Rodney Fenner

A “Real Nigga” by Rodney Fenner

Hello world. Growing up where I did, around the people I was around, I heard this phrase very often. “I’m a real nigga.” What the hell IS that? Everybody would say it and it was supposed to be a statement of integrity. A statement that meant you were a stand up guy, so to speak. I’ve used it uncountable times myself, but now I laugh at how assertively it was said by myself and others. At this stage in my life though, with the maturity and perspective I have, I look back and can only think, “What the fuck was I thinking?”. Answer? I wasn’t. Therefore, let’s do a little thinking, shall we?
First, what really, is “real”? Where I’m from, it means to strictly adhere to an unwritten but implied “street code”. No snitching, bros before hoes, mind your business, etc. Nobody ever really sits you down and teaches you the rules or anything, you just kinda learn as you go from gangster movies and the people around you who are imitating a way of life they know nothing about. They have no clue about why it was started or why it was perpetuated. Anyway, how does following these rules mean you’re “real” or that you kept it “real”? What if abiding by those rules makes you stray from the natural elements of who you are? Can you still, by definition, be considered “real”? The reality is that there’s no rule book on being “real”. Being real is just being who you are. I’ve said this before and it applies here too. Be 100% of yourself 100% of the time. That’s real. There’s nothing more real than always being yourself no matter what. If you’re an artist, be an artist. If you’re an intellectual, be intellectual. If you’re an athlete, be an athlete. Know your self to be yourself. Allow yourself to be consumed with being yourself. That’s real. What’s more real than being everything you know you are? Even with a person who’s a liar. If everybody knows you’re a liar, and then they say you aren’t keeping it real because you’re lying, that’s a fallacy. If I’m truly a liar, why am I not keeping it real by lying? (People may disagree or debate about that last statement, but that’s just how I see it. Real is truth and the truth about a liar is they lie.)
Next, let’s go to the word nigga. For the record, I hate this word no matter who’s using it and have stopped using it altogether. I admit though, in moments of elevated anger, I slip because it’s a word I’ve used all my life, but I abhor the word. I’ve even stopped acknowledging people when they address me with it. We all know where it came from and what it was meant for and now people make excuses for why they still use it. The most popular one is that its a term of endearment and that because it doesn’t have the er on the end that it doesn’t mean the same thing. Newsflash: that’s supreme bullshit. Here’s the real science. White people called us niggers as a derisive, degrading and ignominious slur. We were called that so much that we began to use it ourselves because we began to believe that’s what we were. Then it was passed down through generations as a regular word because again, we believed that’s what we were. The only reason it’s said and spelled with an a instead of er is because most of us were illiterate and didn’t speak properly. If you say something wrong, you’ll very likely spell it wrong and that’s the way it was passed down. Wrong pronunciation and spelling. That, however, doesn’t negate the true meaning of the word that we perpetuate every day. For instance, if nigga and nigger are different, why does it still sting when a white person says it either way? I mean, it’s a term of endearment, right? Why is my term of endearment your condescending racism? That’s definitely a double standard. It’s a term of endearment when I say it, but a slur when you say it even if you say it the exact same way I did. Really though? To be “real”, the word should be eradicated altogether.
So again I ask, what the hell IS a “real nigga”? By the way, I am really asking this question and I encourage anyone who can form a reply that doesn’t sound completely nonsensical when you say it to yourself out loud. Remember, we’re actually thinking right now. Peace.

Rodney Fenner
DOC #1436377

Advertisements

Categories: Rodney Fenner

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s