using it.

I will say, for her generation Negro was far more dignified than Ni**er.  Now if she’d referred to black folk as “Colored”…then I could understand her daughter and son-in-law’s  reaction.  In her prime years, the term “African-American” didn’t even exist and being “Black” was new.  My dad said,  When he was a kid some people would get made if you called them “Black” (as in “Blackey” or “You ole black so-in-so!”).

Over the last few years of doing this blog we’ve received several comments from people who feel that the name of this blog is offensive.  Someone even wrote that Negro was equal to the other N-word.  “Negro” is used everyday in Spanish speaking countries.  Caucasian would be the white equivalent…no one is calling for a ban on that.  We don’t see any thing wrong with the word, however we would suggest that when referring to African-Americans one use “African-American” or “Black”.   Very PC.

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Note to Sarah Palin: Everybody talks sh** outside of the ring…

…, but it’s when you get in the ring and face your opponent alone (without the benefit of speech writers like former George W. Bush scribe Matthew Scully) that the public will really be able to see how you fight you battles, and if you have the stuff in you to win, to be a true champion.  You will not have the benefit of these well crafted words when you debate.  You’ve set the bar very high with that speech.  Your Republican supporters will expect much of the same, just like a reigning champ.  There’s nothing like seeing the champ go down, huh?

I think you would have done better explaining yourself and who you will be as a VP than trying to just cut down Obama and Biden.  I thought that was Rudy’s job, he’s gotten quite good at it over the last year when it comes to Obama.

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Friday Question: What should be done about black youth and education?

Black youth are not getting a quality education in many of the major centers of black life in this country (NYC, ATL, DC, Baltimore, Cleveland, St. Louis, Chicago, etc.) Not to mention all across the south. Nationally, the graduation rate is 53 percent; in contrast, the graduation rate of what schools call “underrepresented minorities” – blacks, Latinos and American Indians – is 45 percent. In California alone, 41.3 percent African-American students drop out of high school.

If these children are not prepared to graduate from high school and don’t attend college or get some form of higher education…what will be their prospects for the future? Will they end up with low paying jobs, find crime as a way to support themselves, or just fade into the new face of U.S. poverty. A recent study on the bulging prison system noted, “One in 100 Americans is behind bars in 2008, about 2.4 million people currently are incarcerated and nearly 60 percent of young black males who dropped out of high school have served time in jail

What will happen to the young people who do not receive a REAL “education” from America’s public school system?

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Friday Question: Is Obama Addressing Black America’s Issues?

This article brings up a good question for our discussion this friday.

HAS OBAMA ADDRESSED BLACK ISSUES? by CASH MICHAELS
The Wilmington Journal

Beyond the need for the black family to be strengthened, and errant black fathers in struggling inner cities to help rear their children, has Sen. Barack Obama addressed other serious policy issues specific to the African-American community, or has he, as Rev. Jesse Jackson has suggested, engaged only in “talking down to blacks”?

The answer can be found on YouTube (www.youtube.com), the popular Internet video site, where a four-part, “Obama w/Black Press” video of the Democratic presumptive presidential nominee speaking to publishers and reporters with the NC Black Publishers Association (NCBPA) three months ago can be found (go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1NA4T0F-rU to view).

Taped April 29 at the Lawrence Joel Coliseum Annex in Winston-Salem, NC by The Carolinian/Wilmington Journal newspapers before his crucial May 6 primary victory against then Democratic rival Sen. Hillary Clinton, Obama, who was accompanied by renowned historian Dr. John Hope Franklin, delved head-on into critical issues such as affordable healthcare; civil rights enforcement and criminal justice; the importance of early childhood education; restructuring the Small Business Administration to help African-American, women-owned and other small enterprises; job opportunities, the mortgage meltdown; rising energy prices and more…Full Article

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Been Watching CNN’s Black in America?

What do you guys think so far of “Black in America“?  Are they telling you things you already know as an African American?  Do you think the content of the shows will help non-blacks have some insight into what it truly is to be “Black in America”?  Do you think the content is watered down, right on point, or TMI?

Are you like me and feel that the timing of this has a lot to do with getting people ready (warming them up) for a black president?

I’m looking forward to the “Black Woman & the Family” episode tonight @ 9pm.  How about you?

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Whoopi says the N-word on the view, Hasselbeck cries

Jesse just had to say the n-word, didn’t he, dag. Anyway…In many ways, they are both right. It’s funny to me how black and white America sometimes assume they know the other side so very well.

Whoopi said…”No, no, I, I want you to. But what I need you to understand is the frustration that goes along when you say we live in the same world. It isn’t balanced. And we would like it to be. But you have to understand, you have to listen to the fact that we’re telling you, there are issues, there are huge problems that still affect us. And you’ve got to know this if you want to know us.”

Around that time Elisabeth started to cry and asked “how are we supposed to then move forward if we keep using terms that bring back that pain?” Um Liz…bring back the pain??? The pain is here all the time. From hair care products, to shows on NBC with no black charaters written as if we don’t exist except as background characters (yes…I know they’ve gotten a bit better), to “No Child Left Behind” programs in urban areas graduating black children without an education. It’s called institutional racism. In my opinion, as a white women, you can’t fully and totally possibly understand a black woman’s point of view on the subject, and no one really expects you to. Sigh…Click here for the whole transcript. In the end, Elizabeth missed the last point Whoopi was making that she needed to acknowledge what Whoopi was saying as her true and honest feelings instead of trying to get her to understand how wrong she feels the n-word is. She just kept talking…you have to listen to learn.

The problem in my eyes…the converstation is not one that can be entered in lightly. It has to be framed in understanding and mutual respect for points of view that will vastly differ. That is difficult…especially on network TV.

Note: Barbara Walters used the opportunity to promote Obama’s candidacy opining “Barack Obama and others…are trying to move forward.” Come on Barb…that’s all you have to say?!?! LOL

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Friday Question: Recession or Depression?

Today’s question:  Are we (ie the U.S of A) in a Recession or a Depression? From good ole Wikipedia…

“A recession may involve simultaneous declines in coincident measures of overall economic activity such as employment, investment, and corporate profits. Recessions may be associated with falling prices (deflation), or, alternatively, sharply rising prices (inflation) in a process known as stagflation. A severe or long recession is referred to as an economic depression. Although the distinction between a recession and a depression is not clearly defined, it is often said that a decline in GDP of more than 10% constitutes a depression.[1] A devastating breakdown of an economy (essentially, a severe depression, or hyperinflation, depending on the circumstances) is called economic collapse.”

“In economics, a depression is a term commonly used for a sustained downturn in the economy. It is more severe than a recession (which is seen as a normal downturn in the business cycle). Considered a rare but extreme form of recession, the start of a depression is characterized by unusual increases in unemployment, restriction of credit, shrinking output and investment, price deflation or hyperinflation, numerous bankruptcies, reduced amounts of trade and commerce, as well as violent currency devaluations. Unlike a recession, there is no official definition for a depression, even though some have been proposed. Generally it is marked by a substantial and sustained shortfall of the ability to purchase goods relative to the amount that could be produced given current resources and technology (potential output). One could say that while a recession refers to the economy “falling down,” a depression is a matter of “not being able to get up.””

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