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Nigger VS. Nigga: Is There A Real Difference?

Lisa Lampanelli in hot water for using N wordWith Lisa Lampanelli finding herself in hot water for using the world “nigga” in a tweet, the old “nigger” vs “nigga” debate is back in full effect.

The famous comedian tweeted a picture of herself with her new pal Lena Dunham of the HBO show “Girls” having a fun night out together. While there was nothing controversial about the photo, the caption had the Twitterverse outraged.

“Me with my nigga @LenaDunham of @HBOGirls – I love this beyotch!!,” she wrote as the caption for the photo.

Fans may have been outraged, but Lampanelli found nothing wrong with the word even after she received the wave of backlash.

“The N-word ending in ‘er’ is far different context from the word ending in ‘a.’ Ask any person who knows the urban dictionary, it means ‘friend,’” Lisa said as she defended herself.

She went on to point out that even if she had used the “er” ending on the word, she was referring to her friend and it wouldn’t make any sense to be using degrading language against her.

Who should be allowed to say the n wordTo continue her defense against the angry Twitter users she explained that she uses the n-word and many other racial slurs during all her comedy shows, but it shouldn’t be seen as offensive because it’s all in the nature of good fun.

“I have always used in my act every racial slur there is for Asians, blacks, gays, and Hispanics,” she said. “To me, its acceptable if the joke is funny and if it is said in a context of no hate. It’s about taking the hate out of the word.”

One Huffington Post reader made it clear that she didn’t agree as she wrote:

“This woman who has never been in my position DARES to lecture me about the “urban dictionary?” What experience does she bring to the matter of being despised in the land of her birth because of skin color? How many jobs and residences has she been denied because of her race in this “land of the free?” How many times has she been stopped by cops, had her dwelling invaded and searched extralegally by those cops because she could not defend herself from them because of her color?… Boondocks episode the JuxtapositionHer use of this expletive, regardless of the way she ends the word, is an abomination, and I would love to tell her to her face!”

While people haven’t been able to agree on whether or not there is a difference between both words, one thing is very clear – there is a ridiculous double standard that needs to stop now. The word should be off-limits to us all, no matter if we end it in a -er or -a. After all, after years of brutal slavery and vicious discrimination, we try to cope with the years of suffering by calling each other the very same degrading names that plantation owners once called us? It just doesn’t make any sense.

One blogger wrote on their blogspot that the term”nigger” helped African Americans “find laughter and comfort within a word that once subjected them to a lower form of life.”

Jews aren’t walking around calling each other “untermensch” or “Judenschwein” (derogatory terms that the Nazis called Jews during the Holocaust), so why should African Americans walk around calling each other worthless, dirty, slaves – that is, after all, what the word originally meant.

What message does it send if we call each other the same term even if we do pronounce it a little differently? If “nigga” was actually a completely new term that we coined with the definition of endearment, we wouldn’t be so offended when people of other races used it right? But even if a white person came up to you and said “Hello nigga. I hope you’re having a wonderful day today” you would still be offended and shocked by the term right? In other words, it would still hold its usual negative connotation… nothing about that has changed.

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