Saturday, April 14, 2012

The Power of Words

I don't have a facebook account, but I do read the people that Jason follows. He has such a wonderful group of artists and thinkers that I enjoy peeking in on their conversations.

One of his friends (on facebook and in real life) posted a cartoon the other day. It was a spoof on all the "wars" going on in America.

The War on Christmas.

The War on Job Creators.

The War on Religion.

The War on Freedom.

And off to the side, I saw this comment and it made my heart almost stop.

I don't know this person, but I am going to reprint his words here because I feel they need to shared:

"Dustin Whited As I sit here watching a group of family and friends plant American flags alongside the highway, in preparation for the funeral of a fallen soldier, I'm inclined to remind people what real WAR is, and to take care when throwing the word around. There's a dead kid coming home in a casket from a real war tomorrow. The shame is that sentence is applicable on most any given day."

I am humbled and shamed and will refrain from using the word "war" to describe political differences.


Anonymous said...

I understand your concern about the use of the word "war." And while I agree that we throw the word around all too easily as we do so many others.
There are casualties in both the war on drugs and the war on women. Working as a hospital chaplain, I encountered many and helped families deal with the losses.
Thank you for your willingness to put yourself on the line.

JanetLee said...

Jacquie - thanks for stopping by!

As a nurse who works in the hospital setting, I am well aware of the "casualties" of drug abuse and poverty.

I will still no longer call it a "war", I will instead say that "current policies are negatively impacting".

The current state government administration's policy of defunding rural mental health centers is negatively impacting families.

Not as snappy as "there is war on the mentally ill", but much more conducive to dialogue, I hope.

Unknown said...

JanetLee, I appreciate your search for appropriate language, but when I moved to be with my husband I took a less demanding job in an accounting office. We talk about negative impact all the time related to the bottom line. War may be the wrong word and you have pointed that out very well, but negative impact is not strong enough for me. There has to be a word that has an emtional impact but doesn't diminish the victims of war.

Jenny Woolf said...

Yes sometimes a word becomes a cliche and we forget its true meaning.

Jenny Woolf said...

Yes sometimes a word becomes a cliche and we forget its true meaning.

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