[Ads-l] n-word update

David Barnhart dbarnhart at HIGHLANDS.COM
Tue Jun 23 15:43:17 UTC 2015


True, President Obama is black.  But isn't he also white?

Sent from my iPhone

> On Jun 23, 2015, at 10:56 AM, Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU> wrote:
> 
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: n-word update
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> 
>>> On Jun 23, 2015, at 10:42 AM, Jonathan Lighter =
>> <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
>> =20
>> The talking heads are still discussing it.
>> =20
>> The assertion may be gaining ground that it's OK for Obama to "use" =
> the
>> word because he's black, but no white person should ever be =
> "permitted" to
>> utter it - presumably even in reporting on what the President of the =
> United
>> States actually said.
>> =20
>> One white anchor called it "a word most of us haven't used in over a
>> decade."
>> =20
>> Presumably "use" means "mention" here as well.
> 
> I noted that on the first page of today's Times, Obama is said to have =
> "invoked" the word in question.   I think Quine would have accepted that =
> as a near-synonym for "mentioned" rather than "used". But I concede the =
> distinction isn't usually made.  I'd have expected the talking heads to =
> have enlisted the services of Randall Kennedy, author of the mostly =
> well-received _Nigger: The Strange Career of a Troublesome Word_ =
> (Pantheon, 2002),  hasn't been interviewed--unless he has been.=20
> 
> LH
>> =20
>> Meanwhile, certain members of a rival political party are accusing =
> Obama of
>> borderline hypocrisy for "using" the word even as he supposedly =
> condemns
>> racism.
>> =20
>> Another topic of growing controversy is whether the flags of seven =
> Southern
>> states should be replaced because of some historical connection or =
> visual
>> resemblance to one or another Confederate flag. (The Mississippi flag
>> actually includes the rebel flag in its canton.)
>> =20
>> JL
>> =20
>>> On Tue, Jun 23, 2015 at 1:30 AM, Wilson Gray <hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> =20
>>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>>> -----------------------
>>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>>> Poster:       Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM>
>>> Subject:      Re: n-word update
>>> =20
>>> =
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------=
> -----
>>> =20
>>> "That old black magic / Has them in its spell," I reckon.
>>> =20
>>> =20
>>> =20
>>> On Mon, Jun 22, 2015 at 5:12 PM, Jonathan Lighter =
> <wuxxmupp2000 at gmail.com>
>>> wrote:
>>> =20
>>>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>>>> -----------------------
>>>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>>>> Poster:       Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM>
>>>> Subject:      Re: n-word update
>>>> =20
>>>> =20
>>> =
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------=
> -----
>>>> =20
>>>> NPR found it necessary to "warn" listeners that they would actually =
> hear
>>>> the word spoken by the President.
>>>> =20
>>>> In an unrelated development, CNN reports that at least three =
> prominent
>>>> newscasters (Megyn Kelly of Fox and Jake Tappert and Anderson Cooper =
> of
>>>> CNN) have announced their resolve no longer to utter the name (or =
> even
>>> the
>>>> initials) of D----- R---.
>>>> =20
>>>> I seem to recall an interviewee after the Newtown massacre telling a
>>>> journalist she would not utter the name of killer-suicide Adam Lanza
>>>> because "It gives him power."
>>>> =20
>>>> JL
>>>> =20
>>>> On Mon, Jun 22, 2015 at 3:56 PM, Jonathan Lighter <
>>> wuxxmupp2000 at gmail.com>
>>>> wrote:
>>>> =20
>>>>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>>>>> -----------------------
>>>>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>>>>> Poster:       Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM>
>>>>> Subject:      n-word update
>>>>> =20
>>>>> =20
>>>> =20
>>> =
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------=
> -----
>>>>> =20
>>>>> Even the BBC World News crawl carried the headline, "Obama Uses
>>> N-Word."
>>>>> =20
>>>>> CNN has already devoted many minutes to a discussion of the =
> President's
>>>>> utterance. At one point the question was raised of whether it's
>>>> appropriate
>>>>> for white journalists to report it.
>>>>> =20
>>>>> The journalists' answer was yes, but that doesn't make the question =
> any
>>>>> less dumb
>>>>> =20
>>>>> And just now, Professor Cornel West has heatedly declared Mr. Obama
>>> "the
>>>>> first niggerized President."
>>>>> =20
>>>>> A black person is "niggerized," he explained (again heatedly), if
>>> they're
>>>>> too afraid to speak the truth about racism.
>>>>> =20
>>>>> JL
>>>>> =20
>>>>> --
>>>>> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the
>>>> truth."
>>>>> =20
>>>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>>>>> The American Dialect Society - =
> https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=3Dhttp-3A__www.americandialect.=
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> i5tf45f3NFz0HTWM78Gj4OtbJLF2HwiwgeTMM&e=3D=20
>>>>> =20
>>>> =20
>>>> =20
>>>> =20
>>>> --
>>>> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the
>>> truth."
>>>> =20
>>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>>>> The American Dialect Society - =
> https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=3Dhttp-3A__www.americandialect.=
> org&d=3DAwIBaQ&c=3D-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=3DwFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsS=
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> i5tf45f3NFz0HTWM78Gj4OtbJLF2HwiwgeTMM&e=3D=20
>>>> =20
>>> =20
>>> =20
>>> =20
>>> --
>>> -Wilson
>>> -----
>>> All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint =
> to
>>> come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
>>> -Mark Twain
>>> =20
>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>>> The American Dialect Society - =
> https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=3Dhttp-3A__www.americandialect.=
> org&d=3DAwIBaQ&c=3D-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=3DwFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsS=
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>>> =20
>> =20
>> =20
>> =20
>> --=20
>> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the =
> truth."
>> =20
>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>> The American Dialect Society - =
> https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=3Dhttp-3A__www.americandialect.=
> org&d=3DAwIBaQ&c=3D-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=3DwFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsS=
> xPIWYiZRsMFFaLQ&m=3DW1abXozX0ONeIpXwTsww9ve2OYBA5Z2zZi1kszctSTM&s=3DBfrtL3=
> i5tf45f3NFz0HTWM78Gj4OtbJLF2HwiwgeTMM&e=3D=20
> 
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