White people: your use of the N word

This is my first poll, so I don’t know if it’s possible or how to add it in but *I am curious about peoples ages…Anyway the question is this: have you or do you use the N-word “seriously”, by which I mean not quoting somebody else, not rapping, not kidding… But in a rude way With full racist intention.

  • Never once in my entire life.
  • A few times telling jokes as a child.
  • I am ashamed to say that I have used it casually where I felt safe to do so And I felt annoyance at some black person.
  • I use it now and then, It’s no big deal to me
  • I am Quentin Tarantino and I seek out opportunities, I create opportunities to use it I would use it for every verb adverb and adjective if I could… I think it’s the coolest word in the English language.

0 voters

Also does anybody know what it became “the N-word”? It doesn’t seem like it was all that long ago, maybe sometime in the last 10 years. It’s sort of annoys me, I don’t like to tiptoe around things that way so I get a little frustrated trying to decide whether to simply say it out loud or say “the N-word” when it comes up in conversation…

Other. I was hiking with my b.i.l. and meant to say “trigger” and the other word slipped out. Freudian slip. Not what I meant to say at all, and I was horribly embarrassed for half an hour. Holy Geeze, what if I’d been speaking to an audience?

It’s such a horrible, hateful word, I even dislike discussing it. I’m certain I used the word as a child, I’m sad to say, while doing “eenie, meenie, mienie, mo”.

Also I will take this opportunity to declare that I shall never surrender niggardly as a word. It is an excellent word that has nothing to do with the slur…

Niggardly* (noun: niggard ) is an adjective meaning “stingy” or “miserly”. It is derived from the Middle Englishword nigard , which is probably derived from Old Norse hnǫggr (“stingy”).[2]

I learned eenie meenie with “Tiger.” Apalled when I learned the other version, and try not to use the reference at all any more. (Also, of course, “eenie meenie” is a pretty poor randomizer. Much better to use a stopwatch with 1/100 seconds accuracy. Assign each person a section of the full second, hit the stopwatch, wait a bit, hit it again.)

It’s a great word.

I learned what it meant. Since I didn’t agree with that, I never used it.

I previously did maintain the use/mention distinction. But I no longer do for this word, because of passionate people talking about those who would abuse this privilege.

As for n-word: I’ve known it by that appellation all my life. It’s in line with any other curse word: fuck is the f-word, shit is the s-word, cunt is the c-word, etc. I use that terminology to discuss such words anywhere I can’t say the word, unless it would be ambiguous.

As for niggardly: I see it as a word that has no need to exist, since more common synonyms work and will be understood better anyways, without the risk of someone mishearing you or thinking you’re just using it as an excuse to slip in the n-word.

So I don’t get why anyone would need to try and save it. It seems to me that it had basically died out.

I’m 61, grew up in the south during childhood.

I’ve never used it to refer directly to black people, on-purpose disparagingly or with the erroneous belief that I was doing so non-disparagingly.

I have ever used it, at an earlier and denser and more clueless phase of my life:

a) A cobbled together solution using parts immediately on hand instead of the correct ones was colloquially referred to as n*****r-rigging something among the auto mechanics, and I absorbed that and used that term. This was long before the phrase “politically correct” was floating around but I had the same chip-on-shoulder attitude that it was magically OK to use the word as long as I didn’t mean black people when I said it, the same casual dismissal of upset folks as being rigid rule following language martinets.

b) A couple of times in my teens I also used the word the way a lot of wannabe social revolutionaries did in the 60s and 70s, to mean “oppressed person”, in the same style as this book title and this song title, before it was drilled through my dense head that it’s offensive to use the black experience as a magic template every time you want to reference that some other group is oppressed.

Are you kidding me? I grew up in West Texas, where I had no idea it was even a bad word until I was almost an adult. I certainly don’t use it anymore but almost certainly would be still had I not escaped to more civilized territory.

I’ve used it in an official capacity. Sometimes I had to write reports or read testimony where it was used.

I said never, but I wonder if I wouldn’t have used it in exactly that same situation… That was certainly a popular construction of “eenie, meenie” in my area. In my head, I remember always using “tiger” though, but who knows how much I’ve whitewashes my memory.

When I was a child, I didn’t even know that “eenie, meenie” ever had any word other than “tiger”. I did, however, know that when my mother was a child, she and her generation casually referred to Brazil nuts as “nigger toes”. Thankfully, by the time she was a parent, she realized how inappropriate that was, and told me never to call them that.

I’ve never understood the white people who go on about “Black people use that word; why can’t we?”. OK, so we can’t use it: So what? Why does it matter? I’ve never found myself in need of the word.

Never used it other than quoting.

I have no need to ever use the word “niggardly” despite having grown up with it. It will not hurt my freedums to give it up. I don’t refer to fagots of wood anymore, either. To me, they’re in the same category.

Never mind

I used it casually, though not frequently, as a child, in the 1970s. Where I lived, growing up, there were very few blacks, and I don’t think that I personally knew a black person, even casually, until I was in high school.

My use of the word as a kid was limited to hearing and repeating tasteless, bigoted jokes. (Also, my grandmother referred to Brazil nuts as “[n-word] toes,” which even as a kid, felt kind of icky to me.) My recollection is that, certainly by the time I was a teenager, I’d come to the realization that the word was offensive, and the low amount of use it had in my lexicon went to zero not too long after that.

I have to admit, I’ve used it several times in the re-telling of the awesomely funny bit in Kentucky Fried Movie.

(Could that skit even be made these days? What a blow to comedy if it couldn’t)

Comedy Central aired an episode of South Park in 2007, called “With Apologies to Jesse Jackson” which used the N-word at least 40 times. It attracted very little controversy and continues to be shown in reruns.

The poll doesn’t really have an available option - similar to kenobi_65 and others, for those of us over a certain age, it was not a “taboo” word. Like some other words we eschew currently, it was not used frequently, or in polite company, but it was used. And, over time, we have learned to not use it at all (some of us, at least :roll_eyes:).

I don’t know when exactly, but I’d say it was a good bit longer ago than that.

We said ‘catch a tiger by the toe’.

Which, come to think of it, would be highly dangerous behavior. Maybe that was the point being made by whoever came up with that version. – I never heard the other version until I was an adult, and then I’m pretty sure what I heard was somebody objecting to it.

I think that sort of usage was excluded in the poll.

It’s possible I read some parts of Huckleberry Finn aloud in my childhood, for instance. I don’t specifically remember doing that, but it might have happened.

I think that depended on where you were. I’m 69, and it’s been a “taboo” word all of my life.

Well, “taboo” like any curse word, but in common use among the lower classes.