As the Biden administration redefines the word “recession” to avoid being in one, it appears the editors of the Merriam-Webster dictionary have also engaged in a rewrite of the English language. According to a Daily Wire analysis, Merriam-Webster is modifying words and phrases to comport with far-left sensibilities.
The computer analysis compared the current dictionary with one from January 2020 – just predating the COVID pandemic and the rush of protests driven by Black Lives Matter. Here’s a sample of newly added abbreviations, words, and redefinitions from the first handful of letters in the alphabet:
Added: AAL, African American Language or African American English: “a variety of American English spoken chiefly by African Americans. Like all other dialects of English, with their own histories of how they came to be, African American English (AAE) is a systematic and complete language that operates under a set of rules.”
Added: AAPI, “Asian American and Pacific Islander.
Added: AFAB, “assigned female at birth,” as in “not everyone who is assigned female at birth (AFAB) identifies as a girl.” Also AMAB.
Added: anti-vaccination, with negative examples. anti-vaxxer was lengthened with more negative examples. “But state health officials and vaccine proponents have argued that unvaccinated children pose a health risk to others.”
binary was changed to add this example usage: “Sam Kilermann, a self-described ‘social justice comedian,’ is very serious about how far the complexities of identity go beyond the traditional binary of male or female.”
Added BIPOC: “Black, Indigenous, (and) People of Color… People are using the term to acknowledge that not all people of color face equal levels of injustice. They say BIPOC is significant in recognizing that Black and Indigenous people are severely impacted by systemic racial injustices.”
bible: All references to figures in the Bible, such as Eve, were rewritten to clarify that they were “in the Bible,” instead of assuming familiarity.
black: It is now “widely established” that the word should be capitalized when referring to race, though white generally is not.
black nationalist made a similar change, going from “advocat[ing] separatism” to “empower[ing] Black people.”
Black Panther transformed from “a member of an organization of militant American blacks” to “a member of a Black revolutionary organization that fought for racial equality and justice.”
blackness was added to refer to “the social and cultural identity and experience of black people” such as “I, on the other hand, feel it is my blackness (not my skin color so much as the culture that nurtured me) that causes me to open myself, acknowledge my soul and its varied components” and “exploring Blackness and gender identity within fine art.”
boost can now mean now only to “steal, shoplift” but also “to administer a booster shot.” It contains the sample sentence “Mr. Biden … pleaded with Americans to get vaccinated or boosted.”
boy changed from “an immature male” to “a child whose gender identity is male” and added the sample sentence “Call Me Max and other books in the series are about a young trans boy figuring out who he is.” Boy may also refer to “a male romantic partner,” it adds.
brother can now mean “a Black boy or man.”
Added cancel culture: “the practice or tendency of engaging in mass canceling as a way of expressing disapproval and exerting social pressure. For those of you who aren’t aware, cancel culture refers to the mass withdrawal of support from public figures or celebrities who have done things that aren’t socially accepted today.”
classism went from “prejudice or discrimination based on class” to a lengthy section involving “a belief that a person’s social or economic station in society determines their value in that society,” such as “the show explores classism and white privilege by comparing how school administrators treated him, as a rich white boy from a family with Ivy League pedigree, versus how they treat Latina and working-class Moe.” Or “the systemic oppression of the lower class and middle class to the advantage of the upper class,” such as “This is one way to dismantle the power difference society’s privileges grant us through such institutions as racism or classism.”
colonialism went from a brief definition referencing the British Empire to a borderline essay explaining that it is “Sometimes considered to encompass non-state forms of influence and domination.” colonize swelled from 53 words to 353 to accommodate new definitions and examples like “Before colonizing the artistic and intellectual work of Black people, white people should ask themselves questions such as, how can I contribute to this Black person’s wellbeing? Am I studying this work for the explicit purpose of Black liberation?”
color-blind went from the positive “not influenced by differences of race” to “often suggests a failure or refusal to acknowledge or address the many racial inequities that exist in society, or to acknowledge important aspects of racial identity.”
come out now includes “openly declare one’s sexual orientation or gender identity,” such as “came out as bisexual.”
To the phrase conversion therapy, a ‘note’ was added: “NOTE: Conversion therapy is generally regarded as having no scientific basis and as being both ineffective and harmful.”
cotton-picking as a replacement for “damned” is now “widely considered offensive.”
Added critical race theory: “a group of concepts (such as the idea that race…is a sociological rather than biological designation, and that racism…pervades society and is fostered and perpetuated by the legal system) used for examining the relationship between race and the laws and legal institutions of a country and especially the United States.”
dab went from “a gentle touch or stroke” to an essay on marijuana and “a dance move originating in hip-hop that is performed by bending one arm at the elbow, dropping the head so that the face is near the crook of that arm, and usually extending the other arm so that it is parallel with the forearm of the bent arm.”
Added decarceration: “release from imprisonment” as in “There is much talk of defunding the police but little of decarceration–freeing from prisons people who are locked into place because they don’t have the financial wherewithal to afford the gentler and more understanding criminal justice system.”
Added demisexual, “feeling sexual attraction towards another person only after establishing an emotional bond with that person”