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Methinks the King’s English doth evolve, mayhaps.
That’s my pet peeve of English language drift. Mutinous legions of the Roman army were decimated; that is, one in ten soldiers was randomly executed as an example to other would-be mutineers. ‘Decimate’ was a fine word to indicate the loss of a tithe, more or less. In recent times, ‘decimate’ has evolved to evoke overwhelming losses, with perhaps only a mere tithe of the original sum, or meaning, remaining. To state that Hitler’s ‘final solution’ decimated the Jewish population (e.g.) would be deemed acceptable usage today, although far more than a tithe of the extant Jewish population fell victim to the Nazi policy of selective genocide. (So sue me for Googling, and for the further secularization of the word ‘tithe’ as well.) The dictionary may be unforgiving and unbending, perhaps like the Ten Commandments; but the English language lives and evolves like life on Earth, or science, or modern views on Christianity, which has by now largely eschewed slavery but was once upon a civil war employed to justify it.
William Safire would agree with me (and likely you) on ‘decimate’. I mostly disagree with Safire’s conservative opinion pieces, although I admire his work as a curmudgeon of the English language. He assiduously separates these aspects of his work. I view his example to be worth emulating, and I urge you to consider doing so.
I found, sometime during my continuing childhood, while toasting marshmallows on a campfire, that I preferred to let my marshmallows catch fire and burn to a blackened crispiness on the outside with a molten white gooey interior. It never occurred to me to bemoan the fact that it would have been inappropriate for me to refer to my marshmallows as ‘holocausted’. Even less appropriate would be calling such a marshmallow a ‘kike on a pike’, despite the macabre humor (not that you did or would).
“I do not need to be constantly reminded not to forget.”
I concluded upon reading this phrase that ‘overcoming’ equated with ‘getting over’ holocaust-wise. I did not leap to this conclusion, Charlie. You led me to it. I couldn’t avoid tripping over it.
Sorry, Charlie- but many other people do need reminding. In a world filled with Holocaust (big H used here to differentiate from Cajun cooking) deniers and American students oblivious to History (and therefore doomed to graduate anyway?) ‘never forget’ is a never-ending battle. ‘Never forget’ is prerequisite for ‘never again’ (as forgetting or denying must precede repeating, unless you dig that stuff).
You speak of cheapening the site, yet you persist in perpetuating the animosity between your self-esteemed self and select members. You act to perpetuate that which you proclaim to abhor. I am not without sin. I am working on that log in my eye. How is the mote in yours coming along? I’m living in a glass house with a pocketful of rocks.
Do you want to play?
“SECULAR HUMANIST SCIENTIST!”
So what if others use pictures and words to obfuscate? You use The Word for the same purpose.
I enjoy the clash of opinions here. I would prefer less personal animosity here. Be a saint, Charlie and stop stop stop it. Please? I do not wish to further poison this site.
"A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesman and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do."
- Ralph 'Where's Waldo' Emerson
"I don't know half of you half as well as I should like. And I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve."
- Bilbo Baggins