America, we have a problem and it isn’t just President Obama. We have at least two generations of Americas who are not educated enough to see that his “hope and change” gimmick is destroying the country. They do not see the connection between his policies and the destruction they are causing. The fact is these people are not “uneducated” but have been beaten down by a system controlled by the left, so they cannot see the truth.
One of the issues that I believe to be causing this is the radical way in which our education system has redefined, or has failed to properly define the words we use every day. This is important because a failure to understand the root meaning of language causes us to lose touch with history, and we all know what happens then. Etymology is the study on the history of words, their meanings and how those meanings change over time. It is more than making sure your 5th grader studies their vocabulary and memorizes the definitions of the words they study for a spelling test. Etymology puts into perspective the historical roots of the word, how it was applied and what it meant to a society. Looking at it from that perspective gives us a little understanding on the importance of this lost discipline and the consequences of failing to teach us how the definitions of words change. Failing to keep in mind the root of the word means that the changing definition may in fact allow a society to change with it. I was not taught about etymology in my five years of higher education. In fact I was almost forced to accept definitions of words that just did not seem right to me and these definitions were not up for debate, and the college was “supposedly” liberal. I will explain that in a bit.
I am going to use an example that is very relevant for today because of the drastic impact its radical redefinition has had on our society. The word “racism” is wreaking havoc within our nation today and I think some perspective needs to be brought to bear on this situation.
Racism: A belief that that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race; allowing discriminatory practices to develop from such beliefs.
That’s a pretty clear cut definition and if it were applied today in this context racism would fall squarely on those who are calling themselves liberal. This is because of the collective way they view everything. We all know that today’s liberals view minorities as all being the “same” and having the same thought process, wanting to have the same things, they should all believe that they are victims of “White America” ect. ect. Well according to the above definition that makes today’s liberals the racist. What about discriminatory practices? Well, what about the belief that today liberals have about minorities needing special protection and lower standards with programs like affirmative action, or special hate crime legislation? I think Fredrick Douglas was pretty adamant black people being treated as equals, not as people needing special rights. Lower standards resulting from affirmative action laws means they don’t have to try as hard and the quota system mean universities and places of employment do not hire the best qualified candidate, which in fact could be a minority, but instead feel pressured to fill the quota. This destroys incentive and develops an entitlement mentality. Believing that minorities are not as capable is not discriminatory? It should also be noted that historically the word racism carried with it an implication of a deeply rooted sense of hatred for another race which led to violence and suffering.
Today’s definition of racism is vastly different and I believe it has been changed in an attempt to redirect people’s attention away from the real racists. The sociologists and social scientists are responsible for this redefinition. Today, society itself is racist because everything that the “White majority” does, knowingly or not contributes to the systematic oppression of minorities, even if they do not feel like they are oppressed. I was taught in a college classroom at a prestigious university that a successful black woman should reexamine her life and look at herself from the lens of being an “oppressed minority” in an effort to alleviate depression. (This was an example of an actual case study in a text book) I think we all see examples of this. Every day we see some highly paid news anchor who is obviously more concerned about their social status and career than the effects their traitorous actions have on society call someone a racist for disagreeing with a liberal.
The effects of redefining the word in question are enormous on different levels. On one hand we actually have people coming into the system believing that our society is racist and everything about it needs to change. People being beat down with “white privilege” believe that they shouldn’t raise their voice in opposition to anything because it would be racist. Also, the historical implications of the implied hatred in the word are gone from its definition, but that doesn’t mean hatred isn’t real with racism. In fact you could argue it has done a complete 180 and that hatred is coming from another group of people because of the new definition.
What words could we use to apply a little etymology and perhaps redefine the redefinition to its original meaning? How about the words that have society the most divided it has ever been, liberal and conservative? The word liberal comes from the word liberate and has its historical origins based on the movements of freeing people from the rule of absolute monarchs, or tyrannical dictatorships. Our founding fathers were the enlightened liberals of the time as they intended to create a society based on the idea of using free thinking and logic as a means of pursuing truth and liberty. That is in fact the definition of the word “liberal.”
“A free way of thinking and acting in public life: opposition to absolutes and centralization of authority.”
This definition provides a great example of the importance of etymology. The historical context of the word absolutes is political. Liberalism in its original definition sought to free the minds of men from the “absolute rule” of monarchs. Such is the meaning of “centralization of power.” The word absolute has taken on a new context as well. Liberals avoid any absolute pertaining to truth. The founding fathers were clear in their belief in Christ. Christ is absolute. Absolutism is essential in the realms of spirituality and morality. Avoiding absolutism in the present day context has led to the creation of moral relativism. Going with this definition you may begin to see why I refer to liberals as “today’s liberals.” They have become more like the monarchs that liberal philosophies have sought to free themselves from. In their attempts to eliminate truth and support growing government power they have become the absolutist, the centralized power if you will, as there is no room for disagreeing with them.
What about the word conservative? We all know that conserve means to maintain and preserve. Conservatives actually seek to preserve the “liberal” traditions of Americas founding fathers, based on the original definition of liberal. (Throw that to a college professor some day, trust me they will love you for it.) Today’s liberals have become the conservative as they are the ones seeking to maintain the status quo of growing government power and an ever expanding welfare state.
The implications of not teaching the historical context of language are potentially dangerous. The reason I wanted to write this article is because I have become obsessed with trying to do what I was taught to do. You see in college I was taught about the great Saul Alinsky and the wonderful things he did as a community organizer. (Community Organizer has a different definition as well, communist agitator, but I will let you research that.) The thing is they really were not honest about Saul Alinsky and even though I already knew who he was and what he stood for; I was shocked that my college was teaching this, and lying about him no less. Having been taught that I was a “social change agent,” I set out to affect social change. The difference between me and the other people I went to school with was I could define the “social change” I was seeking. So I want to apply a little Alinsky myself and use their rules against them. In this case they want to redefine words so I want to show how the original definition of words makes them who they claim we are. This is why they redefine words and fail to teach etymology in the first place.