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Michael Matteo: American Newspeak – 1984 is here

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Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author.

From 1984: “Don’t you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it.”

Most people are familiar with George Orwell’s novel, 1984, which is about a dystopian world controlled by Big Brother (the government). Big Brother uses both historical revisionism and language control to exercise power over the people of Oceania. The language of the novel is known as Newspeak.

Today, America is faced with its own form of Newspeak, which has become political correctness on steroids and it has sometimes been referred to as “wokabulary.” Under the guise of tolerance and sensitivity, people are told that certain words should not be used and there are numerous replacements for these words. It is a form of intolerance that Big Brother would be proud of, and in the words of Syme (a character in 1984), “It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of language,”  which is sadly embraced by so many wokesters and members of academia in America today.

Words like woman, husband, wife, brother, sister, and parents have been placed on the hit list of words that shouldn’t be used because they have implications about gender and the new god of woke individuals is the idea that gender is fluid, which is a notion that was first put forth in the 1960s by John Money, a sexologist who is given credit for coining the terms, “gender role” and “gender identity,” among many others. Money was also a man who believed that certain forms of pedophilia were acceptable. He believed that “affectional pedophilia” was merely eroticizing parental love, in other words, sex with children was okay if it involved “love.”

Money also loved to create new jargon words for psychology including: “gynemimesis (when men like to dress as women), paraphilia (when a person is sexually aroused by people or things that are unable to return the affection), and autonepiophilia (when a person is sexually aroused by activities like wearing diapers and acting like a child) as well as many other words about deviant sexual practices. Those obsessed with renaming words and creating their own words to justify delusions are merely following what Money did fifty years ago.

As the battle for control over the American language continues, new skirmishes are continuous. We have all seen the videoed temper tantrums of trans people who have gone ballistic because they were referred to with a pronoun they didn’t like. Dozens of new words are being invented every day and young people are being programmed to use these words or they might be criticized, ostracized, or canceled for using the unacceptable words. Margaret Atwood, author of “The Handmaid’s Tale,” had to deal with a Twitter backlash for using the word “woman.” Instances of educators and notable individuals apologizing for the use of phrases like “pregnant woman” or using the wrong gender pronoun are increasing as the intolerance of the new thought and language police intensify their efforts.

The website Pronouny.xyz has a list of 75 pages of pronouns that should be used in place of the pronouns, he, she, him, her etc. Some of these “new” pronouns include er, pi, hy, cer, xey, pitter, puppy, ye, fai etc. So, to be inoffensive you might be forced to use a sentence that reads, “By the end of the day, fai started throwing the frisbee to fairyself,” (this sentence is actually suggested on their website.)  In some instances, emoticons are also being used as acceptable substitutes for gendered pronouns.

John Money is long dead, but his spirit lives on in the destroyers and rewriters of the English language. Vitor Schreiber the project manager for a learning app, Babble, stated, “We all have to get on board and agree to use language that recognizes that not everyone identifies as male or female.”  However, shouldn’t this apply in reverse? When someone calls a heterosexual male or female “Cis-gendered,” shouldn’t those given this label have a right to object to it?  Yet this is taken for granted because those using this label would say, “But that’s what you are!” No, that’s their perception of what someone is, much like calling someone a “he” or a “she” is the perception of the person based upon what they see.

I’ve heard many liberals make the claim that “speech is violence.” This is a ridiculous assertion and it is the freedom to speak one’s mind that is the essence of democracy and it is the foundation for a free society.  Censoring words, demanding people use certain specific words or speak the way you want them to speak is the antithesis of freedom and illustrates another quote from 1984, “But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought.” Language is corrupting the thoughts of young people on a daily basis at universities across America.

It’s time that the minds of young people are no longer corrupted by those who believe that their “feelings” are valid sources to educate students. Disagreement is not hatred. Discourse is not violence. Dissent is not disrespect. Altering vocabulary to make it appear more sensitive, yet in most cases makes it more confusing does not help communication, which is the purpose of words. When a person uses the word he or she, it’s very easy to figure out, but when someone insists that people use gender-neutral reflexive pronouns like eroself or yemself, it overcomplicates something that was initially quite simple to understand and hinders communication.

When people bow down to those who are offended by the words “pregnant woman” and force themselves to use the new term, “birthing person” or replace “breastfeeding” with “chestfeeding” they are not being sensitive; they are enabling intolerance.

The terminology isn’t isolated to transgender wording, but it is simply part of the new victim culture, where people are either perceived as being oppressed or oppressors. Words like intersectionality, micro-aggression, virtue signaling, mansplaining, performative activism, toxic masculinity, heteronormativity etc. have invaded the English language like the barbarian hordes who destroyed the Roman Empire. They say the use of these words is to empower those who see themselves as powerless, but the real intention is to defend their right to say and do what they want while denying others that same right of freedom of expression. Many of these individuals will argue that the burning of the American flag is protected speech, but will demand the cancellation of someone who uses a gendered pronoun. They will never be happy until everyone conforms to what they want, and they will make what Orwell wrote in 1984 a self-fulfilling prophecy, “The Revolution will be complete when the language is perfect.” Sadly, their idea of perfection and true perfection are worlds apart.

Michael Matteo
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