Sunday, 23 October 2011
We all use them, and most likely we’ve all heard them. Alas, what is a label? Are labels inherently good or bad? Is there such thing as a “bad” label? We have labels for Planes, Trains and Automobiles [a 1987 American comedy film released by Paramount Pictures, amongst other things]. We have labels for clothing and food too. There are safety labels, warning labels, cautionary labels, informative labels, and labels that come in all sorts of shapes, sizes and colours. Are they, any of them, good simply because they are a “label”? Could some label use be bad, though?
What about a situation wherein someone is particularly at risk for anaphylactic shock (has allergies)? What if food packaging “labels” advise the would-be consumer that the food product for which they are about to devour, contains an ingredient that otherwise could be fatal? Surely “labels” are indeed acceptable in these situations?
Are all labels good then? What about labels used in jest, such as:
The label CHEAP, as in - “The Scott’s, they sure are cheap!” or
The label HOT-HEADED, as in - “The German’s, they sure are hot-headed.” Or
The label SOCIALISTS, as in - “Those Canadian’s, they’re a bunch of Socialists, all of them.”
Overgeneralizations labels of this nature seldom do anyone or anything, any real justice.
What about misuse of a “label”? LibProg’s belly-ache about it all the time. For example, it has been said that overuse of a label such as Nazi or Holocaust, whether the subject has have ever had anything to do with Nazi’s or not, (or even specifically hating Jews for that matter) diminishes the validity and true meaning of the words Nazi and Holocaust. “You diminish the memory and meaning of the Holocaust…” according to “Democratic Underground.com” [http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=102x4712486], with stories from “The Guardian” [http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2011/jan/27/rabbis-murdoch-fox-glenn-beck-holocaust] and “The Washington Post” [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/26/AR2011012607540.html?hpid=topnews]
So how is it that it’s okay for the left-wing media (and its followers), or anyone for that matter, to caution us against overuse of a terms / labels such as Nazi and Holocaust, whilst simultaneously typecasting many a folk with labels like “Islamaphobe(s)”, “Homophobe” or “Homophobic” etc? Perhaps before we delve into this question, it would be prudent to do as a very good friend of mine did recently, and look-up and then apply bonā fidē accepted definitions; first for the word, “phobia” and then also the words “phobe” and “phobic”. According to:
Merriam-Webster.com “an exaggerated usually inexplicable and illogical fear of a particular object, class of objects, or situation” and to
a persistent, irrational fear of a specific object, activity, or situation that leads to a compelling desire to avoid it.”
How about the words “phobe”, and / or “phobic” again dictionary.reference.com says phobe means “a combining form used to form personal nouns corresponding to nouns ending in -phobia” and phobic is:
a person suffering from a phobia.”
Alright, the first thing we should notice is that both Merriam-Webster and Dictionary.com begin their respective definitions with “inexplicable”, “illogical” and “irrational” fear. Ergo without boring you with still more Dictionary definitions, let me just say that “inexplicable, illogical and irrational” are synonymous with – incomprehensible, unreasonable and ridiculous. But, please do not take my word for it, grab a handy Thesaurus and look it up for yourself. Suffice it to say, to call someone “________________phobe” or “________________phobic” is effectively to say that said person has a ridiculous fear of “________________”.
Next, let us explore what the ridiculous fear of is, by definition:
First: a ridiculous fear of a specific object
Second: a ridiculous fear of an activity
Third: a ridiculous fear of a situation
Neither homosexuality nor Islam meet any one of the three above noted definitions, ergo it is ridiculous to label someone as being irrationally afraid of either, because neither is (in and of itself): a specific object, an activity or a situation. Having reviewed the accepted definitions of the suffixes phobia, phobe and phobic, it is now time to refer back to my original question.
“So how is it that it’s okay for the left-wing media (and its followers), or anyone for that matter, to caution us against overuse of a terms / labels such as Nazi and Holocaust, whilst simultaneously typecasting many a folk with labels like “Islamaphobe(s)”, “Homophobe” or “Homophobic” etc?”
In other words:
One, does it make sense for someone to typecast anybody as “Islamaphobe(s)”, “Homophobe” or “Homophobic” etc?
Two, does the use of these suffixes, in this context, support the idea of “acceptable use”?
And three, does the typical LibProg practice, as noted above, speaking out against the overuse of terms such as Nazi and Holocaust, whilst displaying out-of-control verbal-diarrhoea by using labels such as Islamaphobe(s), Homophobe or Homophobic etc., make any sense or otherwise seem fair or reasonable?
Please allow me to begin with number three, the LibProg practice noted above, of applying labels here, yet arguing against use of labels there, is nothing short of “Duplicity of Standards”, and that folks is the subject of a future Blog. This leaves us with just numbers one and two.
Next I will speak to number two. “Acceptable use?” The answer here should be obvious, “NO”? It does not meet acceptable use parameters. That is of course unless one defines acceptable use, as nothing more than “to use whatever label I want, or feel, whenever and on whomever I desire, irregardless of how ridiculous use of said label may be.”
In response to number one, “Does it make sense…?” “My Take” on this question should also be obvious. It makes no sense at all to label someone with a “________________” followed by the suffixes, phobia, phobe or phobic, where the “________________” is either homosexual or Islam, simply because one disagrees with either one (or both).
If one says, “I disagree with the homosexual lifestyle, based upon what the Holy Bible says according to Leviticus 18:22”, it makes no sense at all to label he or she as a homophobe / homophobic nor does it make any sense to try and describe his / her behaviour as “homophobia”. Similarly if one comments on an observation of recorded history, such as “The horrific events of 9-11 were carried out by 19 hijackers, all of whom were Muslims affiliated with al-Qaeda.” It in no way makes any sense to label said author is an Islamaphobe, or Islamaphobic, nor is the label Islamaphobia befitting!
In fact, in the case of the above noted statement of recorded history, if one were to say that he or she “…fears there will be further or future terrorist attacks from Muslims affiliated with al-Qaeda or any other terror group…” said proclamation of being fearful of further or future attacks absolutely does not fit the criteria needed, for one to be labelled an Islamaphobe. Based upon the verifiable number of terror attacks carried out by Muslims affiliated with al-Qaeda and other terror groups since 9-11 of some 17,899 (as of 23 October, 2011, 2227 hours GMT) [http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/] there is NOTHING irrational, ridiculous, uncalled for or otherwise “phobic” about admitting that fear.
Bottom line; are labels bad in and of themselves? Obviously not, what is however unacceptable and completely evil, are broad overgeneralizations being applied by LibProg idiots to people groups and / or persons, without regard for the meanings of labels being used.
And that my friends is Da Bauz’s Take
Posted by Da Bauz (The Boss) at 15:30