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Piers Morgan reflects ‘white privilege’ in ‘N-word’

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Piers Morgan, a journalist for Daily Mail, just published an article titled, “If black Americans want the N-word to die, they will have to kill it themselves.”

Now, let us step back and evaluate his “about the author” page; Morgan is a caucasian male in the United Kingdom, where in every aspect, he does not face any sort of discrimination; he is the majority.

In the article, he argues that as such an offensive word, black Americans should kill it themselves. Although, through my personal observation of modern pop culture, young blacks are using it iconically in rap songs, and have been for years.

As much as I refuse to use the word and dislike its meaning, as I believe it to be belittling of a race, it is none of my business to use it or say anything of the word, or how to kill it.

For any high-profile white person to utilize it without abbreviating it as, “the N-word,” would be complete professional suicide, as Morgan accurately states in his argument.

(Cartoon by Catalina Rufin)

However, I found myself agreeing with Arielle Newton of the Huffington Post, who responded by writing, “I held my breath the entire time I read this misguided piece. As a dark-skinned black feminist and avid hip-hop fan, I saw all the markings of a privileged white male telling me and my community how to behave ourselves.”

Newton makes a great point that Morgan has always had the privilege of not facing any sort of discrimination, since he is not a minority.

“Herein lies the difficulty in cultivating cross-racial dialogue, especially with white self-styled allies,” she continued. “Oftentimes, white self-proclaimed allies leave their mark within the black struggle by way of paternalistic edicts on ‘appropriate’ forms of conduct. They tell us what is and isn’t ‘acceptable,’ with no room for debate and no space for us to voice our discomfort with their commandments.”

After publishing the piece, Morgan chastised one of the leading voices in the black community on Twitter for all of social media to see. In a tweet, Morgan posed the question, “Is it what I wrote that offended, or the skin colour of the man who wrote it?”

Luminary Ta-Nehisi Coates, a leading voice in the black community responded within an hour, “In brief — you’re not qualified.”

“Don’t be so patronising,” Morgan responded.

“You said something ignorant. Was called on it, and accused your critics of saying it because you were white,” Coates said.

Morgan felt that he had some sense of entitlement, and he believed he could tell a community how to behave, how to live their lives from the top of his white-privileged throne of a lifestyle. Here, he completely proved that white privilege still exists, especially within the racial-justice sphere.

Instead of performing a labor-intensive analysis that such a topic requires, Morgan went ahead and did what so many do, blaming hip hop for the continuous use of the N-word. It always seems to be that “convenient evil,” as Newton explains, for the corruption of innocent black children.

Newton said, “Where Piers Morgan fails in his relatively vapid piece is that he is not talking to his community; he is talking at mine. He is telling me and my people what we need to do to end our own oppression, without any selfless exploration of what it means to carry the weight of black skin. I do not use the ‘N’ word, which is a choice I have made for myself, not because some rich white man who has never experienced (and will never experience) the burden of blackness told me to.”

And I completely agree with her.

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About the Writer
Alexa Gagosz, Previous Editor-in-Chief

Current Editor-in-Chief of The Suffolk Journal, fighter for equality and former World News Editor. Most likely found in The Journal's office, getting lost...

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Piers Morgan reflects ‘white privilege’ in ‘N-word’