Your current web browser is outdated. For best viewing experience, please consider upgrading to the latest version.

Contact

Send a question or comment using the form below. This message may be routed through support staff.

Email Article

ERROR
Main Error Mesage Here
More detailed message would go here to provide context for the user and how to proceed
ERROR
Main Error Mesage Here
More detailed message would go here to provide context for the user and how to proceed
search DONATE
Close Nav

Gender-Neutral Language Is More Than a Word Game

back to top
commentary

Gender-Neutral Language Is More Than a Word Game

The Wall Street Journal January 6, 2021
OtherCulture & Society

Democratic speech police demand not only tolerance but endorsement of the progressive agenda.

In his 1946 essay, “Politics and the English Language,” George Orwell wrote that political language “consist largely of euphemism, question-begging and sheer cloudy vagueness.” The description fits Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s new House rules on gender-neutral speech to a tee.

On Monday, the Democratic-controlled lower chamber voted along party lines to approve new official language guidelines. Words such as “himself” and “herself” are to be replaced by “themself.” Out with “father,” “mother,” “son,” “daughter,” “brother,” “sister,” “uncle,” “aunt” and other familial terms, and in with “parent,” “child,” “sibling” and so forth. An incensed Kevin McCarthy, the Republican minority leader, tweeted that the changes “are stupid,” which is true but incomplete.

Mrs. Pelosi is obviously attempting to placate the progressives in her caucus, however it’s also another example of how the political left today demands not only tolerance but endorsement. You can’t disagree respectfully, let alone agree not to agree. It’s bad enough when our colleges and universities enforce what amount to speech codes, or indulge efforts to shield students from dissenting viewpoints. Now we have lawmakers in Washington offering a kind of a federal imprimatur on limiting free expression.

Continue reading the entire piece here at The Wall Street Journal (paywall)

______________________

Jason L. Riley is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, a columnist at The Wall Street Journal, and a Fox News commentator. Follow him on Twitter here.

Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Saved!
Close