If you’ve ever read the book 1984 by George Orwell, you have a pretty good idea of what a society might look like when the citizens can’t actually trust their sources of information. In the book, the government controlled all data, and simply changed the definitions of words to reflect the meaning they wanted them to have.
If you’re thinking of “fake news,” you’re not alone. But in 2017’s America, it’s not just the news media that’s creating falsehoods. Now, even our dictionaries are changing the definitions of words to play into politics. Case in point. Recently, the New York Times wrote an article about how the Donald Trump administration was investigating whether they is discrimination in college admissions… against whites:
Trump administration wants to investigate colleges for discriminating against white applicants, document suggests https://t.co/w5xnB03XYF
— The New York Times (@nytimes) August 2, 2017
In response, Dictionary.com tweeted:
#AffirmativeAction = encouragement of representation of women & minorities
— Dictionary.com (@Dictionarycom) August 2, 2017
So now, the liberal news organizations are being “backed up” by supposedly bias-free research tools? Cheeky and attention-getting? Yes. But, is that what we want our sources of data to be doing? Definitely not.
https://t.co/icLyb05u5BIs there anything more literally Orwellian than dictionary spokesmen wading into political debates?
— Mark Hemingway (@Heminator) August 2, 2017
No. Actually, this is the definition of “Orwellian,” and it is very disturbing that our society is welcoming this as some sort of snarky coolness. Instead, it’s a shame that even our movies, our television shows, our sports, and now even our dictionaries are affected by political correctness. Is anything in America immune to this sort of political angling?
According to the Daily Caller, this isn’t the first time this organization has decided to rudely wade into hot debates:
Dictionary.com received criticism in 2014 for example sentences for the word “homeschool.”
“If you want to keep your kids from reality and turn them into mindless automaton copies of yourself, homeschool them, said one example. “If she can’t find anyone willing to validate her helicopter parenting, she’ll homeschool,” suggested another.
Nice. Well, if you’re wondering if there’s any actually unbiased place on the internet, now ya know.