The United Nations has begun working towards creating a “more equal world.”
And it does so in the most arbitrary way possible: stop people from saying “husband/wife” and “boyfriend/girlfriend”.
What you say matters.
Help create a more equal world by using gender-neutral language if you're unsure about someone's gender or are referring to a group. https://t.co/QQRFPY4VRn #GenerationEquality via@UN_Women pic.twitter.com/koxoAZZuxq
— United Nations (@UN) May 18, 2020
“What you say matters. Help create a more equal world by using gender-neutral language if you’re unsure about someone’s gender or are referring to a group,” states the tweet.
People on Twitter, of course, weren’t happy.
Stop trying to control people’s language. It’s creepy and unnecessary.
— Lucy Harris (@Lugey6) May 18, 2020
Are we allowed to say son or daughter or will my spouse and I get a visit from a police officer?
— Wes Butler ? (@WButler77) May 18, 2020
The global bureaucratic body with no actual authority, as it has become apparent in conflicts all around the world is trying to fight quite insignificant fights, hoping to score a victory.
In addition, some of the proposals are just simply absurd.
This can’t have been written by a native English speaker.
Landlord, for instance, is self-explanatory.
“Jim is my landlord.”
“Jim is my owner.” -What?
“Jim is the owner of my house.” -What?
“Jim is the owner of the house in which I live.” -Oh, he’s your landlord!
— Rorate Caeli (@RorateCaeli) May 18, 2020
Also, using “gender neutral” language doesn’t stop the UN from specifically tweeting “@UN_Women” and the website being called unwomen.org.
— The Red-Headed Libertarian ™ (@TRHLofficial) May 18, 2020
Some even questioned whether the UN would also suggest that any language around the world that incorporates grammatical should be entirely remade, in an exercise in futility.
Those who have read 1984, George Orwell’s novel, written back in 1949, might recall “Newspeak.”
For those who don’t recall it, Newspeak is the language of Oceania, a totalitarian superstate, in which the novel is set.
In “The Principles of Newspeak”, the appendix to the novel, Orwell explains that Newspeak follows most of the rules of English grammar, yet is a language characterised by a continually diminishing vocabulary; complete thoughts reduced to simple terms of simplistic meaning.
To meet the ideological requirements of English Socialism in Oceania, the ruling Party created Newspeak, a controlled language of simplified grammar and restricted vocabulary, meant to limit the freedom of thought—personal identity, self-expression, free will—that threatens the ideology of the régime of Big Brother and the Party, who have criminalized such concepts into thoughtcrime as contradictions of Ingsoc orthodoxy.
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