The Dangers Of Buzzwords

The Dangers Of Buzzwords

Welcome to the new age of using words that you don't know the meanings of in debates.
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If you are vocal about your political views, chances are you have gotten yourself into a debate or two. These debates can be productive and enlightening for both sides of the argument. Upon asking anyone who makes their passion for politics known about their past debates, it is almost guaranteed that they have learned something from these conversations, no matter how minor. As important as these dialogues are in respect to progress and understanding, they can also become pointless once a certain group of linguistic monsters makes an appearance. This group is comprised of the native language of all people who seem to fail miserably at the art of political conversation: buzzwords.

According to Dictionary.com, a buzzword is "a word or phrase, often sounding authoritative or technical, that is a vogue term in a particular profession, the field of study, popular culture, etc.". Nearly everyone encounters buzzwords on a daily basis, whether it be on the news, on social media, or even in conversation with friends and colleagues. You know the words: racist, sexist, homophobic, fascist, xenophobic, etc;. The list seems to grow as social justice becomes more and more of a household name.

This frivolous utilization of buzzwords comes at a severe cost. The more these words are thrown around, the less merit they maintain. Feminists often times like to deem those that disagree with their movement as sexists or misogynists. Same goes for people who point out the faults with Black Lives Matter, they are told time and time again that they are racist. If you favor the travel ban? You're a xenophobic islamophobe.

So, what happens when these words are continually used in this way? They lose their punch. These words are no longer a shocking accusation. These words are no longer a rarity. They've become nothing more than a preamble to any points that a progressive will try to make. Being called a buzzword is currently nothing more than a schoolyard insult because it holds just as much merit as being made fun of during a game of grade-school tag.

The problem with this is that it makes it worlds more difficult to actually distinguish what is truly racist, sexist or anything of the like. When everything that strays from the social justice narrative is deemed as fitting the definition of these buzzwords, the truly problematic content and ideas are muffled by everyday people simply expressing their thoughts.

Not only are these words carelessly spoken, but their meanings are being changed to fit progressive narrative. Racism is no longer a prejudice against someone based on their race, it is considered systemic and something that you can never experience if you are white because you are not "marginalized". Just as fascism is no longer radical authoritarianism, instead it is currently a character trait of those that disagree with liberalism. These alternate meanings are, of course, not the actual definitions of these words. They are simply a rite of passage for liberals to dole out consequences, but never take them on themselves.

As these flippant insults continue to be thrown around by the left, unprompted harassment is distributed in droves as well. For example, members of the Berkeley College Republicans reported being victims of theft of private information and threats against their members after inviting a conservative speaker, Milo Yiannopoulos to speak on campus. Yiannopoulos's lecture was shut down beforehand by riots organized by liberal students.

In more recent news, CNN was accused of blackmailing a Reddit user for posting a gif that was later re-posted by Donald Trump on his Twitter. Seemingly innocent actions by those who denounce liberalism are continually given extreme consequences for no other reason than that their actions somehow offend the left.

The fact that these two instances do not even scrape the surface of the left's attempts to silence differing opinions is most definitely a cause for concern. Unfair accusations and harassment have become a norm for the majority of people who do not agree with every point of the liberal community, especially on social media platforms. This poses a massive issue for anyone who believes in the importance of free speech. When expressing your political opinion, unless it incites violence, you should not have to fear for your job, future education or reputation in doing so. That is not to say that criticism of opinion should not be tolerated as it is one of the most important things in political dialogue, however, there is a tremendous difference between critique and harassment.

There is no shame in differing opinion. That's what makes the world of politics such an interesting and passionate one for so many Americans. Although, there is shame in silencing other's opinions, especially without a proper argument. It is not fascist, racist, sexist or anything of the sort to stand for what you believe is best for your country. In the apex of a war against conflicting ideas, it is imperative to remember that unwarranted attacks will never equate to statistics and buzzwords will never be fact.





Cover Image Credit: Flickr

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This Is How Your Same-Sex Marriage Affects Me As A Catholic Woman

I hear you over there, Bible Bob.
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It won't.

Wait, what?

I promise you did read that right. Not what you were expecting me to say, right? Who another person decides to marry will never in any way affect my own marriage whatsoever. Unless they try to marry the person that I want to, then we might have a few problems.

As a kid, I was raised, baptized, and confirmed into an old school Irish Catholic church in the middle of a small, midwestern town.

Not exactly a place that most people would consider to be very liberal or open-minded. Despite this I was taught to love and accept others as a child, to not cast judgment because the only person fit to judge was God. I learned this from my Grandpa, a man whose love of others was only rivaled by his love of sweets and spoiling his grandkids.

While I learned this at an early age, not everyone else in my hometown — or even within my own church — seemed to get the memo. When same-sex marriage was finally legalized country-wide, I cried tears of joy for some of my closest friends who happen to be members of the LGBTQ community.

I was happy while others I knew were disgusted and even enraged.

"That's not what it says in the bible! Marriage is between a man and a woman!"

"God made Adam and Eve for a reason! Man shall not lie with another man as he would a woman!"

"Homosexuality is a sin! It's bad enough that they're all going to hell, now we're letting them marry?"

Alright, Bible Bob, we get it, you don't agree with same-sex relationships. Honestly, that's not the issue. One of our civil liberties as United States citizens is the freedom of religion. If you believe your religion doesn't support homosexuality that's OK.

What isn't OK is thinking that your religious beliefs should dictate others lives.

What isn't OK is using your religion or your beliefs to take away rights from those who chose to live their life differently than you.

Some members of my church are still convinced that their marriage now means less because people are free to marry whoever they want to. Honestly, I wish I was kidding. Tell me again, Brenda how exactly do Steve and Jason's marriage affect yours and Tom's?

It doesn't. Really, it doesn't affect you at all.

Unless Tom suddenly starts having an affair with Steve their marriage has zero effect on you. You never know Brenda, you and Jason might become best friends by the end of the divorce. (And in that case, Brenda and Tom both need to go to church considering the bible also teaches against adultery and divorce.)

I'll say it one more time for the people in the back: same-sex marriage does not affect you even if you or your religion does not support it. If you don't agree with same-sex marriage then do not marry someone of the same sex. Really, it's a simple concept.

It amazes me that I still actually have to discuss this with some people in 2017. And it amazes me that people use God as a reason to hinder the lives of others.

As a proud young Catholic woman, I wholeheartedly support the LGBTQ community with my entire being.

My God taught me to not hold hate so close to my heart. He told me not to judge and to accept others with open arms. My God taught me to love and I hope yours teaches you the same.

Disclaimer - This article in no way is meant to be an insult to the Bible or religion or the LGBTQ community.

Cover Image Credit: Sushiesque / Flickr

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All Good Things Are Wild And Free, Right?

Free your soul and be happy.
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The word 'free' can allude to many things. My mom always says that nothing is ever free. But what about your soul? Is it free? Does everyone have a free soul? I think that everyone has the potential to have a free soul but whether or not they decide to live that lifestyle is up to them.

Until recently, I never thought of myself as a free spirit, but I am. Although I didn’t begin with a free soul, I evolved into one. Life throws you trials and tribulations and it's meant for you to grow from these obstacles. And I have.

People always question me about my careless attitude. Careless meaning that I don’t care what others think. I never actually answer the question, but here’s the answer: once you figure out that you can’t make everyone happy by the decisions you make and start doing the things that make you happy is when you become free from others.

The phrase “damned if you, damned if you don’t” applies here perfectly. People will find something wrong with you and your life decisions no matter what you decide. There’s no way to make everyone happy, it's just not possible.

I don’t wake up in the mornings to please anyone but myself. To have a free soul you must do the things that make you and you alone happy.

Free souls are happy souls. Finding inner happiness takes time. It takes being at rock bottom to find your own happiness. Being happy within means that you don’t have to rely on anyone to be happy, and that’s how it should be.

When you give other people the privilege of holding the key to your happiness chances are they’ll fail you. Other people can contribute to your overall happiness but always remember who you are and put your happiness first because if you’re not happy with yourself then how do you expect to keep someone else happy?

Do you, boo. It’s so cheesy, I know, but it’s how to keep you and your soul free from others control. Live your life and live it like there’s no tomorrow. Don’t live your days full of worry, regret, and unhappiness. Do the things that are necessary for you to be happy, who cares what other people think. If you’re unhappy and they’re happy, how is this benefitting you? It’s not.

Be selfish. Be selfish with your happiness and your freedom.

You don’t owe anything to anyone. Once you figure out that your own happiness should come first that’s when you begin to be free. And just a hint, the people that you’re trying so hard to please and make happy, don’t care about your happiness. So why should you care about theirs?

If you want to be free, then do you. Do the things that make you happy, stop caring about what others think. Find that inner happiness that is guaranteed every day, because it’s your own.

Cover Image Credit: Kallee Gambrel

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