Friday, January 16, 2015

Torturing the language

……… in the name of political correctness.

So this morning a couple of thugs have taken some hostages somewhere in France.  The media has jumped all over that because France is the topic du jour.  Two weeks ago a hostage taking in Montreal wouldn’t have made the national news, let alone one in far away France.  The big debate on the TV this morning is whether this latest hostage taking is “terrorism” or just a regular garden variety kidnapping.  I expect it is terrifying enough for the victims, no matter whether their captors worship Allah or God or pink lizards.

CrescentStarWhat’s bugging me this morning is the phraseology we use to describe these incidents.  What we’re talking about of course is Islamic extremism or Muslim terrorists.  Everybody knows that.  “Terrorism” has become code for Islamic extremism.  Despite that we could never admit that there may be a fundamental problem with Islam, that would be xenophobic or racist.  I heard an argument the other day where one person opined that the violent incidents we are seeing are caused by a few bad apples to which his opponent responded that, given the number of bad apples we are seeing, perhaps there is something rotten in the orchard.

We don’t have to live in fear.  We REALLY don’t have to live in fear out here in Buchanan but as a global society we don’t have to live in fear either.  We do have to name the threat and so far I see absolutely no willingness to do that. 

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