Today's post comes from a one-sided, unapologetically testosterone-driven, politically incorrect, united n-word perspective.
There is a term called "The Bro Code" which is very much a part of the American vernacular. The term crosses all racial, ethnic, and socio-economic borders. It even crosses firmly established gender borders and has been adopted by all genders. The term, as its name suggests, is used as a reminder of an unspoken agreement within the brotherhood of humanity that certain standards of behavior are to be adhered to. There are those that will argue that this code only applies to certain groups of males. Ironically it is almost never a male that would make such an assertation.
Among some conscious users of the n-word, that is people with the n-word in their active vocabularies, a similar code of conduct is almost always at play. It says I will not feast knowing that you are hungry, "they" are trying to starve niggas like us and I can't watch a nigga starve. I should have warned readers that I would be using the form of the n-word, ending with "a", gratuitously in today's post. However, it is not intended to be understood as a physical description. The niggas I'm referring to in this post speak Korean, German, English, French, Spanish, and Italian. In fact, they speak all the languages of the earth and they come in all shades and colors and sizes.
This is an unapologetic "shout out" to all of them.
Contrary to popular belief these niggas are not violent They abhor violence but will use it to defend the defenseless even while being dismissed by the defenseless as niggas. They don't need or ask for your approval. They are conscious of monetary systems and people's belief in them but they do not use the material to measure the true quality or value of human existence. They know that niggas, no matter where they are from, want to love, be loved, and live in peace. They like to look you in the eye when they are speaking to you. They like it when you look them back in their eyes as they are fond of having nothing to hide. In fact, having nothing to hide is at the core of their value system. It only comes second to, not judging niggas.
One might ask, "Leonard how do you propose to know these things?" What makes you an expert they ask.
My answer goes something like this. I was raised by a black woman that didn't have the n-word in her active vocabulary. My grandfather asked me not to use the word at a very early age, no matter the form. In his words "It's a word they use to keep us down". I was using the word in a children's rhyme with my siblings when he overheard us catching them by the toe. So I was ever conscious of the word in all of its forms from that day forth. Though it was never a part of my active vocabulary it was used in some of the circles that I traveled in. I have traveled in many circles. I have traveled in circles where the n-word is not even on their radar but I was aware of its presence in their codes of conduct.
If the n-word had been a part of my active vocabulary, one of my earliest uses of the word to relate a story to friends would have gone like this. (1987 Monsters of Rock Festival Germany)
I went to a show with a couple of niggas from my company. By starting the story that way I would not have to explain to the listener that I trust him/her or the people that I went to the concert with. I would not have to explain that I was not concerned for my safety. I would not have to explain anything that I would indeed have to be explained to a group or individual unfamiliar with the usage of the n-word. I could simply continue with, one of them really likes Meatilica and after seeing them live, I now understand why. Niggas went crazy when they started to play! We started a mosh pit with some other niggas that we met there. We shared our Jack Daniels and some German biker niggas shared their brew (beer). We slept outside in some sleeping bags and had sandwiches and brew for breakfast. If one of my friends with the word in their vocabulary had told the story, that is how he/ she would have told it.
Niggas do not see themselves as a different species, but they are conscious of the fact that some people have no problem viewing themselves as "above the rest". They see that disconnection as the root cause of a lot of unnecessary suffering. The desire to designate one's self along with an entire group is a folly that people with the n-word their vocabulary are not susceptible to. Just ask one and they will tell you; rich, poor, black, white, old, young, all niggas are the same.
A typical response that one might hear from a person with the n-word in their active vocabulary is; "The nigga clearly needed help, so what was I supposed to do"? " I helped the nigga out".
That is usually said in response to one's own inquiry about why said person helped a stranger in need. Then they typically add something like; " I know I would want a nigga to help me out in that situation". Their justification for helping is usually as simple as just seeing the need. I am not talking about pseud-altruistic grand public gestures. On the contrary, I am talking about good deeds that would have gone unnoticed if no one is there to witness them. I am sure that many people have encountered these types of niggas. They look you right in the eyes and add something like "you would have done the same thing right"? It is as if they are oblivious to the soul searching that the rest of us have to do when giving an honest answer to that question as we struggle to convince ourselves, I would have done the same thing. Right!?
That particular kind of male exists in every culture that I have come across. Though the world seems bent on denying their existence, these niggas, (conscious use of the term), are not discouraged. They simply keep on being chivalrous, generous, humble, and thankful. Though they speak a host of languages and have a host of different backgrounds I have had the distinct pleasure of meeting them. They are acutely aware of the fact that most men do allow themselves to be separated into categories that use metrics that do not make sense to measure a man's true value. Metrics such as race, nationality, and level of education which humans ironically use to measure a man's humanity. They are willing to sit at the table with any man with good intentions in his heart. I am aware that most people will see my last statement as naive but niggas will disagree and I can live with that.
At this point in the blog, I think a reminder is in order. I am an English trainer, I teach English as a second language to both young and old professionals alike. However, unlike what is taught in other courses I do not shy away from the controversial. I know that some of you are thinking that the n-word is not controversial and that pleases me immensely, I sincerely hope that you enjoy the read. For those of you that think the n-word is offensive and never appropriate,I hope that you have a deeper understanding of the term the next time that you hear it and will consider the context in which it was used.
The better armed you are with knowledge on things that may seem trivial to you, like the n-word, the more capable you will be to communicate your opinion without causing offense. I would not want a single student in one of my courses that says e.g., "I like hip hop", to not know that the rappers have a different understanding of the words that one thinks that one knows. The rappers' use of certain terms may be at odds with everything you think that you know about that particular term.
I'm going to have to cut it short here and in another post, I will explore the darker, (excuse the pun), side of the word.
Your two cents are always welcome...