What It's Really Like to Be Called the N-Word

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[Editor's Note: From the ladies at The View to Slutwalk, there's been a lot of debate lately about who can say the N-word and why. What's troublesome is that some people seem to want to use it mainly for shock value or to assert their own rights of free speech. (I choose not to use it.)

That's why Karnythia's post about being bullied -- by a police officer -- with this racial epithet  as a child is so powerful. This is the power a word can have on a person. --Grace]

I can remember the very first time someone called me a nigger. I was 12 years old and in the 8th grade. I was walking from the gifted program at Kenwood high school in Chicago back to Kozminski, my grammar school. I wasn’t alone, there were 5 of us that walked that way every day. Two boys and three girls. All kind of nerdy, but with delusions of coolness ahead in high school.

 

And every day these two cops stopped us, and made us late getting to our regular school. They always asked the same questions, and we always gave the same answers. This day, for some reason or another they were really dragging out the BS & one of the guys with me made a comment about them making us late every day.

 

Black girl running

 

Image Credit: Quinn Dombrowski, via Flickr

 

Read more from On Being An Actual Nigger Woman at The Angry Black Woman

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