Michael Eric Dyson: Obama's Use Of The N-Word "Payoff" For Those Of Us Who Have Been Pressing Him On Race

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On MSNBC this morning, network contributor Michael Eric Dyson reacted to President Obama saying the n-word in an interview with comedian and podcaster Marc Maron. Dyson called Obama's comments an example of President Obama speaking "more articulately about race." Dyson called it a "payoff" for those pushing Obama to speak more explicitly about race.

"Those of us who have been pressing President Obama to speak more explicitly and more articulately about race, this is part of the payoff," Dyson said.

"This is a man who knows so much more than he's been willing to or allowed to speak about in public spaces," Dyson added.

Dyson called Obama's use of the n-word an "intervention" on behalf of American public.

"He chooses his words carefully, he chooses his point of entry carefully, but I think this was an incredibly important moment in intervention on behalf of the American public by our president, the president of the entire United States of America to talk specifically and particularly about using that n-word," Dyson said.

MSNBC ANCHOR: Do you think the use of the word by President Obama distracts from the point he was trying to make, or do you think because he actually went there, he went there with the n-word, that that underscores it.

MICHAEL ERIC DYSON, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: The latter interpretation, I think, is correct. Look, those of us who have been pressing President Obama to speak more explicitly and more articulately about race, this is part of the payoff. This is a man who knows so much more than he's been willing to or allowed to speak about in public spaces.

He chooses his words carefully, he chooses his point of entry carefully, but I think this was an incredibly important moment in intervention on behalf of the American public by our president, the president of the entire United States of America to talk specifically and particularly about using that n-word.

Black people didn't die when white people said the n-word, those who were racist who lynched and castrated and murdered them, they didn't use the n-word, they used the word itself. What he was doing was shocking us. It's a shock to the system, a jarring reminder of the intemperate use of that word and how it's been connected to legacies of white supremacy that he brilliantly and forthrightly has addressed and certainly in this case did again.

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