Let’s start with some Sunday sibilance, in the form of semantic satiation.
“Semantic satiation” is the term linguists use to describe a word or term that has been mangled, overused, misused, redefined or in some cases cynically manipulated to the point that the word or term becomes useless at best and dishonest at worst.
We offer into evidence, “Conservative,” or “Conservatism.” The terms have become noise. In this case, White Noise. (See what I did there?)
Semantic Satiation. A word that fills you up with bloating gas but has no nutritional or communicative value. A word that no longer means what it used to mean, like “defecated.” (Look it up, historically. I ain’t your damn librarian.)
Other examples: “Awesome.” “Terrific.” And, of course, “gay.”
Words that now mean the opposite of what they appear to mean are known as “contranyms,” or “auto-antonyms.”
What the hell is “conservative” about folks who call themselves “Conservatives” these days?
What exactly do they conserve? They conserve nothing. In fact, they have become reckless, hedonistic, uber-consumers who mindlessly burn through everything, including natural resources, Earth’s atmosphere, brain cells, democratic institutions and principles, and now, shamefully, schoolchildren.
They have not conserved intellect. They have not conserved education. They have not conserved logic. They have not conserved either personal or political integrity. They have not conserved dedication to, or even acknowledgement of, the existence of observable facts and truth. They certainly have not conserved “adulthood,” choosing instead to hunker down in a child’s pretend “blanket fort.”
And they certainly have not conserved freedom. Rather, they have simply and cynically redefined it as personal selfishness, convenience and abdication of all collective responsibility.
Oh, and the “Big Government” thing? That’s certainly not “freedom” trying to pry into women’s uteruses.
Ron DeSantis and Greg Abbott are “Conservatives”?
There is nothing conservative about 2022 Cult Conservatives. Nothing.
Good language is precise language. Good language is language that means what it says, and is impossible to misconstrue.
“Conservative” is bad language. Because it has come to mean the polar opposite of what it claims to mean. It is in fact a contranym or an auto-antonym.
So I’m not going to call these folks “Conservatives” anymore.
I’m going to call them Rainbows.
Put that in your pantry with your cupcakes, Cupcakes.