Mike Tyson & Comedian Kenan Thompson Get Into Heated Debate About Using The N Word: You Can’t Control The Way I F*cking Think N*gga!

Mike Tyson, Kenan Thompson

Mike Tyson And Kenan Thompson Get Into Heated Debate About Using The N Word: You Can’t Control The Way I F*cking Think N*gga!

Celebrity entertainers Mike Tyson and Kenan Thompson recently had a culture conversation that got a bit intense.

During a resurfaced episode of the championship boxer’s popular podcast Hotboxin’ with Mike TysonKenan Thompson and Mike Tyson went head to head, debating use of the n word. While the 44-year-old comedic actor stood strong in his belief that the derogatory term does more harm than good, Tyson vehemently disagreed. The 56-year-old heavyweight champ stated he believes if “he’s not a n*gga he’s nothing”, adding that he doesn’t know why that’s the case – but that’s just the way things are.

The conversation sparked after Tyson excitingly stated he’s glad the slang word hasn’t been cancelled yet. He said:

“I’m so happy no one called me and said stop that f*cking n*gga word n*gga…you know….n*gga not good no more…I like n*gga….the white man gave me then gone take it away….N*gga (x6),”

Mike Tyson

Continuing, the former athlete expressed his belief that the word will never stopped being used, stating:

“Let me tell you something about the word n*gga….A n*gga don’t even have to be involved for it to be n*gga sh*t. So how you gone stop people from stop saying the word n*gga?”

However Thompson rebutted with an optimistic response, stating:

“Yea I don’t know. It’s a battle worth fighting man because that word has got the worse connotation and it’s holding back a certain respect or outlook on this culture.”

Kenan Thompson

As the conversation escalates, the two continue going round for round debating whether or not the word should continue to survive. Tyson repeats multiple times that he’s a n*gga and will always be such because it’s what he believes, adding it’s also the way people will always perceive him.

While Thompson continuously rebutts his fellow entertainer with words of affirmation, and visions of an alternate reality. Additionally pointing out that no other culture “self deprecates” in the manner Black people do. At one point in the video, after Tyson tells the former All That Star that his beliefs just aren’t reality, to which the comedian responds:

“We have to make it a reality. I don’t think it’s an impossible thing I just think the people that can influence things like yourself [must] do the work.”


After a few more back and forths, Tyson begins to get frustrated with Thompsons “unrealistic” optimism. Before getting amped, Tyson stated:

“Check this out, me me Mike, If I’m not a n*gga I’m nothing”

To which Thompson quickly rebuttals:

“Not true”

Not backing down, Tyson double’s down on his stance, stating:

“No no it’s true if I believe it’s true”

To which Thompson rebutted again with optimism, stating:

“No but you shouldn’t believe that”

This is the point in the conversation where things got hot. Irritated that Thompson is trying to convince him he’s more than a n*gga, Tyson stated:

“No no, you can’t control the way I f*cking think n*gga….If I’m not a n*gga I’m nothing….so don’t tell me I’m not…It’s that way. I don’t why but it’s that way…It’s nothing you can do, your education, that’s the way I’m programmed.”

Mike Tyson

Although sitting in arm’s reach of the ear biting athlete, Thompson continued to stand his ground, going on to address the issue of police historically associating Black people negatively to the term. Before the two agreed to disagree, he stated:

“We supposed to just accept the norm because it’s just what’s happening at the time….The connotation that happens when you’re at the mercy of a motherf*cker that is looking at you as a n*gga that’s a problem.”

Offering more words of affirmation to Tyson, Thompson continued:

“I look at you as a King my brother….I look at you as one of the greatest people that ever walked this plant. The things that you have done in your lifetime is so far away from the original connotation of that word its crazy.”

Kenan Thompson

To which Tyson responded:

“You don’t know my shadow….My shadow….it counterproducts everything you say about me brother.”

Thompson seemingly ended the debate, with one final message of truth and affirmation. He stated:

“I know what you’ve done in the light my brother. You can’t have a shadow without the light. And what you’ve done in the light is phenomenal.”

You can watch the full interview below.

Who do you think proved their points the best during the debate? Tell us in the comments! 

Authored by: Kay Johnson