Eliminating the N-Word

I was quite happy to have a previous thread here “hijacked” (his word, not mine) by Rob Harvie, a frequent commenter from the right-wing, conservative/libertarian side of the aisle, to promote the following video featuring the oration of a young man named Johnathon McCoy who is striving to eliminate the N-word from our social and political discourse. It’s incredibly moving and powerful speech. I’ll freely admit that it brought me to tears. Oh, and he’s just 10 yrs. old, which makes it all the more compelling.

You can find out more about this incredible young man via the Huffington Post that has links and such to his petition movement, etc.

I’m kind of speechless after watching it other than to say that it was very inspirational. Some cynical people dismiss hope and optimism, aspiration for a better world and so on as nothing but facile, naïve or foolish ideas, but it’s moments like this, listening to that moving bit of oration that perhaps remind us that we can aim higher and really do better in our own small ways and means; acting in a manner as great as our thoughts and so on (I believe something to that effect was posted on the local church signboard this morning).

And no, that’s not just me dovetailing with the current Liberal messaging strategy, by the way — to just preemptively kill that notion from the outset — although, I have to say, that maybe it’s not such an insipidly lame catchphrase as I had initially thought.

8 Comments

Filed under Linguistics

8 responses to “Eliminating the N-Word

  1. Omar

    Except for all the Jesus and god praising, very inspiring.

    It is implausible that 400 years after the subjugation of a people based in large part on the wretched dogma of Christianity that African-Americans still embrace a religion that holds very little worth in their lives or their future.

    Perhaps someday young Jonathon will have a dream of his own and lead his people to a place that not only frees the body, but the mind and soul as well.

  2. I just automatically filter out all the God stuff or mentally re-purpose it into some Deistic iteration of a higher power not fully understood… (Not that I necessarily agree with that interpretation either, but it’s certainly more palatable to my skeptical sensibilities.)

    It would be unfortunate however to allow my atheism and rejection of traditional Christian dogma to get in the way of something easily recognizable as being fundamentally worthy and morally true simply for the sake of disliking the religious context in which it happened to be fostered.

  3. Omar

    Kee-rist. It wasn’t THAT flipping inspirational. There are many in the NS black community that roll their eyes at that sort of over-the-top, Sermon from the Mount, claptrap. It’s All-American in its bombast. Red, white, black and blue if you will.

  4. I’ve listened to this speech again and am much more dubious about its content on second listening, but it would hardly seem fair to take issue with a 10 yr. old. I wonder though who actually wrote it.

    I should maybe have been more cynical about this from the outset rather than just taking it at face value. Even so, it’s still a powerful speech coming from such a young fellow.

  5. Tomm

    Great stuff, thanks for posting.

  6. hitfan

    A powerful and succinct message from a young man, and you lefties still (predictably) have to bash religion like a Pavlovian attack dog. Dismiss the religious impulse, and you reject thousands of years of human history.

    “”It is implausible that 400 years after the subjugation of a people based in large part on the wretched dogma of Christianity that African-Americans still embrace a religion that holds very little worth in their lives or their future.”

    Ever notice that it’s religious people who procreate the most? Whether it’s Catholic hispanics, Black baptists or Muslim immigrants, the brown people who are denigrated the most (especially the latter) and who actually _believe_ in the authority of a higher power, are going to replace the cynical whites who reject such notions?

    Why does nature (as in Darwinian evolution) favor those who believe in God ? Ironically, God believers are more likely to disbelieve evolution, but evolution certainly believes in them. It is a cosmic joke, really.

    And God laughs.

  7. I would have to disagree that Christianity did little for black people. African people came from different and often warring tribes in Africa and were brought together and supported by the black church. The Black Gospel musical tradition formed one of the basis for rock music. Martin Luther King was propelled by the Social Gospel/Liberation theological tradition in the black church.

    Christianity was a double edged sword. White people used it to justify slavery and colonialism. Black people used it as a source of asserting identity and fighting for liberation in the face of it.

  8. “Dismiss the religious impulse, and you reject thousands of years of human history.”

    even those which have been unceremoniously imposed?

    KEvron

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