The common practice of the use of the word “ni****r” between black on black exchanges sends mixed signals: The Mimi Groves quandary
The attorney for a would-be college freshman, who was reportedly forced to withdraw from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, after a former classmate posted a years-old social media clip of her uttering a racial epithet told “The Story” that his client is remorseful for the video and that the college “rushed to judgment.
“Mimi was a kid when she did this,” attorney Shan Wu said of Mimi Groves on “The Story.” “She’s appalled, and having said that, she’s not trying to excuse it in any way — and what she lost was her dream. Like many athletes, she had worked most of her young adult life for this shot at going to a great school and being on their team.”
Groves, of Leesburg, Va., was 15 when she posted a three-second video of her using the slur, which was apparently held for posterity by now-18-year-old Jimmy Galligan, who had indirectly received the video, according to Reason.
We recently questioned whether a student’s acts occurring off of school property should be used in school disciplinary proceedings; we raise the same issues in this case.
The Reason article continues, “This story is a powerful example of several social phenomena: the militant streak in social justice activism, the naivety of today’s teens and their not-actually-disappearing Snapchat messages, social media’s hunger for mob justice, and even the capacity for elaborate cruelty that has always existed among high schoolers. But the wildest thing about this incident is that most people will learn about it by reading The New York Times.”
We agree with the “Reason” article, particularly concerning social media’s hunger for mob justice and mainstream media’s (NYT’S) relentless support of cancel culture and ostracism ideologies.
We have also written about the phenomenon of how white people, especially suburbanites, have glamorized black poverty through the use of music, slang-language, and clothing.
For the most part, we feel this is a good thing except where boundaries are exceeded. For example, it is common practice for blacks to refer to other blacks as” N…er.” –this can send confusing and mixed signals to non-blacks-especially to younger audiences. Frequent usage of the term can easily be interpreted as a hip, instead of discriminatory, use of the word.