You all may remember a slightly uncomfortable moment earlier this week when Lisa Lampanelli –a comedian best known for political correctness and being couth — tweeted a picture of her standing with Lena Dunham:
Naturally, the Twitterverse (worst/best word ever) exploded because an old white lady using the word “nigga” in reference to an equally white, if younger, lady was the most controversial thing to happen on Twitter this week. Lena kept silent for the most part, which only pisses people off more and any PR person will tell you is a bad fucking idea. She responded in a very Lena-like way, and I actually thought it was perfect. Just enough to show she’s listening and cares, and not so much Tweeting us over the head with it to the point where I would want to shoot myself:
Whew. Can we all forget about this now? I’m serious. While I also am white, and I also would NEVER use that word or any other formation remotely close to that word in neither a serious nor joking manner, I also think that people love to attack Lena Dunham for just about anything (myself included) and her “silence” did not keep me up at night. She didn’t use the word and she has no control over a loudmouth comedian’s tweets.
It’s also my personal opinion based on my own personal experiences that white people who get into debates over the word “nigga” and its subsequent use by people of all races (Elisabeth Hasselbeck–BARF), most likely didn’t grow up around many black people, and are therefore uncomfortable by anything that would spark a debate in terms of race and what’s okay vs. what’s not okay. They think they’re doing something right by being outraged; maybe they are, maybe they aren’t. Luckily, I grew up around a fair amount of diversity and I realized that may be why I have a completely different perspective than most outlets who reported this story shaking their fists. I also think that a white person being upset about it is completely different than a black person being upset about it, and I’m really not trying to be divisive. Again, I think there are plenty of words in the English language and that the word “nigga” may or may not have its place. But it definitely doesn’t have its place with white people, I think that much we can all agree on.
I think we can also agree that Lisa Lampanelli is a paid comedian who has evolved her entire career out of making people uncomfortable and constantly crossing the boundaries of propriety. I doubt that most people Lena Dunham’s age even knew who she was before this, and now there’s a whole generation who knows who she is now if they didn’t before. Attacking her for it is only going to fan the flames of her fame even more. She knew what she was doing, and it wasn’t out of character for her at all. So if you’re someone who’s incredibly bothered by this whole debacle… shut up about it.