It being ingrained in the African American mentality, is no excuse. Where I live, it is used as a positive term (such as buddy or friend) not only for any other African American, but even as a term for friends of other races. The word is also ingrained at least as deeply in the European American (? I can never figure out what the politically correct term is) mentality as it is the African American one. The problem is that it is either positive or negative depending on the race of the person who uses it, which is as racist as the terms original usage.
Well someone got what I was saying then.
Mine was just a shorter version.