Not content to exceed its lawful authority with rent moratoriums and analysis of gun violence as a “public health” issue, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is now policing language.
Despite its sinking credibility with the public, the CDC recently saw fit to proclaim a list of “preferred terms for select population groups and communities.”
“To build a healthier America for all, we must confront the systems and policies that have resulted in the generational injustice that has given rise to health inequities,” the agency explained. “We at CDC want to lead in this effort — both in the work we do on behalf of the nation’s health and the work we do internally as an organization.”
Accordingly, it adds, “Achieving health equity requires focused and ongoing societal efforts to address historical and contemporary injustices; overcome economic, social, and other obstacles to health and healthcare; and eliminate preventable health disparities.”
And part of those efforts, it says, is “addressing all people inclusively and respectfully.”
“These principles are intended to help public health professionals, particularly health communicators, within and outside of CDC ensure their communication products and strategies adapt to the specific cultural, linguistic, environmental, and historical situation of each population or audience of focus,” the CDC notes. “CDC encourages all public health professionals and partners at the federal, state, and local levels to apply these principles across their public health communication work.”
This means adopting “preferred terms” – although the CDC doesn’t explain who exactly prefers the terms it wants public health professionals to use.
As one example of its doctrinal madness, the CDC wants to do away with perfectly good nouns such as inmate, prisoner, convict/ex-convict, offender, criminal, or detainee and replace them with phrases such as “people/persons who are incarcerated or detained,” “persons in pre-trial or with charge,” “people who were formerly incarcerated,” or “non-US citizens (or immigrants) in immigration detention facilities.”
Rather than disabled, handicapped, or even differently-abled, the healthcare industry should now go with “people with disabilities/a disability,” “people who are deaf or hard of hearing or who are blind or have low vision,” “people with an intellectual or developmental disability,” or “people who use a wheelchair or mobility device.”
Instead of drug users, addicts or abusers, alcoholics, smokers, or “persons who relapsed,” our health guardians should say “persons who use drugs/people who inject drugs,” “persons with substance use disorder” or “alcohol use disorder,” “persons in recovery from substance use/alcohol disorder,” “persons who returned to use,” and “people who smoke.”
In other examples, instead of mentally ill, we should use “people with a pre-existing mental health disorder”; for illegal immigrants or illegal aliens, or just foreigners, we should call them “people with undocumented status” or simply “immigrant” or “migrant,” and “non-U.S.-born persons/foreign-born persons.” Old folks now called the elderly or seniors should be identified as “older adults or elders,” or by their “numeric age groups,” for instance, people ages 55 to 64.
The CDC left no stone unturned.
The directive addresses the “preferred” terms according to, of course, race and sexuality, as well as whether they live in rural areas.
One other example: People considered part of a “high-risk population” should now be described as “People who live/work in settings that put them at increased/higher risk of becoming infected or exposed to hazards.”
“Language in communication products should reflect and speak to the needs of people in the audience of focus,” the CDC further explained on its website. Thus, these terms “represent an ongoing shift toward non-stigmatizing language.”
They also represent an ongoing shift into confusion, diluted meaning of words, and lunacy.
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