[Ads-l] "Oppressive Language List"

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Mon Jun 28 14:07:58 EDT 2021

Lucky you said "OK sign."

Context is oppression, and words and things mean *always* and *only* what I
say they mean when I say so.

Whatever you think you meant, I probably know better, because language does
not dominate me. *I* dominate language!!!!!!!!!!

(Just a little harmless irony.  Enjoy English!)


On Mon, Jun 28, 2021 at 10:59 AM Peter Reitan <pjreitan at hotmail.com> wrote:

> Please, never use an idiom which has a folk-etymology that causes some
> misinformed people to take offence.
> Hip hip hooray! 👌(OK sign).
> ________________________________
> From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of
> dave at wilton.net <dave at WILTON.NET>
> Sent: Monday, June 28, 2021 7:28:55 AM
> Subject: Re: "Oppressive Language List"
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "dave at wilton.net" <dave at WILTON.NET>
> Subject:      Re: "Oppressive Language List"
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> =0AI agree that the list is badly formed, but a couple of points:=0A =0A1)
> =
> The list was apparently made by students (undergrads?). It does not, as
> far=
>  as I can tell, come from the "university."=0A =0A2) It's not clear if the
> =
> list is backed by any disciplinary force. There is no mention of any
> conseq=
> uences for using the proscribed terms. So, it doesn't appear to be a "free
> =
> speech" issue.=0A =0ASo, it appears that this is a list of suggestions for
> =
> being polite (i.e., avoid unintentionally offending anyone). Given that,
> th=
> e list is not so absurd. "Don't use 'rule of thumb' casually because there
> =
> are some people who will take it amiss" is not bad advice. (I think the
> pro=
> scription against "irregardless" is silly and foolish, but I don't use it
> m=
> yself precisely because some people hate it; I don't have a problem in not
> =
> using it.)=0A =0AFinally, no one has mentioned what I think is the worst
> it=
> em on the list, the people-first approach to referring to people with
> disab=
> ilities. This is a much debated issue in the disability-rights community
> an=
> d there is no consensus. Some prefer "disabled person" over "person with a
> =
> disability" because they consider their disability part of their identity;
> =
> their disability is part of who they are as a person, and the
> "person-first=
> " approach strips them of that part of their identity. (This is perhaps
> mos=
> t strongly felt in the deaf community.) There is no right answer to this
> on=
> e, other than listen to what the the person in question prefers. This one
> d=
> oesn't fall into the "good advice" category.=0A =0A =0A =0A-----Original
> Me=
> ssage-----=0AFrom: "Stephen Goranson" <goranson at DUKE.EDU>=0ASent: Monday,
> J=
> une 28, 2021 8:14am=0ATo: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU=0ASubject: [ADS-L]
> "Oppres=
> sive Language List"=0A=0A=0A=0AI (Brandeis BA '72) did not know some of
> the=
> se offended anyone. Sunlight best disinfectant, Louie? At least the page
> li=
> sting suggestions does reaffirm free speech. Will the Justice student
> paper=
>  no longer celebrate a sports win with "Brandeis Masters
> Bates"?=0A=0ASG=0A=
> =0A------------------------------------------------------------=0AThe
> Ameri=
> can Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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