Dr. Laura, Mel Gibson, Race and the N-Word

Actor Mel Gibson (left) stands with Interstate Chairman Norm Miller in a 2007 photo-op./PRnewsFoto

By Dennis J. Freeman

We knew it would come sooner or later. Black folks knew it had been hiding. It had been lurking somewhere, just waiting to expose itself. Well, the recent avalanche of the N-word used by high-profile white celebrities have outed the myth of a post-racial lovefest that was supposed to happen now that we have a black President.

Well, black people weren’t going around celebrating that idiotic notion. And now that short-lived lovefest have turned back into something reminiscent routinely exhibited during the Jim Crow era: blatant hate. You might say the “love is everywhere” moment left the building the day after President Barack Obama was sworn into office as the country’s 44th president.  

That moment has now reached to a crescendo level of open bigotry and racist rants spewed by white celebrities such as actor Mel Gibson, Dr. Laura Schlessinger and John Mayer. Basically, it’s become open season to revert back to the good old days of slinging around a word that have had no significance in this society other than to hurt, demean, degrade, inflict pain and wound souls by the viciousness of its nature.  

I don’t care if you’re a 22-year-old rapper or a 72-year-old corporate icon using it, the word “nigger” has historically been associated with slavery, Jim Crow racism, mob lynchings of the Ku Klux Klan and other white supremacist groups, segregation and other forms of inequality against blacks in this country. As we know in this country, when all else fails, white folks calling a black person the N-word is the ultimate insult that allows them to feel superior to their fellow American.

The N-word when spewed with venomous hate is as dangerous as an unplugged grenade. It is a word that was used routinely by whites to make black people feel like they were second-tier citizens in this country. Now, for all the strides that blacks have made to overcome voting rights injustices, jumping over the barrel of segregation and fighting against education and employment discrimination, we’re right back to riding the back of the bus when it comes to being seen as human beings.

The rampant usage of the vile-N-word has made a comeback after a short hiatus. So has the legacy of bigotry behind it. Political correctness has covered up the true feelings of a sector of America and how they view black people, particularly in the Hollywood celebrity spectrum.  My late father used to say- sooner or later the truth will come out. And that truth today reveals that a sector of white America still view us black folks as nothing more than dumb black animals. 

If they didn’t, then the usage of the N-word wouldn’t be thrown around like a baseball. Gibson basically came out and said that all black men were rapists in a tantrum he had with his former love interest in a phone conversation when he allegedly told her, “If you get raped by a pack of niggers, it will be your fault.”

Perhaps Gibson needs a short-course American history lesson about how white slave owners routinely raped black women whenever they felt their lustful thirst for “jungle love” coming on.    

Dr. Schlessinger’s inept excuse for using the N-word because black comedians use it is nothing more than a mockery to what black people have had to endure behind the use of the word. Give me a freaking break. All that episode did was reveal Schlessinger’s true colors about race and what she really thinks of black people. 

Then there is the matter of musician John Mayers and his twisted Playboy interview earlier this year in which he stated in an unusual contextual way, “Someone asked me the other day, ‘What does it feel like now to have a hood pass?’ And by the way, it’s sort of a contradiction in terms, because if you really had a hood pass, you could call it a nigger pass.”  

In the same interview in which he was asked about dating black women, Mayer had this response: “I don’t think I open myself to it. My dick is sort of like a white supremacist. I’ve got a Benetton heart and a f–kin’ David Duke cock.”

Bigot mongrels like Gibson, Schlessinger and Mayer seem to come out of the closet every other day. And what this does is remind us yet again of America’s ugly racial history.

Dennis J. Freeman
About Dennis J. Freeman 1093 Articles
Dennis covers the NFL (San Diego Chargers), NBA (Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers), Major League Baseball (Los Angeles Dodgers) and NCAA sports (USC, UCLA, Long Beach State). As a professional journalist, Dennis has also covered and written on topics such as civil rights, politics and social justice. Dennis is a graduate of Howard University.