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v29_obamaThe “N-word” has become synonymous with the most disrespectful and commonly used ethnic slur to refer to black people. The word suggests that its target is extremely unsophisticated.

When you look at the current racial climate in the United States, you will find that people have found it comfortable to spew their racist rhetoric and express their racist actions.

There are some that boldly use the “N-word” without fear or reservation. However, there are others that don’t have the guts to say it directly, so they resort to using code wording.

This is nothing new. As they say; same thing, different day.

Bob Herbert, a New York Times columnist, reported on a 1981 interview that was published in Southern Politics in the 1990s by Alexander P. Lamis, that speaks to the issue I raise.

In this interview, Lee Atwater, former Chairman of the Republican National Committee, discussed politics in the South. Atwater said:

“You start out in 1954 by saying, “Nigger, nigger, nigger.” By 1968 you can’t say “nigger”—that hurts you. Backfires. So you say stuff like forced busing, states’ rights and all that stuff. You’re getting so abstract now [that] you’re talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you’re talking about are totally economic things and a by-product of them is [that] blacks get hurt worse than whites. And subconsciously maybe that is part of it. I’m not saying that. But I’m saying that if it is getting that abstract, and that coded, that we are doing away with the racial problem one way or the other. You follow me—because obviously sitting around saying, “We want to cut this,” is much more abstract than even the busing thing, and a hell of a lot more abstract than “Nigger, nigger”.”

Because America has a Black president, they have decided to use President Obama as the poster child for their racist views.

‘Obama’ has become the new “N-word”.

Whether at rallies or at events, you see signs and effigies, depicting the President of the United States as a monkey or talking about his culture and race, more than his politics.

What does a watermelon have to do with running the country? Or a monkey?


So like Lee Atwater said, they don’t use the “N-word” anymore. They can just say ‘Obama’ and folks are able to decipher what it means.

If you talk about helping poor and disenfranchised people, you blame it on ‘Obama’.

If you want to talk about leveling the playing field on taxes and economics, then you blame ‘Obama’ for wanting to be Robin Hood; robbing the rich and giving to the poor or to other Black folks.

When they talk about healthcare or welfare or social services or anything that goes to helping uplift the Black race, they use the name ‘Obama’ in a sort of crafty way to turn his name into something evil and something to be disdained.

They called the Affordable Care Act, ‘Obamacare’.

They called ‘Obama’ a socialist or compare him to Adolf Hitler and the Nazis.

They call ‘Obama’ the worst president to ever serve.

All for the sake of planting a seed in the minds of people that to hear the name and say the name ‘Obama’ is the equivalent of pure evil and what is bad.

So, the next time you hear the name ‘Obama’ and see the context in which it is used, be sure to remember that you read it hear first.

Don’t let the name ‘Obama’ become a sign of disrespect or a sign of embarrassment for you my black brother and black sister.

Jeffrey L. Boney is Associate Editor for the Houston Forward Times newspaper, a Next Generation Project Fellow and a dynamic, international speaker. Jeffrey is the Founder and CEO of the Texas Business Alliance and is an experienced entrepreneur and business development strategist. If you would like to request Jeffrey as a speaker, you can reach him at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Houston Forward Times, or any employee thereof. The Houston Forward Times is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by JBoney Speaks.


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