We should bury the N-word and put 17 feet of dirt over it. At its funeral, I'd ask the musical director to spin the Big Youth version of Hit The Road Jack. I'd be one of the pallbearers, too.
DALTON HIGGINS, Author of Fatherhood 4.0 (Insomniac) and hip-hop shaman (as Daltpak Chopra)
If we believe in ourselves and not the negativity associated with the N-word from the 50s and 60s, it holds no power.
DJ ASSAULT (aka Craig De Sean Adams), performing Friday (January 28) at Nocturne.
Many of the conditions that keep the N- word alive still thrive. People who hold up Huck Finn and Uncle Tom's Cabin as the best literary works on slavery or racism drive me nuts. Maybe they prefer their black history told by white folks. It's like suggesting that Günter Grass's The Tin Drum is a better work about the Holocaust than The Diary Of Anne Frank.
DJANET SEARS, playwright
It's utterly shameful to attempt to reconstitute Mark Twain. I'm embarrassed by the effort. I am an ardent believer in the truth, and that is the opposite of the truth. Should kids be educated in the difference between how artists express themselves today versus the way they've done before? Absolutely. We don't learn from our mistakes by hiding them.
JULIAN FALCONER, human rights lawyer
My daughter was traumatized in her high school class by that word. I propose schools use The Autobiography Of Malcolm X, Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison, Notes From A Hyena's Belly by Nega Mezlekia, The Polished Hoe by Austin Clarke, George And Rue by George Elliott Clarke, Harriet's Daughter by M. NourbeSe Philip, The Book Of Negroes by Lawrence Hill, and my own My Name Is Phillis Wheatley.
AFUA COOPER, scholar, author and poet
The N-word should not be buried. Only white people who use it in the wrong context should be. Curtis Mayfield's Pusher Man and most songs by the Last Poets would suck without it.
KENNY ROBINSON, hosting the Nubian night Sunday (January 30), and Harbourfront's Ebony And Ivory Comedy Jam on February 5.