The word or term has been outdated for some time now, in fact many younger people are vaguely familiar with it and many folks of my generation view the word as even offensive. Many of your more politically aware Afrikan American use the term to almost mean "Uncle Tom." The U.S. Census Bureau will reduce the options to “Black” or “African-American” starting next year. The new language will be included in its annual American Community Survey, which reaches upwards of 3.5 million U.S. households.
The word Negro dates back five centuries to when the Portuguese/Spanish adjective, negro, meaning black, referring to the skin complexion of the West Afrikans they encountered, some how became transliterated or translated becoming a noun, and thus the Negro was created. Although the first U.S. census, which was taken in 1790, only had three different categories of people-- “free White,” “all other free persons” and “slaves,” and the term “Negro” wouldn't officially appear on the census until, 1900, the term had been used much earlier in the U.S. as well as in other Western nations. The Afrikan population in the U.S. nevertheless, has used a variety of nomenclatures to describe themselves, beginning with Afrikan, moving to Colored, then to Negro, and in the early 80's returning to Afrika, i.e., Afrikan American. Yet, earlier during the 1920's to use the term Negro was considered radical or progressive as it replaced the term colored. Remember that the most powerful "Black" organization was the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). But it was the African Nationalist Pioneer Movement under the leadership of the Afrikan Dominican Carlos Cook, that organized a conference in 1959 that first established when referring to our color, black was the appropriate term, and when referring to our race, Afrikan was the apropos word. In addition to Cook, the Barbadian radical Richard B. Moore also argued for the term Afrikan American in his book, The Name Negro: Its Origin and Evil Use. One of the points Dr. John Henrik Clarke use to make is a people are identified by land, history and culture. I use to tell my students that an Italian American can go to a map and find a land called Italy, and that an Irish American can do the same. They can locate Europe on a map but can a Black or a Negro find a place called "Blacklandia" or "Negroland"? It only makes sense then that if a Black person or a supposed Negro came from Afrika, then they must in fact be Afrikans, just as a person from European is a European.
The government did give consideration to changing the term Negro in the 2010 census but decided against it arguing that there was still a segment of the U.S. population that personally identified with the term, especially older Blacks living in the South. But according to Nicholas Jones, chief of the bureau’s racial statistics branch, the census research, using public feedback, has now confirmed that most Black Americans no longer identify with the term and find it “offensive.” I say to that, "It's about damn time"!!! Now that the Negro is gone in terms of the census lets kill him politically and culturally as well. Long live the Afrikan!