If Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) scientists want Congress fund their important work on behalf of all of us, there are seven words to avoid in any budget proposals. Looking at the list is pretty upsetting, but the reasoning behind the suggested ban is terrifying in a country that believes in freedom of speech and democratic values.
Diversity is apparently a word that upsets many of our elected representatives. Perhaps it’s their fear of Millennial voters who embrace all types of diversity to a great degree. As our country grows more racially and ethnically diverse, the writing is on the wall. Millennials are more tolerant and accepting of other forms of diversity as well. Differences in ability, family structure, religion, culture, socio-economic status, and gender identification are far less important to them than to older generations of Americans. A recent survey that revealed 71 percent of Millennials would prefer a third party, 63 percent disapprove of Donald Trump, 60 percent disapprove of Congress, and 59 percent have an unfavorable view of the Republican party. So let’s avoid the “D” word, as it portends a future that will be far more, well, diverse.
Fetus is a science word. The preferred language is probably unborn child. The curious thing here is the lack of concern for the welfare of that unborn child once it’s actually born. If that child happens to be born to a struggling single mother or a family already burdened with too many children and too little money or as a result of rape or incest, well that’s too bad. The parents need to suck it up and deal with it. Being pro-life is disconnected from issues like healthcare, education, and overall child welfare, welfare most likely also being a non-preferred word.
Transgender is a term many would prefer did not exist. LBGTQ rights aren’t needed if sexual orientation and identity is viewed as a lifestyle choice that is somehow both unnatural and against religious teaching. Identifying as transgender is anathema, but maybe ignore Caitlyn (formerly Bruce) Jenner because she’s a Republican. And by all means, let’s keep those bathrooms and locker rooms straight.
Vulnerable – OMG, what’s wrong with that? I guess it’s showing weakness to be kind and empathic when strength is what matters. Those who are vulnerable may be helpless, powerless, or defenseless. They may need special care, support, or protection because they are old, disabled, or at risk of abuse or neglect. To care about folks who are vulnerable makes you a snowflake. Better to be a cold, unyielding block of ice.
Entitlement is a huge no-no for politicians who support the favor-the-rich tax plan. No one is entitled to anything. Even if you have worked all of your life and paid into social security, you are not entitled to that benefit if the money is needed to pay down the huge deficit that will result from the new tax plan. Ditto for Medicare. Save your own money for healthcare in your golden years. If you have no gold to bring into those years, don’t get sick.
Science-based and evidence-based are clearly out of favor by those who believe in alternate facts. According to the Washington Post, the suggested phrase is, “CDC bases its recommendations on science in consideration with community standards and wishes.” It is highly recommended that scientists seeking CDC funding avoid stating the importance of science and evidence, especially when it relates to climate change. Also, don’t expect funding to study the number one public health problem in America, gun violence. For more than 20 years, Congress has banned the CDC from conducting research into the causes and prevention of gun violence. If we actually studied and understood this problem, we might have to entertain policies aimed at preventing it. And you know who would not want that to happen.
According to the New York Times, while these words are not officially banned, using them will make it difficult for the Republican-controlled Congress to approve budget proposals that contain them. It’s just a matter of choosing the politically correct words.
In case you are as confused as I am by this non-banned but recommended edict concerning the use of these seven bad words, Kevin Drum, a blogger for Mother Jones magazine, suggests a complete set of substitutions:
- Diversity = anti-white
- Fetus = unborn child
- Transgender = deviant
- Vulnerable = snowflake
- Entitlement = welfare
- Science-based = atheist
- Evidence-based = elitist
OK, now I understand. Everything I believe in and care about is wrong. But I am not alone, so the actual snowflakes in Congress that won’t fund proposals that include these seven words better watch out. A new generation of voters is coming. Change is inevitable. And lots of us, regardless of age, are woke.