Opinion

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Re: “We bare some of blame for ‘nigger,'” 2/11

I am a former UM student from the ’60s era. I read The Hurricane online and read this article. I have a couple of comments that I’d like to share with you.

When I went to UM, we had a healthy black population on campus owing to large federal grants and the civil rights movement of the ’60s and matching funds. Ray Bellamy was UM’s first black football player and for that matter, the first to integrate any southern University from Texas to the the Atlantic Ocean, including FSU and UF.

The number of hate mails and death threats Ray received that began with that horrible word in all its forms (endearing or not) is untallyable. He was the Jackie Robinson of Southern College Sports. He also served a term as elected President of Student Government at UM. No one to this day uses that term with him and in no form is it endearing to him. As a friend of his I can attest to that.

This is no assault on Vontilla Steven, but just another opportunity to pass on the recent history of why that word is so attrocious. I used to watch Ray suffer with the racism when he walked around campus or didn’t get the recognition he deserved, plus the bags of hate mail that arrived on a timely basis.

I also recall Richard Pryor discussing how when he went to Africa, there were no “niggas” there, and that he would never use that expression again-and never did. It has lasted with me to this moment since I heard it on his movie Live In Concert in the ’70s.

As you might guess, I am 54 years old and far from a fuddy duddy, but nevertheless, I have thought it was long overdue for black folk, including my own wife, a UM grad , to quit using the expression. I think its time. I am a Jew and we would never think of using kike , yid or shinny as an endearing term.

Thanks for your article.

Harmon Brody, alum

February 15, 2005

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

Before Daniel Carter decided to sign with the Pittsburgh Panthers out of St. Thomas Aquinas, the fou ...

Lots of nuggets on new UM quarterback Tate Martell, the fallout and Jarren Williams’ reaction: ▪ Whe ...

Katie Meier is a legend at Duke. Her photo hangs in the concourse at Cameron Indoor Arena. She was t ...

New University of Miami head coach Manny Diaz was asked on the radio the morning after he was hired, ...

Jalen Hurts is off the market — and he’s not making his way to South Florida. The former Alabama Cri ...

Miami Transplant Institute performed 681 transplants during 2018, setting a new national record in k ...

Jazz aficionados launch new video series by sharing invaluable performance techniques. ...

Gisela Vega, the former associate director of LGBTQA Initiatives at Florida International University ...

With new “personas” allowing for a more personalized mobile experience, the redesigned University of ...

Teams of scholars will use U-LINK grants to examine ways to reduce opportunity gaps and biases in mu ...

Miami released its 2019 football schedule highlighted by a season-opening matchup against Florida in ...

University of Miami Athletics announced Thursday that ESPN reporter and UM alumna Allison Williams w ...

University of Miami head women's volleyball coach Jose "Keno" Gandara announced Monda ...

After a weekend bye, the Miami women's basketball team resumes action Thursday evening at 7 p.m ...

University of Miami Athletics announced Monday that it will host its fifth annual Celebration of Wom ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.