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Letter to the editor: Who makes the call?

Tuesday, August 13, 2013 - 12:01 am

When last I looked, the right of free speech was exactly that, the right to free speech. It guarantees you the right to say it but does not force me to have to listen to or agree with it.

We have a new coded language couched in an alphabet soup of words. The most sinister being the infamous “n” word. Recently in a locker room the word was uttered and life as we know it, of course, ended. A Berkley college professor was asked his opinion of the life-altering event and was quoted as saying the members of the offended race would have to assess the extent of their moral outrage.

In the Zimmerman case a lady of color was asked about the “n” word, and we learned that if black you could use it ending in “er” for fellow members of the race and end it in “a” for polite conversation.

Here is the dilemma: Who gets to make the call? The offended race gets to use it as a bonding agent and at the same time will crucify any other race for using it. People have lost jobs for this word. If only one race can use this word, then that is not free speech and is not covered by the First Amendmaent or any other law. It is either such an offensive word that the world should ban its use and strike it from dictionaries. Or acknowledge it for the political self-serving red herring it is.

David Johnson