As previously mentioned regarding the incident at Westercon, an apology has been issued and we are sharing it here. The names have been removed for the privacy of both parties.
You deserve both an apology and an explanation for my use of an ugly and offensive word at Westercon. I have always believed that use of euphemisms for ugly words and ideas has the effect of making it easier for some people to feel self-righteous for not using a slur while continuing to hold the thoughts behind the words. I did not intend the word to be taken as a slur, but a discussion our of history and of the language in Huckleberry Finn.
But I was wrong to use the word. I failed to consider how it would taken by you and by the audience. The fact is that a word that might be appropriate in a university class dealing with slavery or segregation was completely wrong to use as I did. I regret having done so and apologize. I am sorry for any trauma my action has caused you and other people.
Finally, I have never intentionally used words as racial or ethnic slurs, and have never intentionally directed such a slur at any person, and I shall never do so. I again apologize for using the word and I am extremely sorry for doing so.