Usage Of The “N-Word”: How Does It Affect Us?


Nicky Maye and Tyler Giacona

The “N-word” is probably one of the most controversial words in the English language dating back to the 18th century. This word had been used as a hateful term until recent times. 

Currently, black culture adopted the word and turned it into an acceptable term among one another. In modern black culture, this word has been used in music and other forms of media. 

Since this word has been brought to a wider spectrum over the years, many people have different opinions. 

Devin Davis and Braylon Gaines, two of Lake Shore High’s senior students, had thoughts on this topic.

“I feel as if they try to put me in a group, like back in the day,” said Davis.

“They try to make me feel down,” said Gaines. 

Not everyone shares the same feelings on the topic. Walter Larkin-Tramble, another black student of Lake Shore High, spoke his mind on this topic. 

“In my opinion, I don’t have a problem with anyone saying it as long as they aren’t saying it in a derogatory way,” Larkin-Tramble said. 

But, one difference that most people can agree on, is that the “N-word” is different depending on whether it ends with an “ah” sound or an “er.” 

“Those are fighting words!” Larkin-Tramble said.

Davis also agreed on this topic, while saying how the “er” version is, “out of pocket,” and, “wild.”

A common theme in regard to the use of the “N-word” is that most black people have been called it in a derogatory way. 

“She was trying to make me feel lesser while using these words and saying it offended her and made her feel uncomfortable,” Gaines stated. 

“It boiled down to him calling me it … and he was acting tough on the internet and things got handled,” said Larkin-Tramble. 

Though these experiences only focus on black people and the “N-word,” this could happen with other people of color. This topic is only the starting point of racial discrimination and should be talked about from a broader standpoint and not be a censored, closed-off topic being retained and belittled by oppressors of our cultures. 

This topic has such a wide spectrum of opinions which should bring notice and concern in our generation and should be pushed out on a bigger stage for more to see and talk about.