**** **** ******

I apologize for the offensive and inflammatory title of this post, though the subject matter demands clarity of language. For those who do not track such circuses, the previously undefeated University of Kentucky men’s basketball team was dispatched by a largely undiverse squad from the University of Wisconsin on Saturday night. Wallowing in the disappointment of defeat, UK point guard Andrew Harrison mumbled a racial curse and epithet that was captured by live microphone. Several media outlets went so far as to actually print the verboten phrase in the format I will now quote: “f*** that n*****.”

This utterance caused a minor flailing among that flotsam of failed journalism called ‘sports reporters.’ A group that quickly scrambled a conclave to ascertain the only relevant question: Was that racist? To the relief of all, white smoke promptly appeared indicating a decision had been reached:

Not racist.

Not Racist!


Of course this result sat particularly poorly with those obtuse high-fivers who still believe America features principled standards of behavior. I haven’t much digested their points, though I would imagine they’d ask what if one of Kentucky’s white starters had said the same thing of a black Wisconsin player? Then I realized Kentucky has no white starters. So let’s say a white player in UK’s 10-man rotation. Umm well alright, let’s just consider it as a hypothetical. Not everything can Look Like America, you know.

So if Kentucky actually allowed white players on the court, and one of them said “**** ** **** ******” to an opposing black player, what would be the results? Chronologically, a) loss of scholarship, b) expulsion from the university, and c) blacklisting from the NBA, to start. And that’s prior to a Holder Justice Department(sic) decision on hate crime enhancements. The latter hinging on whether any statuary overheard the remarks. All these sanctions being ones Mr. Harrison is likely to avoid. And that’s fine with me.

He was merely a sore losing teen who failed to harness his inner voice while impotently cursing at the victor. That he didn’t promptly stuff his mouth with currency and hose down the opposition with a horizontal grip is a testament to his stoicism. That is to say, it was all nothingness. The Wisconsin player wasn’t injured a whit by these knock-out mumbles, whether or not raysis in intent. Who on Earth cares if Harrison had race on the mind? What is this, a country full of hysterical hypocrites with the emotional resilience of a faberge egg? Well anyway…

Yet how striking to hear a media that would normally have rent multiple panties in apoplexy, now succumbing to mature equanimity. Ahh well, not really a big deal you see. Players talk trash all the time. Besides he didn’t say any of that on a fraternity bus. One would think they’d feel a bit sheepish at the obviousness of it all. But a little rationalization goes a long way on the south slope of the bell curve. And so Mr. Harrison will survive this swim through the murky depths of uncharted American racism. Perhaps even to make millions in the NBA. And in that seven figure stratosphere, he will truly come to know the horrors of oppression.

Though I can’t help but presume if he had instead muttered a confession to hiding a body under Rupp Arena, it would have been met by the same reporters with comparative shrugs of indifference. That is until the inevitable misunderstanding: Wait, did he just say hide a ******’* body?!


8 thoughts on “**** **** ******

  1. The entire problem with this double standard is the over-the-top social (and sometimes literal – expulsion, suspension etc) punishment of whites for use of the word. I think a lot of (white/conservative/whatever) people have already succumbed to accepting the persistent social decapitation of Riley Cooper, Private Frat Bus, et al. and are unfortunately now grabbing the pitchforks over black use of the word due to this constant media beatdown over the last few years of “the unusable n-word”. This is the wrong approach. It is obviously a problem if we are – even through social stigma – banning a word for use by one racial group, and not another, but it is also a problem to ban a word altogether. I’m not sure which position you are advocating for here, and it is obvious that the differing standards of punishment must be addressed, but isnt it ridiculous that an off-hand use of a single word prompts 24-hour media coverage for anyone white or black? I’m not going to denounce Harrison for what he said. The fact that it is not clear to everyone that this was a dave chappelle-style joke (a la Charlie Murphy/Rick James something like those sketches) is baffling and concerning to me, but regardless I don’t think the argument should be “if I cant say it, he cant say it!” as much as “why are we banning words for one group or anyone for that matter?”

    • I’m advocating for the impoverishment of the ridiculous r-word. That this term is presently capable of generating imprisonment, ruination, and national hysteria is a testament to the extent of contemporary social folly.

      What Harrison said was of no import to anyone (regardless of what motivations swirled in his cortex). And my secondary point was that suddenly the media agrees.

      • Better expressed than I could do… but I agree wholeheartedly haha. The media will always choose the path of GREATEST resistance or the one that causes the greatest friction between races/sexes/whathaveyou. Of course nowadays this means punishing all perceived inequity white>black male>female,straight>gay to the fullest extent, and forgiving that same treatment from black>white, female>male, gay>straight. this is simply another manifestation.

  2. I think the Chinese museum curators will get a great chuckle from our childishly fastidious asterisk substitutions. Everyone knows what the words are, but they can’t actually be spelled out unless coating oneself in goat’s blood. The N-WORD

    What N-word is that?


    We may know, but certainly can’t say.

    I swear, there’s swinging ballsacs in the Amazon rainforest attached to less superstitious natives than in the modern West.

    • “I swear, there’s swinging ballsacs in the Amazon rainforest attached to less superstitious natives than in the modern West.”


  3. Pingback: This Week in Reaction (2015/04/10) | The Reactivity Place

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