There’s a “brave and startling truth” we must come to as a in the United States.  It is obvious that we haven’t yet found it, as manifested only in part by the ongoing infighting over the “N” word, most recently brought to the forefront of our minds by the NFL’s contemplation of banning the word and the ensuing commentary.

When we come to it 
We, this people, on this minuscule and kithless globe 
Who reach daily for the bomb, the blade and the dagger 
Yet who petition in the dark for tokens of peace 
We, this people on this mote of matter 
In whose mouths abide cankerous words 
Which challenge our very existence 
Yet out of those same mouths 
Come songs of such exquisite sweetness 
That the heart falters in its labor 
And the body is quieted into awe 

When we come to it 
We must confess that we are the possible 
We are the miraculous, the true wonder of this world 
That is when, and only when 
We come to it. 

The excerpts above from Maya Angelou’s “A Brave and Startling Truth” speak to journey we find ourselves on as a community.  Some of us here at cannot help but wonder if we are missing the mark, if we are blind to the truth when we over emphasize the use of the “N”word.

  Because while we build up well-articulated, deeply researched, boldly passionate arguments to defend our logic and destroy someone else’s logic on the use of “n*gga”, we apply energy to attacking one another while not actually advancing a healthy conversation about race relations or racial inequality.  –Corey “While We Were Debating The Use of the N-Word…Actual Racism Happened

We wonder if focusing on the use of it is a red herring that blocks us from standing together to rise as a people.  It’s not that we have to all agree about the use of the word…it’s that the infighting gets ugly and unnecessarily divisive.

The hope that by separating us out into two groups, American society will then accept one group of versus the other group, is crazy and sycophantic. Furthermore, it is not corroborated by any facts or experiences thus far. The current President of the United States is powerful, well-educated, and wealthy; by all accounts a huge boon to the “brand.” And despite, you know, being the leader of the free world, racist people occasionally like to compare him to a monkey. — N.Young  On the N-Word: A Love Letter to the Talented Tenth

Shame and infighting just aren’t the surest paths to victory.–Zakiya “I Wish You Would

This weekend marks a time when two years ago, Trayvon Martin’s parents were calling for justice to be served for the murder of their son.  Then and now, we are weary of the criminalization of the black body.

Our judicial system is finding murderers justified in killing our young people for playing loud music, asking for help after car wrecks, wearing hoodies, or just being black, which apparently is intimidating within itself. — Enchanta  “Dear “N-Word” Debaters: Get Off Your Soapbox

Please think, discuss and engage on our series by our above authors. Leave comments, hit us via or email, spread the word.  Hopefully, together, we will get to that truth.