Pres. Obama uses the word nigger in a sentence, heads explode. Photo: The White House via Instagram

Pres. Obama in interview with Marc Maron uses the word “nigger,” surprising people at his bluntness.

Photo: The White House via Instagram; President Obama with Mark Maron

“Racism, we are not cured of. And it’s not just a matter of it not being polite to say ‘nigger’ in public. That’s not the measure of whether racism still exists or not. It’s not just a matter of overt discrimination. Societies don’t, overnight, completely erase everything that happened 200 to 300 years prior.” – President Obama

ON A SUNNY summer Monday a black man said the word “nigger” in a podcast to make an important point. When the country found out it was the President of the United States heads began exploding in a festive contagion of reality. Alert the media! No, seriously, alert them that hearing Barack Obama talk about racism using the word “nigger” as he did is actually citing our history of racial etiquette. Talk softly, but carry a noose.

Meanwhile, the world shifted on its axis a bit down south with the quick action of Governor Nikki Haley and other legislators, with GOP honcho Reince Priebus in attendance at the announcement that the Confederate flag will fly no more on the statehouse ground.

With President Obama and Vice President Biden arriving on Friday for services honoring the slain, I’d say action was needed and the sooner the better.

Obama’s remarks came during the interview with Marc Maron, which is available in Maron’s “WTF” podcast series on iTunes.

One guest over on Fox News Channel called him “the rapper in chief.”

Other headlines shirked from daring to print the word, writing “the n-word” in their headlines, including CNN.

Explicit language used as President Obama did today can send a powerful message.

Of course, we’re also the country that couldn’t dare expose Catholic priests for what they were and instead hid their heinous crimes for years. So it’s not surprising that some reacted like infants.

A black man talking about race of the last 50 years can’t do it without using the word “nigger.” It was a word said like a slur, because when whitey uttered it as an invective it was to belittle and dehumanize a man or a woman with black skin.

Addressing race in American can’t be done by being polite, though we can be civil. I bet a lot of people don’t know the difference any more than they do the power of words to evoke the true meaning of disparagement that was only the beginning of keeping African Americans from being full citizens in a land they helped build.