Doubling Down on Doublespeak

In 2013, the Associated Press expunged the term "illegal immigrant" from its Stylebook. The term "illegal alien" had been clandestinely expunged years earlier. (See the article Associated Press adopts Orwellian doublespeak - drops "illegal immigrant".)

In a fury of leftist political correctness, the overlord of doublespeak is again dictating what we read and how we should think.

In the January 12, 2017 Clarion Project article 'Islamist,' 'Terrorist' Now Forbidden Words, Meira Svirsky reports that even more terms are off limits to journalists and readers alike:

In a stunning display of “progressive” political correctness, the Associated Press announced that, among other words and expressions, “Islamist” and “terrorist” are no longer acceptable.

Instead, ‘Islamist’ is to be dropped altogether and the perpetrators of Islamist terrorist attacks are to called “militants,” “attackers” or “lone wolves.”

The AP wields power in the journalist world, directing the lexicon not only of its own reporters but the majority of English-language journalists worldwide through its iconic stylebook. Reporters from college newspapers to international media outlets rely on the AP to set the standards of language used in the media.

Even if a journalist doesn’t want to use AP style, “If you don’t write it this way and you submit an article to a mainstream publication, the editors will change your words,” says Rachel Alexander, a contributor to The Hill writing on the changes.

The article reports that the AP has doubled down on their draconian implementation of doublespeak:

Along with the changes to the word Islamist and terrorist, the AP also decided the words “migrant” or “refugee” must no longer be used; rather the appropriate words are now “people struggling to enter Europe.” Similarly, AP says “pro-life” should be called “anti-abortion.”  “Illegal immigrant” and “undocumented” may also not be used anymore (AP had already forbidden the use of “illegals” and “alien”).

As Svirsky observes,

Doublespeak is language that deliberately distorts or even reverses the meaning of words. For example, when critics of radical Islam expose this extremism for what is it, their critics call them “Islamophobes;” when those who call themselves “social justice warriors” campaigning for tolerance exhibit just the opposite (i.e., intolerance) by shutting down any conversation with which they don’t agree; when others force their religious beliefs (i.e., blasphemy laws) upon others in the name of religion (as in Canada’s new motion against criticism of Islam); or when perpetrators of crimes frame themselves as victims.

Doublespeak often leads to doublethink, as George Orwell writes in his seminal novel Nineteen Eight-Four: “To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient.” In the novel, people explicitly learn doublethink due to peer pressure and a desire to fit in or gain status with in the “Party.”

It's pretty clear that the leftist AP not only wants to control what we read - they want to control the political landscape and how readers perceive reality. 

It should be no surprise that mainstream Americans place little trust in the biased mainstream media.



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Media Bias, Censorship, and Political Correctness Run Amuck