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The N Word vs Freedom Of Speech

Updated on December 12, 2014

A War On Words . . .

Is Your Goat Tied Here?

Verbal bullying, name calling, insult hurling, fire-breathing words that were designed to shock and revile are not polite, but are part of life in general. Most kids grow up getting called a whole lot worse than 'n' words.

But if you think the 'n' word is offensive, it is even more so when politics are involved. Whenever the 'n' word (or any other word) is used to encourage heated debate on its use or misuse, the first thing most controlling governments do is find a way to get tax funding to study its eradication to create laws of censorship. 

Censorship And The 'N' Word

Hollywood Doll - Mae West Art
Hollywood Doll - Mae West Art

"I believe in censorship. I made a fortune out of it."  ~ Mae West

Mae West could not have said it better, and no truer words were ever spoken. Lawmakers are currently implementing policies designed to police the offensive words of its taxpaying citizens for courtroom profit on behalf of those who claim to be offended or abused by them. Essentially, our First Amendment rights are being eroded one word at a time.

The Flag Of Freedom
The Flag Of Freedom

History and Meaning of Freedom Of Speech

According to Wikipedia, the origins of freedom of speech and expression began with ancient Athen's' democratic ideology of free speech documented in the late 6th or early 5th century BC. Two of the most cherished values of the Roman Republic were freedom of religion and freedom of speech.

Formal documentation of freedom of speech in the United States dates back to 1698, as it related to French and English occupation of the colonists at the time. After the Revolutionary War, the United States incorporated ones right to freedom of speech in the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. It is also included by many state constitutions, and state and federal laws.

However, the freedom is not absolute; the Supreme Court of the United States has recognized several categories of speech that are excluded from the freedom of speech, and it has recognized that governments may enact reasonable time, place, or manner restrictions on speech. How this freedom of speech is manipulated by the courts and international laws can be found in the detailed timeline here.

The N Word In The Amazon

There is more to the history of The N Word than what is written in a couple of books. Knowledge is a good thing. You are welcome to share yours here.

Banning The N Word

Banning words typically leads to burning books, courtrooms filled with frivolous law suits, and a country filled with people who are afraid to speak their mind.

Should we protect our freedom of speech? Or should the "n" word be banned?

So what do you think?

Protect The N Word

Protect The N Word

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    • anonymous 3 years ago

      Every nationality/ethnic groups have slurs as part of their identities. For Example the WOP, dago, etc. What makes this particular word so different and special. Is the word really offensive or is it because of a handful of racial arsonists that are making the noise.?? The word is undoubtedly offensive, but the speaker runs the risk of physical retaliation if used indiscriminately. That's the price for bad manners.

    • anonymous 5 years ago

      how about chink,spic,wetback, don't they count

    • Spook LM 5 years ago

      Of course you are quite correct. I abhor uncalled for cruelty and will always stand up against it. The trouble is the modern politicians don't understand common sense. I've said it before and I'll say it again, it's just a matter of time before Native American or African American become dirty words.

    • anonymous 6 years ago

      We cannot start banning and prohibiting the words we speak. We still do have freedom of speech. Now when someone is speaking it is difficult to know exactly what they are trying to say because when they say the N-word, the B-word, and so on, it is hard to get the true gist of their conversation. It sounds like kindergarten. STOP this nonsense!

    • anonymous 7 years ago

      Ironically we all know "the N word" means nigger. How do you outlaw a word anyway. What if a group of people decide that they will refer to all niggers as "garfunkles", and that garfunkle now has all the stereotypical meaning behind it. You know the ignorant, lazy, sometimes smelly black guy who can't enunciate his words or speak English with proper diction. Eventually when enough people came to understand that garfunkle meant nigger then they would be ticked off, and so would anyone with the last name Garfunkle. It's a word, it doesn't enslave people. It exposes the ignorance of the people of any color who repeatedly use it.

    • anonymous 7 years ago

      i believe white people just shouldn't say it because of what they put us through

    • anonymous 8 years ago

      if you ban one word (even one), there is no longer freedom, only an illusion.

      anyone in favour of banning speech should move to cuba, china, burma, russia, saudi arabia and see how they like it

    • anonymous 8 years ago

      So im white i don't care about banning it but i want to be able to say any time i want for freedom of speech. Only reason why we can't say nigger is because African Americans blame ALL white people for a crime we didn't commit and the DIDN'T suffer. But no one should be arrested for it.

    • religions7 8 years ago

      While I don't think the N word should be used in polite society - people should not be arrested for using it. So let's not ban the word. People will just invent other words anyhow.

    • RuthCoffee 8 years ago

      I think like any word, we can as people decide to reject a word without formally banning it. We can choose to not use it personally, choose not to listen to people when they use it, choose to not buy music where it is used and so forth. The social power of this can be great. It is the intent behind that word that is evil and that can't be banned very effectively.

    • Tonie Cook 9 years ago from USA

      "I may disagree with what you have to say, but I shall defend, to the death, your right to say it."  -- Francois Marie Arouet VOLTAIRE -- The Friends of Voltaire, 1907 -- French philosopher and writer (1694-1778)

    Ban The N Word

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      • Ella 6 months ago

        This is well written. Thoroughly enjoyed the way you convey it's accurate content. Thanks for being awesome.

      • jrsmith 2 years ago

        the word is in the dictionary and can be used by anyone regardless of race

      • chloecavanaugh 9 years ago

        I wouldn't use the "N" word to describe my beautiful grandson, who is biracial. Nor would I appreciate hearing someone call him that. As far as banning it? Won't happen!

      The Most Important Thing

      It's not just about the 'n' word. Words evoke emotion, instill intelligence, bridge gaps in communication, inspire ideas, and educate. Words can be powerful. Words can heal the heart, or instill a riot. But words are only words until people get involved.

      For just a minute, imagine living in a world where 'words' are selected for elimination.

      Words Of Wisdom

      "Neither a borrower, nor a lender be" ~ William Shakespeare, 1564

      In summary, the purpose of this site is to enlighten and encourage debate, and serve as a gentle reminder that there are more important issues than banning words. You are welcome to say what you want here, and if you have a link that relates to our First Amendment Rights, you are welcome to share it here, too.

      Burying The N Word

      Richard Pryor and The N Word

      What's 'N A Word . . .

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        • profile image

          CRY BABIES 2 years ago

          fuck all those cry babies, a real man can walk off words. its all on sided, they call each other nagger often. but when a honkey, spic, wetback, whop, or jew says nagger were racists. they also discriminate against their own light skinned naggers. same goes for overseas such as iraq, light skin sand naggers and dark skin sand naggers. this will never end its worldwide. worst thing anyone can do is pay attention to names, don't let it stick and we will all be fine. don't blow up a name, its a stupid thing to do. a smart person knows words are words, but if you are truly a nagger you have to accept your inner nagger. anyone can be a nagger

        • Spook LM profile image

          Spook LM 5 years ago

          Excellent lens on a very touchy subject and I'm surprised I never saw it before.

        • religions7 profile image

          religions7 8 years ago

          Great lens - you've been blessed by a squidoo angel :)

        • profile image

          chloecavanaugh 9 years ago

          You have picked a very debatable topic. I give you *****, for the courage to voice your opinion, in a very well done lens.

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