An Open Letter to Jackie Magazine: I'm Not Over It

Dear Jackie, I’m still pissed that you called Rihanna the “Ultimate Niggabitch.” I know, I know, why can’t I get over it? The editor, Eva Hoeke, resigned and issued two sincere "apologies.” Well, you see, the thing is, your flippant use of the word is pretty fucked up. Especially when I read that Hoeke initially tried to brush off the debacle on Twitter as being a joke, a “slang word” that is supposedly used by us in the United States. I’m not sure where she or you got your information from, but you’ve clearly been shown through social media backlash that you were wrong: it's not a joke, it's not "slang" that we all use. Actually, I take that back. I do know where you got this idiotic idea:
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Dear Jackie, I’m still pissed that you called Rihanna the “Ultimate Niggabitch.” I know, I know, why can’t I get over it? The editor, Eva Hoeke, resigned and issued two sincere "apologies.” Well, you see, the thing is, your flippant use of the word is pretty fucked up. Especially when I read that Hoeke initially tried to brush off the debacle on Twitter as being a joke, a “slang word” that is supposedly used by us in the United States. I’m not sure where she or you got your information from, but you’ve clearly been shown through social media backlash that you were wrong: it's not a joke, it's not "slang" that we all use. Actually, I take that back. I do know where you got this idiotic idea:
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Dear Jackie,

I’m still pissed that you called Rihanna the “Ultimate Niggabitch.”

I know, I know, why can’t I get over it? The editor, Eva Hoeke, resigned and issued two sincere "apologies.” Well, you see, the thing is, your flippant use of the word is pretty fucked up. Especially when I read that Hoeke initially tried to brush off the debacle on Twitter as being a joke, a “slang word” that is supposedly used by us in the United States.

I’m not sure where she or you got your information from, but you’ve clearly been shown through social media backlash that you were wrong: it's not a joke, it's not "slang" that we all use. Actually, I take that back. I do know where you got this idiotic idea: rap music. Which is kind of crazy to think that just because a handful of black rappers and entertainers casually toss the word around to describe their own lived experiences, we all have to be pigeonholed into the same stereotypes. Did you really think that Jay Z and Rhianna have the ability to encompass the entire voice of the black community? That we all wear booty shorts, sport huge gold chains, and have decked out rides? Yikes, you did? Well then I guess I should explain why many of us are disgusted by your vernacular choice. Racism is something that many people of color are still subjected to on a daily basis, and though we are all aware that the N-word is still wildly prevalent among many misinformed individuals, it's ridiculous to assume that we would all want to be recognized by such a derogatory name--or that black American women would not be collectively offended when you spread hateful rhetoric to your impressionable readers.

And if I can be honest, I'm more than a little uncomfortable with a predominately white publication referring to a black woman as a “niggabitch.” After all, just because something is culturally popular does not automatically make it acceptable. A beautiful glossy publication like yours could have easily figured it out, if you would have just thought about it. Do you have Google? Its awesome, I would check it out.

Kind Regards,

Contessa Schexnayder