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Watch Trinidad James & CNN Commentator Clash Over N-Word Usage

Trinidad James
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Trinidad James on CNN on March 16, 2015.

No surprise: A discussion on CNN Monday night about who can say the n-word got pretty heated. 

Conservative commenter Ben Ferguson said that many rappers -- including Trinidad James, who was part of the panel -- profited from saying the n-word, which is why they won't stop using it. 

"I'll be honest with you," Ferguson told James while discussing why no one should say the word ever. "I think you know that we should probably get rid of the n-word, but in reality, I think many rappers are afraid they will lose out on money and sales and street cred if they don't stop using the word."

James, naturally, vehemently disagreed with that assessment. "We use the word because that's how we came up...I'm making money off of doing music and being creative, sir," James said. "I'm not making money just because I use the n-word. Nobody goes to buy an album because it's full of the n-word."

"Trinidad, you wouldn't be on this show tonight if it wasn't for using the n-word in your rap music," Ferguson replied. "Let's be honest."

James and his music are in the news this week because, as CNN points out, his song "All Gold Everything," is "heard playing in the background as the house mother of the University of Oklahoma Sigma Alpha Epsilon house -- known as Mom B. -- was caught on a Vine video repeating the n-word seven times on camera."

The full exchange about the word can be viewed below. 

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