White People, Do Not Use the N-Word

Gwyneth Paltrow is in the news right now for sending a tweet out with the N-word. I’m so sorry. This is either a stupid attempt to get attention not centered around diet, exercise or the right amount of blond hair dye to use, or, wait, yeah, stupid pretty much covers it.

Gwennie – to her friends – defended herself by pointing out that the tweet referred to a real song title by her friend Jay-Z, who she was photographed hobnobbing with at the time. This seems plausible,  except for the fact that white people aren’t supposed to use that word.

Sorry, guys. You’re not allowed. End of story. For those who still don’t get it, allow me to clarify. When it comes out of your mouth, it’s an insult. When it comes out of our mouth, don’t worry about it. Black folks have claimed that word. It’s unofficially ours, rescued from a history of degradation and horror. We now use it at will for good and ill.

I’m joking, but I’m serious too. I don’t think the historical context behind that extremely high-voltage word will fade any time soon, and it’s best for other races to avoid it because controversy around it is so boring.

It’s like the word “fag.” Unless you’re in England requesting a cigarette or trying to make a point in a diversity blog, just don’t use it.

There are many words and phrases that generate heat when used. If you know that, and you use the words anyway, you’d better be, A, trying to make a point in a diversity blog, B, the right color or persuasion to use the word, in private, or C, prepared to take a lot of s*$!.

You can probably guess what that last word is, but like the n word, it’s just not appropriate for polite company. If I was Jay-Z or wife Beyonce, who was also in the photo that accompanied the infamous tweet, I’d have to rethink the relationship with La Goop Gwennie. One likely shouldn’t have too many dull-witted “friends,” after all.