Don Lemon (CNN screenshot)
Don Lemon (CNN screenshot)

Arguing that the last thing African Americans need is for one of their own to speak down to them, Ebony's Michael Arceneaux checks CNN's Don Lemon for urging blacks to stop using the n-word, describing it as a cultural term of affection.

… Also, for the millionth time, even if you don’t agree with the use of the word as a “term of endearment,” if you’ve passed high school English you should be able to understand that the context in usage varies. Again, you don’t have to like it, but acknowledging its difference is fine.

That leads me to you, Don Lemon and this despicable editorial of yours in which you so audaciously opine: "Have you ever considered that you may be perpetuating the stereotype that massa intended? Acting like a n*gger. Stop acting like n*ggers and saying 'n*gga,' n*gga."

Well, “respectable Black,” massa didn’t even want me to read so you might as well stone me to death for being able to differentiate context and shifts in language, huh?

I hope and pray I never catch Bill Cosby disease, because that brand of self-loathing and uppity point of view makes me want to bury my head in shea butter. If you’re really about going against the wishes of “massa,” why not do your part to discuss institutional racism? Wouldn’t that be far more of a worthy discussion on a huge outlet like CNN versus this trite debate?


Read Michael Arceneaux's entire piece at Ebony.

The Root aims to foster and advance conversations about issues relevant to the black Diaspora by presenting a variety of opinions from all perspectives, whether or not those opinions are shared by our editorial staff.


Michael Arceneaux hails from Houston, lives in Harlem and praises Beyoncé’s name wherever he goes. Follow him on Twitter.

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