I have two favorite words. The first being topisomerase which is a fancy name for an enzyme that unwinds the bindings of DNA so it can be used in replication. The other being nigga.
Once upon a time nigger was a word that was whipped into our skin, being used to bind the hearts and hands of slaves as the noose of life was tightened around the neck. But now, we have taken out the suffering and found safety in these same syllables.
You know why I say nigga? Because only a nigga should be able to say it. What right do they have to wear the brand they burned into our backs when they were the ones holding the prod? White people, why do you want to say it so bad?
It’s not an attractive word, beginning with a hard n and producing a guh similar to the last gurgling sounds that escaped our ancestors lips before death.
To say nigga you must be equipped with certain things.
You must have nappy hair that looks like a freshly formed birds nest in the morning
You must have skin the color of mud as we are the true foundation your society was built on
You must have a natural fear to the color blue. It must unlock a primal instinct in you to run, because nowadays there is no safety in standing still, raising hands, begging on knees or even breathing.
There’s more to this word than vocal cords and opportune moments, no. The reason we love nigga is because you can’t say it. For the first time, we blacks have found something to shield us from your so called enlightenment.
White America, we came here with nothing, you gave us hell and somehow we’ve made a heaven out of it. We stand behind an obsidian gate with our eyes watching God, and you condemn us. Tell the rest of the world that our antics are demonic and demoralizing, maybe because your children find joy in dabbing to all these negro spurituals? Is it because these rhythmic motions remind you of our tribal rituals, that you must educate these savages? But then…you do what you do best.
You steal. As if you haven’t stolen enough already. You raped our mother country, enslaved her children for centuries and left them in the gutter of society with their shackles still on. And then you called us…nigger. which was your biggest mistake because now we have a weapon to use against you.
We dropped the er and replaced it with a to turn this infinitive into a definite tool used to etch our own name into your history books. Before we were African American we were niggas, they think hyphenating and grouping us with them would quell our hearts? We’ve found safety in the same thing that brought us suffering, which is why you will continue to hear it. Everywhere.
On the streets of the city
At the bars you visit on the weekend
And even within the four white walls you call your home.
How unfortunate it must be to have this speck of blackness within your “perfectly” constructed castle.
I know why they hate the word nigga so much though..
Because the they can’t say it.
They don’t want you to be able to say something they can’t
It’s been our key to success since Niggas with attitude came straight out of Compton and convinced the world that it was time to take back what is ours while Kendrick Lamar broke the chains and let american taste the blackest of berries . Or when Huey Newton militarized a revolution equipped with black leather berets, and now the formation is super bowling over the edges as the hive of black bees stirs on this blackest black history month.
They are watching us now, as the brands once burned into our skin are healing and becoming a sigil of solidarity. For years we’ve been their tribute, being sacrificed to play in a gladiators game with orange basketball hoops and beat machines but now we are hungry…starving for a revolution that will be televized, digitized and even quantified so the next generation of children will have these letters embedded in their DNA backbones, no longer associating it with the negative. And we, we have been the enzymes that have been catalyzing this reaction which is finally ready to begin. We are the topisomerase generation,
Because amidst the hashtags, names of innocent souls and spray painted faces on tshirts we have remained the fittest to survive even the harshest conditions that human nature has tested us with. And you know what’s the same, our skin. Our melanin has been bombarded by slurs, switches and even bullets but each scar that forms is a sign of strength. And that brand, that word nigger they thought would be rope that we noose around our necks has become the string that bonds us all together.