For about three years now I have been receiving little notes in my e-mail box. It actually started when I had to fix my mom’s email account and found that she was getting them, when I went to investigate the website I found I liked what I was seeing. I remember I got one right after Andy died. Something about how life goes on – it was exactly what I did not want to hear.
So I sent a letter back to the e-mail address from which it came never expecting a response. Mike actually sent one back. He told me that things happen for a reason and while we do not always understand why these are the times when the Universe is pushing us, not as a test but instead to be better because the Universe knows we can, or something like that.
At the time it did very little to make me feel better about the fact that my best friend and brother was dead. However as much as I wanted to end my association with TuT.Com out of annoyance and bitter anger over something that they really had nothing to do with I left the email subscription going and have since realized that annoyingly Mike has a habit of sending out exactly what you need to hear when you need to hear it.
Maybe there really is a universal birdie speaking through him I do not know but what I know is this:
Last night I was very much offended, and angry because of the use of the N word. Today I myself used it more times in defending my argument then I have my entire life, I am not proud of this I am in fact rather disgusted by it but none the less I did.
For me growing up the way I did, with the amount of abuse I grew up with, with the amount of emotional, physical and verbal torture I grew up with the N word had a very abusive effect on me…as it was meant to. Predictably the Universe is aware of this and sent this message to me this afternoon:
Find the good in what they said or asked, Devon.
It’s always there, even if they didn’t mean for it to be there.
It hit me – I am never going to convince people saying the N word is not okay just like I am not going to convince people to attempt to take back the Swastika because it was once a symbol of peace.
I had this conversation with my best sister friend Kelly today – I explained the situation to her and told her flat out I needed an unbiased opinion (the other two women I asked, Melina and Nicole are also black like myself) this is what she had to say:
There is no reason for anyone to ever use that word. It is a word used to degrade humiliate and abuse. People of color were owned, by white people for hundreds of years. Hung by their necks because they dared to speak to a white person. They were beaten, raped abused and tortured because of the color of their skin, No there is no excuse for the use of that word…Ever. Nor is there an excuse to stand by and be un-offended or un-apologetic about allowing others to use it in the presence of human beings
Part of me thinks I am crazy to be offended but the other half of me knows damned well that the only reason I allowed the word to be used in my presence all these years (and I do mean twenty plus of them) was because I was too scared to stand up and say that I found it offensive. My best friends are respectful enough to know never to say it – some people simply refuse to say it when I am around but everyone I know loves me enough to understand why it hurts, without having to know what it has done to me personally.
So to the universe I say thanks for allowing me to find my stance – at least on this topic.