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Old 15 February 2018, 04:02 PM
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ChasFink ChasFink is offline
Join Date: 09 December 2015
Location: Mineola, NY
Posts: 965

Originally Posted by erwins View Post
That some used the word without knowing or consciously intending it to be racist does not mean that their use of that word was not oppressive. The fact that the word could even have been viewed as just a neutral word is indicative of the enormous endemic and systemic racism in which the person so-viewing it learned the language.
Or, we accept that language is fluid, that meanings change as usage changes and any word's meaning, vulgarity, appropriateness, etc. is determined by those who use it. Let us not forget that the word in question in all likelihood did not start out as a term of derision, but was a variant pronunciation of a word meaning "black". (I sincerely doubt the first person to utter it said "we'll call them X if we're being sympathetic, but call them Y when we're denigrating and dehumanizing them.") It was the attitudes of the people who later used it that made it into an oppressive term, not the other way around.
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