Author Topic: Trendy Words I Do Not Like  (Read 1520 times)

ergative

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #60 on: September 14, 2020, 08:36:54 AM »
"Dog whistle" is belittling because it implicitly accuses those to whom the "dog whistle" is allegedly directed of being prone to mindless, animal reactions.  I've noticed that it is regularly used by mainstream news outlets (I'm looking at you, "New York Times!") of any unprogressive utterance made by right-of-center pundits, officials, or candidates.  In other words, those who support such people are no more thoughtful than dogs responding to a whistle.  It speaks volumes about the contempt with which those who use the expression hold those of whom they are using it.

In a sense, it's a lot like "virtue signaling."  It's something used to shout down others.  One expression is used by those on one side of the divide, the other is used by those on the opposite side.

I think you've misunderstood this phrase. A dog whistle is a whistle, used for training, that dogs can hear but humans cannot (because it is too high pitched). So the metaphor is that a "dog whistle" is a message that that insiders will understand but outsiders will not (and so presumably not react negatively to), e.g.,., a coded racist message that fellow-racists will appreciate but will appear benign or go unnoticed by others.
However, when you start saying the quiet part out loud, it is no longer a dog whistle. I don't think we have many left at this point.

But the beauty of calling something a "dog-whistle" is that it allows you to make a perfectly non-controversial statement off-limits.  For instance, the vast majority of people would say the a human being's worth does not depend on the colour of the person's skin. So, "All lives matter" would be what most people believe. However, by calling it a "dog-whistle to white supremacists" it implies that it's something no decent person would say. Similarly, "Only biological women have uteruses" is scientifically accurate, but by calling it a "dog-whistle to transphobes" it becomes off-limits in polite society.

It's a great way to prevent a point of view (or an objective but inconvenient fact) from being stated without ever having to make an argument to suggest why it is wrong.

Good points there.

When statements become co-opted by appalling people to express appalling views, we tend to stop using them. Swastikas used to be unobjectionable symbols in Hindu and Celtic art and religion before Nazis ruined them. Likewise, 'all lives matter' is self-evidently true in its literal meaning, but the people who use it to mean 'I don't want to have to care about police brutality directed at black people' have ruined it. No one thinks 'all lives matter' as a literal proposition is wrong. They think that the reason behind choosing to align yourself with the people who start using that phrase as code for 'I want to be racist' is wrong.

That's what makes dog-whistling so dangerous: it allows people to make facially true statements ('everyone's life has value') while expressing solidarity with loser racists. And that tricks people who agree with the surface statement into supporting and defending losers.

marshwiggle

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #61 on: September 14, 2020, 08:49:07 AM »
"Dog whistle" is belittling because it implicitly accuses those to whom the "dog whistle" is allegedly directed of being prone to mindless, animal reactions.  I've noticed that it is regularly used by mainstream news outlets (I'm looking at you, "New York Times!") of any unprogressive utterance made by right-of-center pundits, officials, or candidates.  In other words, those who support such people are no more thoughtful than dogs responding to a whistle.  It speaks volumes about the contempt with which those who use the expression hold those of whom they are using it.

In a sense, it's a lot like "virtue signaling."  It's something used to shout down others.  One expression is used by those on one side of the divide, the other is used by those on the opposite side.

I think you've misunderstood this phrase. A dog whistle is a whistle, used for training, that dogs can hear but humans cannot (because it is too high pitched). So the metaphor is that a "dog whistle" is a message that that insiders will understand but outsiders will not (and so presumably not react negatively to), e.g.,., a coded racist message that fellow-racists will appreciate but will appear benign or go unnoticed by others.
However, when you start saying the quiet part out loud, it is no longer a dog whistle. I don't think we have many left at this point.

But the beauty of calling something a "dog-whistle" is that it allows you to make a perfectly non-controversial statement off-limits.  For instance, the vast majority of people would say the a human being's worth does not depend on the colour of the person's skin. So, "All lives matter" would be what most people believe. However, by calling it a "dog-whistle to white supremacists" it implies that it's something no decent person would say. Similarly, "Only biological women have uteruses" is scientifically accurate, but by calling it a "dog-whistle to transphobes" it becomes off-limits in polite society.

It's a great way to prevent a point of view (or an objective but inconvenient fact) from being stated without ever having to make an argument to suggest why it is wrong.

Good points there.

When statements become co-opted by appalling people to express appalling views, we tend to stop using them. Swastikas used to be unobjectionable symbols in Hindu and Celtic art and religion before Nazis ruined them. Likewise, 'all lives matter' is self-evidently true in its literal meaning, but the people who use it to mean 'I don't want to have to care about police brutality directed at black people' have ruined it. No one thinks 'all lives matter' as a literal proposition is wrong. They think that the reason behind choosing to align yourself with the people who start using that phrase as code for 'I want to be racist' is wrong.

That's what makes dog-whistling so dangerous: it allows people to make facially true statements ('everyone's life has value') while expressing solidarity with loser racists. And that tricks people who agree with the surface statement into supporting and defending losers.

This perfectly illustrates what I was saying.
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ergative

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #62 on: September 14, 2020, 08:55:22 AM »
Yes, I think we understand each other, but do not agree.

Cheerful

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #63 on: September 16, 2020, 07:26:58 AM »
engaged or engagement
instead of active or involvement

brixton

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #64 on: September 16, 2020, 03:42:24 PM »
talent development
creative content, or if you want to be particularly trendy, just "creative."

downer

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #65 on: September 16, 2020, 03:47:11 PM »
forsooth
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Langue_doc

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #66 on: September 16, 2020, 06:06:37 PM »
source as a verb, as in "our coffee is sourced from the wilds of [country/region] and hand-curated, in an email from the NYTimes "every Spelling Bee puzzle is hand-curated..."

dismalist

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #67 on: September 16, 2020, 06:28:07 PM »
Right, and stuff is not only sourced and curated, but also priced.

I expect it's a product of Communications types, hired by Businesses, to avoid saying: We are charging you an arm and a leg. Priced sounds so much more inclusive! :-)
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marshwiggle

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #68 on: September 17, 2020, 04:46:25 AM »
engaged or engagement
instead of active or involvement

In this case, I think of "active" and "involved" as being about action, whereas I think of "engaged" and "engagement" about interest.  So, for instance, in a lab I would say that all the students are active, but only some are engaged.

Is this just me?
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Hibush

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #69 on: September 17, 2020, 05:57:52 AM »
forsooth

Is "Forsooth" trending, or are you exclaiming archaically at the deplorable trendy terms?

downer

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #70 on: September 17, 2020, 06:07:34 AM »
forsooth

Is "Forsooth" trending, or are you exclaiming archaically at the deplorable trendy terms?

I think it is trending as much as many of the other terms being discussed.
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mahagonny

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #71 on: September 17, 2020, 06:28:21 AM »
'I'm not talking. It just don't pay.' - Mose Allison

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apl68

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #72 on: September 17, 2020, 07:20:52 AM »
engaged or engagement
instead of active or involvement

In this case, I think of "active" and "involved" as being about action, whereas I think of "engaged" and "engagement" about interest.  So, for instance, in a lab I would say that all the students are active, but only some are engaged.

Is this just me?

That's a meaningful distinction.  But it seems like in the usage of many they have slipped into being used as synonyms for "active" or "involvement."  Which could be annoying if you heard it a lot.

mahagonny

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #73 on: September 17, 2020, 08:07:18 AM »
"Dog whistle" is belittling because it implicitly accuses those to whom the "dog whistle" is allegedly directed of being prone to mindless, animal reactions.  I've noticed that it is regularly used by mainstream news outlets (I'm looking at you, "New York Times!") of any unprogressive utterance made by right-of-center pundits, officials, or candidates.  In other words, those who support such people are no more thoughtful than dogs responding to a whistle.  It speaks volumes about the contempt with which those who use the expression hold those of whom they are using it.

In a sense, it's a lot like "virtue signaling."  It's something used to shout down others.  One expression is used by those on one side of the divide, the other is used by those on the opposite side.

I think you've misunderstood this phrase. A dog whistle is a whistle, used for training, that dogs can hear but humans cannot (because it is too high pitched). So the metaphor is that a "dog whistle" is a message that that insiders will understand but outsiders will not (and so presumably not react negatively to), e.g.,., a coded racist message that fellow-racists will appreciate but will appear benign or go unnoticed by others.
However, when you start saying the quiet part out loud, it is no longer a dog whistle. I don't think we have many left at this point.

But the beauty of calling something a "dog-whistle" is that it allows you to make a perfectly non-controversial statement off-limits.  For instance, the vast majority of people would say the a human being's worth does not depend on the colour of the person's skin. So, "All lives matter" would be what most people believe. However, by calling it a "dog-whistle to white supremacists" it implies that it's something no decent person would say. Similarly, "Only biological women have uteruses" is scientifically accurate, but by calling it a "dog-whistle to transphobes" it becomes off-limits in polite society.

It's a great way to prevent a point of view (or an objective but inconvenient fact) from being stated without ever having to make an argument to suggest why it is wrong.

Good points there.

When statements become co-opted by appalling people to express appalling views, we tend to stop using them. Swastikas used to be unobjectionable symbols in Hindu and Celtic art and religion before Nazis ruined them. Likewise, 'all lives matter' is self-evidently true in its literal meaning, but the people who use it to mean 'I don't want to have to care about police brutality directed at black people' have ruined it. No one thinks 'all lives matter' as a literal proposition is wrong. They think that the reason behind choosing to align yourself with the people who start using that phrase as code for 'I want to be racist' is wrong.

That's what makes dog-whistling so dangerous: it allows people to make facially true statements ('everyone's life has value') while expressing solidarity with loser racists. And that tricks people who agree with the surface statement into supporting and defending losers.

This perfectly illustrates what I was saying.

What some are refusing to recognize (or not sufficiently informed to) is that the statement 'all lives matter' is prompted by the statement 'black lives matter' as understood to refer to fatal encounters with police.  We know the names George Floyd, Trayvon Martin, Breonna Taylor et al but we do not know the the names of whites shot and killed by police in recent months, years. So, prompting someone to say something and then declaring it dog whistling is...well, not fair.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2020, 08:21:24 AM by mahagonny »
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ciao_yall

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Re: Trendy Words I Do Not Like
« Reply #74 on: September 17, 2020, 08:10:40 AM »
"utilize"

Maybe it's not trendy, but it's one of those multi-syllabic words that seems overused. Why not just "use" or "apply?"