Tag Archives: n-word

No ‘guarantee’? So, what is the problem?

I feel the need to give White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders the benefit of the doubt on her latest skirmish with the press corps/”enemy of the people.”

She was pressed this week about whether she could “guarantee” that there would be no tape recordings of Donald J. Trump using the n-word in conversation.

Sanders said she couldn’t “guarantee” such a thing. Some in the media have gone a bit catatonic in their response to what I thought was a realistic answer. They have wondered how or why she couldn’t — or wouldn’t — offer a direct answer to a direct question.

Consider a couple of factors here.

First, as press secretary, Sanders very well might not know every tiny detail of every little occurrence within the West Wing.

Second, she serves in a presidential administration led by a pathological liar. Donald Trump cannot tell the truth to anyone, or so it appears, at least to chumps like me. I am quite certain Sanders didn’t intend to question the president’s veracity by making her “no guarantee” declaration.

Sure, Trump denies ever using the n-word. He says it’s not in his vocabulary. Do you believe him? I … do … not!

However, her answer sounded to my ears to be about the most honest response she has offered while speaking for the president.

How can POTUS call anyone a liar? Really, how?

Donald J. “Liar in Chief” Trump is tossing the epithet of “liar” around a bit too loosely … if you ask me for my humble opinion.

His latest target is Omarosa Manigault Newman, the former White House special assistant who is alleging the president has used the n-word while discussing certain individuals.

You see, my issue here is that Trump has utterly zero moral standing to call anyone a liar. The man is the country’s pre-eminent lying politician. He cannot tell the truth. It’s impossible.

Any situation — big or small — is open to prevarication from the president.

So now he says Newman’s assertion that the future president’s use of the n-word while working on “Celebrity Apprentice” is false. He said the tape recordings that Newman alleges contain his use of the word don’t exist.

How in the name of Honest Abe am I supposed to believe a single utterance that flies out of POTUS’s pie hole?

I don’t want any misunderstanding here. Omarosa is no saint. She’s trying to sell a book. She got herself hired to work in the White House doing a job that no one has yet defined. She didn’t belong there. For all I know she well might have deserved to be fired.

But if you’re going to put her word against the Liar in Chief, well … I’m going with Omarosa.

‘N-word’ burns my ears, even when POTUS uses it

Barack Obama’s use of the “n-word” the other day in an interview made me cringe.

OK, he’s the president of the United States. He’s partly of African-American descent. The subject of his media interview was racism. So he’s entitled, I guess, to use the word.


But I hate the sound of the word. I hate seeing it written. I hate hearing it spoken. In the words of one of my sons, “It makes my ears bleed.”

The use of the word had become a staple of black comedians’ efforts at some sort of self-deprecation. They have felt it’s OK to use the word, drawing laughs in the belief of audience members that “It’s all right for them to use the word.”

Where I come from, it’s not all right for anyone to use a word intended as a racial slur.

That includes gang members who tag buildings with the word and who use it in casual conversation among themselves.

Rap artists have bastardized the word with crazy spellings meant for mispronunciation. It’s not the actual “n-word,” but you hear it said and you know what it means.

According to The Hill, Obama told an interviewer: “Racism, we are not cured of it. And it’s not just a matter of it not being polite to say n—– in public. That’s not the measure of whether racism still exists or not.”

The comments, of course, have come in the wake of that hideous massacre in Charleston and the intense debate it has launched — yet again — over whether racism still poisons our society.

Of course it does.

I get what the president says about the impolite use of the “n-word” and whether it can bring an end to the racist strains that infect so many of us today. Striking it from our vocabulary, though, is a start.

'Free speech' at OU goes off deep end

The question has arisen: Should those nimrod students caught on video shouting racial epithets be allowed to say those things because it’s “free speech” guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution?

Here’s my answer: No.


The University of Oklahoma has acted on several levels in response to this hideous video in which white students are shouting the n-word and making references to lynching while saying bad things about black students on the campus.

The students have been expelled; the fraternity, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, has been disbanded; University of Oklahoma President David Boren has issued the strongest statement possible in condemning such conduct.

Will it end this kind of despicable behavior on college campuses across the land? Don’t hold  your breath.

This isn’t a free speech issue. Students ought to be held to some standard of conduct. What the nation has seen coming out of that video at OU is a demonstration of crass behavior that stoops to unspeakable levels.

Jim Mitchell’s blog for the Dallas Morning News, which is attached to this post, doesn’t address the free speech issue directly, but he presents an interesting view of what happened that day when the SAE students went berserk.

One of the aspects of modern life, and the OU students should know this, is that nothing — not a single act that anyone commits in public — is immune from technology’s prying eyes. Everyone has a camera these days; it’s contained in that little telephone we’re carrying around with us. You start chanting things you don’t want the world to hear? Be careful, because someone’s going to record it and send it out there.

Free speech? Not even close.

As Mitchell writes in his blog: “These students deserved hefty punishment and they received it, unlike previous generations of Sigma Alpha Epsilon students who apparently learned the same vile song in an age without social media. But these students have absolutely no power to impact lives — yet.”


Top cop calls it quits in N.H. town

Bye, bye, Police Commissioner Robert Copeland.

Your moment of infamy has taken you out of office — as it should.


Copeland is the now-former police commissioner of Wolfeboro, N.H., who had the indecency the other to be heard referring to the president of the United States using the n-word. Copeland at first refused to apologize for the highly disgusting word to describe President Obama.

Then he got a bellyful of complaints from residents of the town he had been elected and re-elected to protect. They didn’t like the extreme disrespect he exhibited toward the president. They told him so in no-uncertain terms.

So, he quit.

Fine. The commissioner disgraced himself and, more importantly, the town he represented.

Why is this important? Well, for my money it’s important because this kind of slur has no place coming from any public official at any level of government. Indeed, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and the 2012 Republican presidential nominee who owns a home in Wolfeboro, said it correctly when he demanded Copeland’s resignation. Romney said Copeland’s “vile epithet used and confirmed by the commissioner has no place in our community.”

It has no place anywhere in a civilized society.

Is the ex-commissioner entitled to speak his mind? Sure he is. But when he disgraces the public office he holds and shames the public trust, then he should be called to account.

That’s what happened in a small New Hampshire town.

No threat to freedom of speech

So … I’m watching a bit of news at work the other day when a colleague walks up and says of Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, “I don’t think he should have to pay a damn thing for what he said. Whatever happened to freedom of speech?”

He wasn’t finished. Then he took off on the controversy over that New Hampshire police chief who called President Obama an “n-word,” and then said he wasn’t going to apologize for saying it. “He’s got a right to say what he wants,” my colleague said.

He said a bunch of other things. I chose not to engage him at that moment, as there were customers present.

I’ll answer him here.

Freedom of speech? He thinks it’s threatened by so-called “political correctness.” That’s what I got from him. If that’s the case, he’s wrong.

Donald Sterling has the right to say the things he did to his, uh, girlfriend. You know, the stuff about his disliking her hanging out with black athletes and bringing them to his basketball games. He can say those things.

The National Basketball Association to which he belongs as a team owner, however, has the right to impose certain codes of conduct upon team owners, players, coaches, ball boys and girls, and cheerleaders. Sterling broke the rules when he spouted off as he did with those reprehensible comments about African-Americans. His comments entered the public domain and the NBA has acted according to its bylaws.

It banned him for life, fined him $2.5 million and is pressuring other team owners to get him relieved of his team.

As for the n-word-spouting police chief, he also has the right to say what he said. He’s also a public official in a community that has the right to demand better of the people it pays with the taxpayer money.

The Constitution’s First Amendment isn’t in jeopardy here. It still stands. The Neanderthal cop and the sad-sack NBA team owner have just been caught saying things decent human beings shouldn’t say about other human beings.

Long live freedom of speech — and long live those who demand better of those who say disgraceful things.

Donald Sterling (cont.)

If the Donald Sterling saga continues — as I’m sure it will for some time — I am hoping it can veer toward the whole issue of race in America and the conduct not only of celebrities, but of all of us.

The National Basketball Association has banned the Los Angeles Clippers owner for life because of his hideous racist rant overheard in a phone conversation with his much younger girlfriend. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver took the bold step today and also fined Sterling $2.5 million. The owner will face immense pressure from other team owners to sell his team, presumably to someone outside his family.

That’s a good first step.

But then I heard a New York Times sports columnist, William Rhoden, take the discussion a bit farther as it relates to African-American athletes..

Rhoden, who also is African-American, called on highly paid professional athletes to begin honoring themselves by stop using the “n-word” in locker rooms. He said it’s common for these athletes to use that despicable word to each other.

Given that I am not black, I suppose I cannot quite understand why intelligent human beings would use such language … even as some kind of inside joke.

Of the many African-American friends I’ve had over many years of living, I’ve never heard any of them refer to each other with that highly pejorative term. Even in the Army back in the late 1960s, when I was bunking with black soldiers, I cannot recall a single time hearing it.

I’ll take Rhoden at his word — as well as others who’ve reported it over a great length of time — that the word can be heard in locker rooms.

Professional athletes of all racial and ethnic backgrounds have been rightly offended by what has transpired in recent days regarding the hateful speech spewed forth from this particular team owner. They’ve protested by tossing warm-up jerseys on the floor, worn black socks while competing, made statements condemning the words that came from Sterling’s mouth and called for a national discussion about race relations.

One prominent black journalist, though, made a brief point in a TV interview today that deserves to be heard over and over.

It is for African-American athletes — the targets of one team owner’s reprehensible tirade — to start speaking with respect to each other. The “n-word” must be silenced.