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Thursday, August 02, 2007

Freedoms: Speech and Hatred

Face it, we're being enslaved. Slavery is not at all over - not by a longshot - because none of us are truly free. We cannot do the things we were guaranteed the right to do, challenged by oppressive overseers who try to put us back in our "place" every day.

And here in the city of Chicago, two of this era's greater-ranking oppressors are merging and will be sharing the city's overseeing. I'm speaking, of course, about Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson. Now I don't really have as much of a beef with Jackson; he stays out of the newspapers more often than not and is more of a behind-the-scenes kind of guy (as far as I can tell). Or it could just be that he's totally not behind-the-scenes; he's just severely overshadowed by the pompous windbag of oppression known as Al Sharpton.

Use the "n-word" in public (or loudly in the privacy of your own home) and the odds are good that it will travel like a twinge on a spider's web, alerting the beast that it's time to feed and suck the life out of another morsel. Say it on any broadcast waves, and the swarm is akin to a scene in Braveheart. Even now, I can picture Al Sharpton with the half-blue face, shouting:

"They can have cops shoot us! They can lynch us in the streets! They can portray us poorly in the media! But they can NEVER SAY THE N-WORD!!!"

Well guess what, Sharpton? Yes, we can! We have the right to use any word we want, at any time we want, in any place we want!

Oh, I think except for "fire" in a crowded auditorium. I think that's one's actually illegal, because it can get people killed in the ensuing trampling - though saying the WORD isn't illegal, just the result of it is illegal. Or something. It's a slippery slope...

Back to the point: Sharpton and Jackson are both proponents of the "death" of 'the n-word'. They even had a ceremony for its burial and everything. Which was then promptly defiled. It just goes to prove my point: You cannot kill words, and you cannot forbid them to be spoken. If you tried to ban/kill the word "green" - let's say you're against the unholy union of pureblood blues and yellows and you consider it an offense to the color wheel at large - wouldn't you also have to ban the word "verde" ("green" in Spanish)? What about "midori" (Japanese) or "vert" (French) or "зеленый цвет" (Russian)? No matter what words you take away, you can't change the fact that it IS a color and it's the IDEA of that color that creates the words, not the other way around. Removing the "n-word" isn't going to remove the hatred or feelings that lead people to USE that word; you've got the whole thing backwards! Even if you removed the right to say all known forms of the word "green" from every single language, people would have to find new ways to say it or express it. The color remains, and it wouldn't be long before "blellow" (blue-yellow) came into play. Kill it, and you'd get "yellue" (yellow-blue). Kill that, and people might start just calling it a word you couldn't get rid of...

Like "Kermit". Could you really kill off that word, just because it NOW represents some word or idea that you don't like? That's what we're faced with today.

Newer "n-words" are being formed thanks to the destruction and burial of the old one. Now, instead of the "true n-word", some people on the street have switched to "ninja". What are you going to do about that, oppressors Jackson and Sharpton? You can't kill a word that has thousands of years of history completely unrelated to the negative idea you're foolishly trying to hunt down and kill without bothering to try the root of the problem.

And the root of the problem is the hatred. Without the hatred, there'd be no reason to create or use "n-words" of any variety. Words are an expression of feelings and ideas - you can't just treat every instance of a word as just one emotion or feeling or idea being tied to it. One person from the Deep South might use the "n-word" as a way to express outright hatred and loathing for a race of people. One person of that race might use the "n-word" as a way to express a "brotherhood" or connection with other people of that race. Nobody should be allowed to mandate that one usage is associated with all utterances of that word, and no matter if you use it to express brotherhood, comedy, or even the factual (like reading a transcript) - the mandate says it's nothing but hatred and loathing.

That's a load of "BS-word".

No matter what the foolish reason for trying to cut the word down to size, you can't curb the ideas and emotions behind it. Nobody can tell you how to feel or how to think. You have the right to enjoy something or dislike something. That's right, you have the liberty of hatred. You can hold a grudge, form an enemy, even pray for genocide. You can have any idea you choose to be nestled in your head - and even the right to say them out loud and express them. Following through with them, however, is another case entirely. You have the freedom to wish for genocide; you don't have the freedom to put it into action. But that's a rant for another day.

I think I've spoken my peace. Which I am fully entitled to do. I have the freedom of speech. And I have the freedom of hatred towards those who do not respect the freedoms of speech and hatred.

So Mr. Jackson and Mr. Sharpton - keep your wits about you, because I won't be stifled by your oppressive beliefs that words can be "bad". Words are always good, because it's always better to use them than to resort to violence instead. Any good mother can tell you that. The ideas are what you're supposed to be against, not the words expressing them. And unfortunately for you, the ideas in someone else's head are not yours to govern. The best you can hope for is you speak your mind, just as you should let others speak theirs, and hope that in time, your words can sway their minds away from the hatred and loathing that lead them to use their words in ways you don't like.

Until then, we'll just have to agree to disagree - and speak our minds as such.

Which we both have the freedom to do.

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