I am starting to forgive Viola Davis for “The Help.” Lawd, I know it’s hard out there for black actresses (especially darker skinned ones), but it sucked seeing such a classy woman play a maid. Not there is anything wrong with a film looking at the history of black maids, if it’s done with respect. “The Help” was typical white romanticizing of an exploitative/oppressive time. White America loves to see black women play Mammy:
In this clip from Oprah’s upcoming Next Chapter, Ms. Davis (who looks GORGEOUS) speaks about the reality of colorism in Hollyweird.
There are about 40 million black folks in the U.S. Black folks aren’t monolithic (although white America tries their hardest to make us one), so trust me when I tell you that out of that 40 million, there is just a small percentage that say “nigga.” Of course, something like this is hard to quantify. But it’s not far-fetched to believe, that more black folks than not, don’t use the N-word. I mean, there are 40 MILLION OF US!!
Yet, many white folks/non-black folks like to justify them using the word, because some black folks say it. I tend to have mixed feelings about the word. I rarely use it, and feel it’s tacky to do so. However, I do understand that for some black folks, it’s just another form of slang. It’s somewhat similar to how I call black folks negro, sometimes. I don’t mean it in a derogatory way, it’s just a way for me to emphasize my point (“Negro, please”). There are other groups that have flipped language that has been used to dehumanize them, but folks outside of that group, still understand it’s an in-house thing (or don’t assume everyone in that group has embraced the word).
But there seems to be an obsession with white folks/non-black folks that want to say nigga. Because of our country’s racist/white supremacist history, and because some other communities of color have jumped on the anti-blackness bandwagon (hey better them, than us!), many folks think they should be able to treat black folks any old kind of way. Even when there are 39 million of us saying please don’t say nigga, these folks will fixate on that 1 million. It’s because it gives them the excuse to act how they really want to act towards black folks–racist.
The View discussed this issue recently on their show. I agree with Whoopi, when she stated that non-blacks can go ahead and say the word, but to be prepared for the consequences. I strongly recommend that non-black folks don’t us the N-word, but if you insist, that’s on you. There are 39 million black folks that will clock you in the jaw, and keep it moving. I don’t want to hear nobody begging for help or crying when it happens. If you trying to be about that life, you best suck it up.