Greenwoood Mississippi

There is outrage in Greenwood Mississippi; and rightfully so.  It appears that a white council member (Councilman John Lee) referred to one his black colleagues(Councilman David Jordan) as an “ole’ nigger”  (click here read story)

One half of the problem is that some  black people also use this word.  Our musicians and comedians use the word freely.  It is recorded, videotaped and mass produced for everyone to consume.  They claim they use the word as a term of endearment.  What they fail to do is look at the word under its historical context.  The word nigger is a racially offensive word which white people used to denigrate black people.  The word should never be uttered out of the mouth of any black person. 

This does not excuse white people for using this word.  One of the republican council members in Greenwood attempted to defend Lee referring to Jordan as an ‘ole nigger’ because black entertainers use the word; that is BS!  These white men grew up in the south during a time where they knew that the word nigger is racially offensive.  This excuse to blame hip-hop artists and black comedians of why they feel it is ok to use the word nigger is not going to fly.  The know better and they are using it to their advantage.   And to also put things into historical context; Greenwood, Mississippi is minutes from Money, Mississippi.  This was the town where Emmett Till was brutally murdered for allegedly flirting with a white woman.

So what do you think should happen to Lee?  It is very true the Constitution defends free speech, but their is always a price to pay for it.  A person should not be holding a public office who uses this type of language.  What do you think?


One Response

  1. I have some perspective on this. I attended Mississippi Valley State University, which is about 12 miles outside of Greenwood proper (btw never knew I was so close to where the Emmet Till tragedy occured). First of all Lee should resign, but I expect he won’t. It’s not surprising to hear of something like this happening there but it is surprising that it is gaining national attention. Deep down those back country roads that place has not changed one bit. I remember driving down there with my parents as a freshman (I hail from Milwaukee, my mother also attended MVSU) and how when we pulled into a small country gas station off the interstate, my father was denied use of the restroom for the obvious reason. He didn’t really make a big deal of it (having been born and raised in the crooked Sip) but the vibe was ominous. That was one of my first experiences with the rawness of racism. People like Lee will never change. He may be forced to resign, but he can never be forced to change his way of thinking.

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