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Incognito’s Use of the “N-Word” to Martin is in No Way Excusable


In the wake of the Jonathan Martin-Richie Incognito bullying scandal, I’ve heard some pretty absurd opinions on the topic. As many know, Incognito has been accused of harassment by Martin, his Miami Dolphins teammate. In a voice-mail obtained by ESPN, Incognito is said to have started off the message by saying, “Hey, wassup, you half n—– piece of s—.” It’s terrible to read, and while no media members have been able to actually listen to the message, some pretty mind-blowing thoughts have been expressed.

A few days ago on ESPN’s SVP & Russillo radio show, former NFL quarterback and current ESPN analyst Danny Kanell actually said that he is waiting to pass judgment on Incognito until he hears the tone of the voice-mail because many elements of the message, specifically the use of the “n-word,” are a part of common locker room vernacular.

Now, I respect Kanell, but that is one of the most ludicrous things that I have ever heard. Does he really believe that Incognito, who is white and has a strong history of trouble, would really jokingly/amiably call Martin, who is black, a “half n—– piece of s—-“? And even if that was the case, does it make it OK? I say no. Our generation has been taught, and rightfully so, that the use of the “n-word” by white people is simply inexcusable. It’s hard for white people to understand that black people can call each other the term, yet white people themselves are forbidden from doing so. It may seem hypocritical, but the fact is that it brings back thoughts of slavery and terrible times of segregation; it’s just an awful term to use as a Caucasian. It even appears apparent that Incognito meant to demean Martin even further by calling him a “half n—–,” as if to put emphasis on the fact that he is of mixed race, or somehow not black enough.

To put it simply, the word is off-limits for white people, and no reason to defend Incognito exists, no matter the tone that he was using.


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