4 The News Argus April 16, 2007 Opinions and EDrroRiALS What we need is a new term to replace the ‘N-word’ Kai Beasley BLACK COLLEGE WIRE One of the best ideas I've heard for fighting racism in America came from the small Texas town of Brazoria. It was Mayor Ken Corley who decided to take a bold step toward achieving racial equality by proposing to make the N-word illegal. Not surprisingly, this pro posal was met with a great deal of protest and eventu ally was withdrawn. Attendance at the Brazoria town hall meeting was so huge that it had to be moved outside for a more inclusive discussion. The arguments against outlawing the word were pretty routine. There was the argument for free speech, and the typical, "If we can't call them nigger, then they can't call us cracker, or honky or Republican (the last one being the most offensive)!" I saw the report on CNN and was amazed at how using the N-word actually brought black and white Brazoria together. There were white people who thought that outlawing the N-word was simply unfair. That's understand able, right? I mean, if they can't call black people by the N-word, then they would have to go through months of research, labora tory hours and red tape to find a new word to insult us with. And then, of course, some black people objected to making the word illegal. And that's understandable, right? I mean, of course one could see that if...WHAT?!?!? (cue record- scratch sound effect). Black people objected to making the N-word illegal? This word has been used for hundreds of years to demean, embarrass and dehumanize. It has been the cornerstone of the house that lynching, racial vio lence and prejudice built. It was often the last thing heard between the short drop and the quick stop. Maybe I'm just not seeing this whole thing right. You know what? Now that I think about it, I am beginning to understand why African Americans would object to getting rid of arguably the worst word in the English language. Allow me to, as the kids say these days, "break it down for you." African Americans have struggled, and fought and in many cases been victori ous over racism, prejudice and a system that has been set up specifically for non whites to fail. And now Mayor Corley of Brazoria, Texas, wants to outlaw the N-word? Is he thinking that we put in all this hard work and pain so that we would not be discriminated against at all? Does he think that we want to be completely successful in stomping out racist sentiments in America? Well, if you think that, Mayor Corley, you're wrong...dead wrong. Now does that argument sound stupid? 'Course it does! Some of Brazoria's black folks raised the argument that, "I use the word, so if you're going to outlaw it, then I'm gonna be the first one you arrest." My opin ion? You should be arrested for allowing your face to be associated with that com ment on national television. Another argument sound ed like, "These young kids out here, they use it as slang, it's cool, it doesn't mean anything." My opin ion? Tell me that it doesn't mean anything the next time a white person calls you nigger. But I ask you, should we really be the ones going on record in protest of outlaw ing such a potent tool of 1«. i !s*r ■ Photo by Sharrod Patterson The ‘N-word’ has been a hot topic for some time among WSSU students. racism? Are we looking for an excuse to keep racism alive? Anyway, I'm just one man. I could be wrong. Maybe we need to hold on to words whose sole purpose is to dehumanize an entire race of people. I mean if we were to get rid of words like that, we would just have one less thing to worry about right? Apparently, accord ing to some residents of Brazoria, that's no good. So if we are in need of such words, at least look at the situation logically. The N-word has gained a lot of bad press lately...gee, it's been about what, 400 years or so, give or take? Because the media have joined in giving the N-word such a bad rap (mainly Paula Zahn...what was she think ing?) we should let the N- word go, and find another one. Let's see, it should probably be something that rolls off the tongue quite nicely. Like, umm... floopa? "What's up, my floopa!?" No, I don't like that. What about "juba?" "Juba, please!" I think that works, it's not as bad because it has no his tory, and on top of that, if we use "juba" in place of the N-word, we can com pletely do away with the N- word. l^ip-Hop is laHouf peace and ;fun, pioneers say :By Jeuron Dove -BLACK COLLEGE WIRE • When people think of hip-hop's ^important female MCs, some of the ■first names that come to mind are MC Lyte, Queen Latifah and even I Lil' Kim. But before all of them there was Sha-rock, who became the first recognized female MC when she rapped alongside the group the Funky Four, founded in 1979, at age 16. She also recorded one of the longest hip-hop records of all time, "Rapping and Rocking The House," which was 15 minutes. Sha-rock, also known as Sharon Green, was one of three old school hip-hop artists who came to North Carolina A&T State University to educate the current generation about "true hip-hop." "We dealt with the streets and gangs, but hip-hop was a way to get away from all that negativity. The culture itself is not negative and rap music should not be all about violence," said Sha-rock. She emphasized that rapping is just one aspect of hip-hop and encouraged audience members to embrace all of it. The four ele ments of hip-hop are rapping. beat-boxing, graffiti and break dancing. Two other early MCs, Busy Bee and Grandmaster Caz, were also at the event, which featured break- dancing by A&T students. "The Origins of Hip Hop" was the result of a collaboration between the Residence Hall Association, the Eta chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity and Segwick and Cedar, a New York-based clothing company that attempts to preserve hip-hop culture. Brian Tennie, president of the association, was working with the Segwick and Cedar to produce a basketball game. The company had the old-school rappers under con tract, and Tennie made a deal to bring them to A&T. On March 16, students learned the true history of hip-hop from some of its earliest pioneers. Busy Bee is often considered the first official solo hip-hop MC. He was known as the "Original Chief Rocker" for his ability to start block parties and keep the attention of the crowd with his shout-outs. Bee was involved in one of the first beefs of hip-hop when he battled the equally legendary Kool Moe Dee. "When I first started doing this in '76, people thought that this hip- hop thing would last no more than about three weeks, but it's 2007 and the culture of hip-hop has taken over the world," said Busy Bee, also known as David Parker. He stressed that hip-hop was built on the principles of peace, love, unity and having fun. Grandmaster Caz, also known as Cassanova Fly, was an original member of the pioneering hip-hop group the Cold Crush Brothers. He said he wrote some of the original lyrics to the 1979 hit "Rapper's Delight," but was not credited. "I started out as a graffiti artist because that was what the girls liked in high school. I had no idea that I wanted to be a DJ or an MC until I went to a party that DJ Kool Here threw, and from that point on, I knew that there was nothing else I wanted to do," said Caz, whose real name is Curtis Fisher. Caz said he harbored no bad feel ings over the "Rapper's Delight" incident because he had new worlds to conquer. He helped make the Cold Crush Brothers one of the most memorable groups in hip-hop history. After the panel discussion, stu dents asked questions ranging from who the speakers considered the best MC today to the role of female rappers and the purpose of "beef" in today's hip-hop scene. Grandmaster Caz named Ludacris as his choice for best MC, citing his creativity and consistency. Sha-Rock chose Black Thought of the Roots for his socially conscious subject matter. On beefs. Busy Bee said that nothing should be taken personally. It is strictly about skill Photo by Sharrod Patterson Hip-hop developed in the ’70s and is still alive today. on the mic and the quarrels should be kept respectful, he said, adding that violence should never be a part of them. Sha-rock said the music industry forces women MCs to dumb themselves down, selling their bodies for records, instead of being strong and intelligent, as is an artist such as Lauryn Hill. Before the event was officially over, all three MCs performed. They had the crowd rocking with them, although these artists were making tracks before most of the students were born. Grandmaster Caz performed his 2000 response track to "Rapper's Delight," "MC Delight." Attendees said they found the event informative and learned something. "I'm into old-school hip-hop, and I can't believe that I got the chance to see some real rap legends in per son," said junior Reggie Warren, a business major. Debate continues over student athletes getting paid for playing sports Michael Shipp Staff Reporter For years, people have questioned whether or not student-athletes should be paid for competing for their schools. There are those who say that col lege athletes should get paid, and others who say they should not get salaries or stipends. They contend that, since many athletes are award ed full scholarships, they should not receive further compensation. : While these scholarships are a pos itive part of college sports, they only "r|take care of tuition. Athletes must ■bear the cost for many other expens- 5es, and with no source of outside income, they often struggle with xnoney matters. p Jamel Virgil, a junior computer sci- (^nce major at Winston-Salem State University, believes athletes should receive salaries for their efforts. "They should get paid because they bring money to the school. But if you do that, you would have to start paying cheerleaders, etc. ..." Michael Rosebrough, a senior political science major, said student athletes "should get paid money for their contributions to the school." Some would then argue that ath letes should simply get a job, but with the demands of school and sports, time for a job is hard to come by. Every player of a college sport puts in countless hours of work to the sport. Instead of going out and getting a job, they must devote much of their time to their sport. Many Division I college athletes get around $200 to $250 a month for living expenses and spending money, but this is small compared to the student who has time to work. While the NCAA and its member schools make millions, even billions, of dollars in TV revenues, clothing deals and advertising contracts, some of the very athletes that the organization promotes can barely scrape by. Simply put. Division I ath letes are making the money, or at least allowing the NCAA to make their money, yet they receive nothing in return. In fact, they are strictly prohibited from receiving money from a source relating to their sport. This simply does not work. College athletes need to get paid. They need to receive salaries or even just small stipends. The NCAA needs to look into this issue now and make the right judgment for the student athletes. Photo by Sharrod Patterson Student athletes stay competitive by staying in shape.