Doublethink

You are killing the word “racist”. Just like you killed “fascist.”  You see, at one time, “fascist” had a definition.  It was a “third way” goverment that promised economic prosperity through the intense government regulation of corporations and industry.  (Sound familiar?)

It was actually considered a really groovy thing by a lot of political thinkers, who called themselves “progressives”.  They pretty much meant the same thing, like “left” and “liberal” do now.  Then, something happened.  You know, the whole “Mussolini and Hitler, sitting in a tree” thing.  And all of the sudden, “fascist” went out of style.  (Progressive stuck around, because it is what FDR called himself.  Never mind that before the war he wrote congratulatory letters to Mussolini about how his brilliant system turned Italy around and implemented the same ideas here.)

But the word “fascist” stuck around.  Progressives just threw it out whenever they caught someone doing something that was a lot like what they did but that they didn’t like.  If they liked you, you were a “progressive”.  If they didn’t like you, you were a “fascist”.

Eventually, the word “fascist” ended up being completely divorced from Mussolini’s socioeconomic system, and now means “something that the epithet thrower doesn’t like.”

If you keep doing that with racist — which is what this is, since people made the exact same photoshops of Bush — then racist will cease to have any meaning other than “poopyhead.”  Unless you think that the real racists are all gone and we don’t need a way to identify them anymore, then that’s a bad thing.

3 Comments

  1. […] Racist is dead. Long live racist. […]

  2. MattJ says:

    Along those same lines, “liberal” used to mean “for the higher classes”, as in “liberal arts” were the arts for the aristocracy to be learning because they were better than the common man.

    Oh, wait, never mind. Liberal still means that.