14.7.14

Let's change the terminology

The other day, my friend Chuck posted on his blog and I asked if a word was a typo or new slang (hey: I'm old, I'm not up on what the hip kids are saying these days).  He responded something about my being a grammar nazi, and I suggested he was looking for the word "pedant."  There's a whole dictionary out there, with words like pedant and stickler and dogmatic and persnickety.  Why not use them?

Here's my rant (you knew one was coming, right?): using the word nazi to describe someone who is a stickler for rules or protocol or well, whatever, is beyond wrong.  If you end a sentence with a preposition, I'm not going to cart you off to some concentration camp where Work Will Make You Free.  I'm not going to send you to a gas shower because you don't know how to use a semicolon.

Real Nazis?  They didn't care about grammar (or soup, or dress codes, two name two other "nazi" types). They cared about racial purity and the Fatherland.  They cared about killing and doing it as efficiently as possible.  They cared about establishing the 1,000 Year Reich.

So the next time you're tempted to call someone a nazi, think about it.  Even in jest, it's a horrible thing to call another person.  To diminish the real horror of what Hitler and his Nazis did by adding "grammar" or "soup" or "weeding" before "nazi"  is to dishonor those who died fighting them, those who died because of them.

Aren't you better than that?

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