Bin Laden and PC

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Wed May 4 17:47:23 UTC 2011

P.S.:  Last time I heard (which may have been in WWII, vicariously) secret
code names were assigned randomly from a big book of usable code names.  The
idea is/was that the referent's relationship to the name should not be
conducive to interpretation.

If the administration wants to pay me in the mid to upper six-figure range
to eliminate potentially non-PC code words from the big book of possible
secret names, I'm ready.

On Wed, May 4, 2011 at 1:39 PM, Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at>wrote:

> I think saying "Bang! You're dead!" would have been sufficient, because
> language is loaded weapon.
> Peace.
> JL
>   On Wed, May 4, 2011 at 1:27 PM, Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at>wrote:
>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>> -----------------------
>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>> Poster:       Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>
>> Subject:      Re: Bin Laden and PC
>> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> At 1:16 PM -0400 5/4/11, Wilson Gray wrote:
>> >
>> >OTOH, I have a problem with the use of "KIA," in a case like this. KIA
>> >implies that, like a red-blooded American defender of our freedom,
>> >Usama had died in combat. I haven't read the news particularly
>> >closely, but my impression is that Usama was basically a sitting duck,
>> >not engaged in any kind of pro-, or even re-, active defense of
>> >himself and al-Qaida.
>> >
>> Well, after all, bin Laden was killed in the course of the Navy
>> Seals' action even if not his own.  After all, KIA doesn't specify
>> whose action the killee was killed in.  Underspecification strikes
>> again!
>> LH
>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>> The American Dialect Society -
> --
>  "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the
> truth."

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

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