Founding Fathers vs. Founders

Ittaob at AOL.COM Ittaob at AOL.COM
Mon Jul 30 03:37:25 UTC 2001

    I just read the July 2 Newsweek, which has an article called "Founders
Chic" about Jefferson, Adams, et al. The article calls them the "Founders,"
stating parenthetically "no longer called the Founding Fathers for reasons of
political correctness." This raised several questions in my mind.

    1. When did this happen? I am a well-read attorney (not a linguist), and
this is the first time I've seen the supposed change in terminology. Are
there citations out there? Is this real, or did Newsweek make it up?

    2. Why did this happen? I understand and support avoiding the use of
"men" and other male-derived terms to refer to groups of humans consisting of
men and women.  But, gee, for gosh sakes, the Founding Fathers were all, dare
we say it, men. Why does political correctness even enter into the equation?
To fool some sensitive schoolgirls into thinking, for a year or two, that
there were a few women in the group? I don't get it.

    Will the next article be referring to "T. Jefferson and J. Adams (no
longer called Thomas and John for reasons of political correctness)"?

    By the way, Newsweek elsewhere in the article refers to them as "genuine

    Steve Boatti

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