What Words Define You?
Once upon a time people could tell an Irish, Polish, English, blond, fat guy, off-color joke without the threat of a lawsuit. People understood the difference between a bully and a government hell-bent on taking away their constitutional rights (Consequently, people could discern that the latter is much worse than the former). In fact, people did something remarkable: They taught their children to fight back. Imagine that? People understood the difference between rights and responsibilities. OMG, they even possessed the common sense to look both ways before crossing the street. They actually understood that a few lines on the roadway didn’t guarantee their safety. Furthermore, people who graduated from high school didn’t type out nuggets of information like, “how r u? i m w8ng 4 $ from gov. GOT FOOD?”
Where did we go wrong? Was it when we stopped teaching cursive writing, math, science, spelling, and grammar? Was it when we substituted computers for reality? I believe one of the elements is the change in attitude toward the words that define humanity. That brings me to the topic of this blog: The 8 top words I hate, and why.
I’ll start with the word I hate the most:
TRAINING: You’re supposed to train circus animals and educate people. Look at the difference between training and education.
- Training: “You want an A? Learn this pre-formulated crap, pass a test and you get an A. Good boy! Here’s a bumper sticker for your mom’s car.” The result is a kid who can’t spell, write a sentence or do research.
- Education: “You’re interested in Roman History? Start with this list of books, do your research, and I’ll teach you critical thinking.” The result is a kid who learns the art of debate instead of the rhetoric of hate.
SUBMIT: The word most commonly used on the button you push when you’re on the internet. It used to be called the “send” button. Let’s look at the difference between submit and send.
- Submit: To yield to the authority or will of another.
- Send: Descriptions include words such as “cause” “throw” “deliver” and “dispatch” but every definition is proactive, not enslaving.
USER: In the beginning there were customers, people who helped business owners stay in business by buying their products. We were givers, providers of money that helped people keep their jobs. Then the word morphed into “consumers,” a gentle word masking the reality of what we had become in the eyes of business people and the elite: users. When computers became popular, we were called users, a term that might possibly place us one notch above “useless eater.” I’d rather be called a customer in the store and a computerer for any computer operator related definitions, but there’s no such word. Yet. Then there’s the word “end user.” That has a connotation all its own. As my father would have said, “I ain’t gonna go there.”
EMPOWERMENT: A word liberally used by the same politicians who are hell bent on taking away your constitutional rights.
PUBLIC RELATIONS: Especially politically correct public relations. An example? Taking a simple name like “Sunland,” an institution for people with intellectual disabilities, and changing it to “Tacachale (New Beginnings in another language)” to change the institution’s image. How do most people remember the new and improved name? By calling it Taco Charlies. Why was it changed? Sunland was synonymous with abuse toward vulnerable people so a new name was pulled out of a politically correct grab bag, a name that no one but a Native American knows how to pronounce. Do the individuals who live there care about the public relations aspects of a name change? No. Like most other people in the world, the individuals living there just want to be safe, happy, appreciated, loved, warm and fed. Achieving that takes more than a name change to accomplish. What will most people who drive by the institution tell you? “That’s Sunland, where retarded people live.” Think about how much it must have cost to change the name on anything that once said “Sunland” just to improve an image. Has our common sense evaporated into the cosmos?
POLITICALLY CORRECT: Proof that our common sense has evaporated into the cosmos. If you don’t understand why, you’re not paying attention. Look at the difference between political correctness and self-responsibility.
- Political correctness: Training people to be empowered to demand their rights by submitting to the governmental definition of what, exactly, those rights are supposed to be.
- Self-Responsibility: Being educated, doing your own research and coming to your own conclusions while taking responsibility for your own life.
SERENDIPITY: Luck or Fate. Today’s pet rock of the word world. As far as I’m concerned, it has a special place in hell.
(____ )-AMERICAN: The act of defining a legal US resident by his or her race, color or creed while being told you can’t discriminate by race, color or creed. If I moved to India, people would laugh if I said I was a USA-Indian and the guy next door was African-Indian or his neighbor was an Italian-Indian married to a Chinese-Indian. C’mon people! Common Sense! If you live in the United States of America you are a legal US resident. This is a melting pot, not a mint and cheese lasagna topped with jalapeno’s, whipped cream and chocolate syrup.
Think about it.
Do you want to be trained like a circus animal and swallow any crap you’re told to eat? Do you want to submit? Do you want your fate to be in the hands of politically correct politicians who think it’s all right to pass a monstrous bill without reading it first? Is it more important to make sure your child learns to tattle on their classmates to “big brother” than to learn the social art of getting their buddies together to beat up the bully and find other ways to get him to back off?
Life isn’t fair. There is no such thing as social justice, and there never will be. If you live in a place where everyone has the same color hair, skin, eyes, height, and weight, people are going to be categorized by the shape of their noses, the size of their hands, and the length of their feet.. Until there are no more beauty contests, IQ tests, Reality shows, famous idols or gossip columns there will be inequality in the world.
The best you can hope for is to be educated, do your research, and take responsibility for your own life. If you can’t get like minds together to demand a little respect, like Martin Luther King did, or take responsibility for your own life, admit it and live with the consequences. In the meantime, I’m going to avoid being defined by words that serve only to try and strip the humanity from my heart, soul and mind.