Words And Thoughts Are Like A Blank Page

February 17, 2018


Recently Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau corrected a woman at a town hall meeting in Nanaimo, B.C. Trudeau advised the woman to use the term “people-kind” instead of “mankind.” OK, it’s not the rule-of-law in Canada or anywhere else on the planet, as far as I know. And that leads to the next question. How far are world leaders and other representatives going with this? Who should dictate this colossal change of speech? When speech changes, thought changes as well. I’m not trying to imply that everyone is gullible enough to submit to other people's reality; however, there are enough vulnerable people in the world who trust every word spoken by “authority figures.” Things can easily turn dangerous for society as a whole when the masses blindly follow without questioning and no critical thinking.

I found an interesting article titled “The Impact of Political Correctness on Language Change.” There are 18 points laid out in the article; however, I am only going to reference a few. If you want to read the entire article just click on the link. Keep in mind, I’m not referencing the article because I agree with everything in the commentary, but as I wrote; I found it interesting. For example, the article says: “Orwell, in “Politics and the English Language” shows how clichés undermine expression through misleading us: we are using someone else’s words, not expressing ourselves; if this is the case, getting rid of politically incorrect or otherwise harmful expressions, will enable us to avoid thinking racist, sexist or otherwise harmful thoughts.” In my view, this sounds more like mind-control. Someone can still “act out” a thought without saying it. Change must come from within not via regulations from those who feel they have the right to “tell people how to think.” A person may not call a person fat or say the "N" word but may still think of the word and believe the connotations attached to it. People are not machines and have feelings. There’s no way to control thoughts without forcing people to suppress them except maybe with drugs. This is why Artificial Intelligence has limitations. These machines are programmed to think a certain way, most likely dependent upon certain algorithms associated with the program installed in them. We are not machines.   

Another part of the article states: “Guy Deutscher supports Roman Jakobson in arguing that if we don’t have a word for an idea, the concept is harder to deal with, for example “schadenfreude” in German: in English we can express this idea, however not as easily, showing that changing our language can affect how we think.” This quote is obvious if you speak another language. I speak German though my mother tongue is English. In order to speak German I have to change my thought process. It gets tricky because with German verbs have come at the end of a sentence. These are called modal verbs, similar to ‘helping verbs.’ For example, in English you would say “Do we have to help him with his move again.” In German you would say, “Müssen wir ihm mit seinem Umzug nochmal helfen?” If you translate the German words to English exactly as they are, they would read “must we him with his moving again help?” It’s much like a brain teaser and definitely takes a change of thought to speak the language properly and I still don’t speak it perfectly! But the freedom of thought remains regardless of the language we speak. 

Facebook has introduced 71 gender options. The article "Facebooks' 71 Gender Options Come to UK Users" states that "users can choose a different gender option from the previous male and female choices by selecting 'custom' in the gender tab of their profiles. In addition, people who select a custom gender will now have the ability to choose the pronoun they’d like to be referred to publicly — male (he/his), female (she/her) or neutral (they/their).” It all sounds a bit confusing, to be honest. As an individual with free thought, you must decide whether you want to go along with the new psychological distractions thrown upon us.

Tinder rolled out 37 new gender identity options. The change seems to be based on trans users issues in UK, US, and Canada. The article states "the move follows criticism of the app for being transphobic by only offering male and female options for users." So, where are we going with this? Language modification appears to be more about personal identities, than finding entirely unheard of terms in the English language for words like tree or pumpernickel for example.

The technological age has opened up many doors. It’s extended our reach cross borders and gave us access to an infinite world of ideas. Unfortunately, this means various ideologies as well. Now, more than ever, we must be diligent of not only our thoughts and words but our purpose in life. In Sanskrit there is no word for the individual or “I.” The meaning of Sanskrit is ‘the perfected language.’ The purpose of language is to understand one another to express ourselves and inspire others. But this requires free thought. Without it, we no longer grow, we wither and die. "Our thoughts are our own" discern your good thoughts from the asinine ones and use them wisely as you will go wherever you allow your thought to take you.






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