An Old Southern Word for Competitive Political Racism

I found a term in the book, You All Spoken Here, by Roy Wilder (New York: Viking Penguin 1984) that exactly describes the competitive use of racial rhetoric to beat a political rival. The book’s subtitled ‘A Plunder Room of Words and Phrases used in Common and Not-So-Common Speech As It Is Spoken in Southern Parts of the United States’. In the chapter ‘Reflections on the Political Scene’, it has the term ‘outnigger’, which it defines as ‘Exceed one’s opponent in expressing anti-Black hostility’.

It’s an ugly term, for an ugly practice, and it basically describes the entire Republican stance on race. It’s all carefully veiled, and few of the Republican candidates would ever forthrightly express their hatreds and prejudices in such crude and blatant terms, but nevertheless it describes the boiling hatred they have for Blacks, Mexicans and Muslims, and the way the candidates have competed to express their hostility to those ethnic minorities. It’s couched in the debates about affirmative action programmes and immigration, but nevertheless, it’s still there. And the clear winner in this odious contest is Donald Trump, who has ‘outn*ggered’ everyone when it comes to Mexicans and Muslims.

Of course, this kind of vile rhetoric isn’t confined to the US. It’s been used over here by the Tories and outright Fascist groups like the BNP, ever since the 1970s when some Nazi came up with the slogan, If you want a N*gger for a neighbour, vote Labour’.

And that kind of vile rhetoric isn’t confined to racial groups, either. Under the Tories the right have been doing their utmost to reach new depths smearing and vilifying the unemployed, the poor and the disabled. I think we need a new term to describe this form of political slander.

In the meantime, let’s be brutally honest. Donald Trump is indeed a racist, a throwback to the kind of hick politician associated with the Deep South. And he owes much of his political success so far to outn*ggering everyone in his determination to play on racial fears and hate.

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3 Responses to “An Old Southern Word for Competitive Political Racism”

  1. Florence Says:

    Oh, the disabled and ill and vulnerable of the UK are well aware that they are the new n*ggers on the block. Perhaps an equally offensive term to describe the greater anti-vulnerable rhetoric (and it’s not the sort of language I would personally ever like to hear) would be to “outmong”? Or better perhaps, and less offensive to those being offended would be to “outMengle”? Put simply though we can just continue to use “to IDS” as a term meaning the depraved vilification of the vulnerable.

    • beastrabban Says:

      Absolutely agree with you, Florence. ‘OutMengle’ does describe the government’s attitude to the disabled – killing them off by stealth.

  2. Michelle Thomasson Says:

    What a word you found Florence, sadly very appropriate.

    Yesterday I sent out info about the long arm of the DWP and it’s new ability to access medical records to find out if one is really sick ref:

    I was then asked how could access to such confidential information be allowed? All I could reply was ‘good question’ and that I was still trying to figure out how anyone accepts that people are just a bi-product of a monetised system!

    So could a word be found to go with ‘OutMengle’, one that has nuances of theatrical insincerity with a hard-heartedness where greed and cruel, oppressive, merciless, thoughts inexorably dwell – this state of mind / heart is the only reasonable answer I could give myself because to see the country / world run with some people such as this at the helm is self-destructive madness!

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