My viewpoint: He miscalculated the sensitivity of his audience or the domain of his demographic
Heres a passage that rings very true.
This is my thing about the n-word. No one should use it, period. Cut the crap about endearment and the "a" vs. "er" stuff because regardless of the ending, it's still the same word. Don't turn around and call your friends the n-word, and then be ready to punch someone in the face when you hear them use it if they're not black. It's a word that anyone in the world is free to use. The double standard is completely ignorant. Now as for regards to what John Mayer said, I was really expecting it to be outlandish and blatantly offensive, but what he said wasn't either of those at all. If you look at what he said in context, it's nothing to be riled up about. There's a certain sensitivity among some people who purposely choose to be offended by every little statement.