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I have a few loveable little quirks that drive my staff crazy. For example, I get millions of forms to sign for all sorts of reasons every day. There’s always a stack on my desk, and a list on my computer. So I dutifully sign them all, like I’m supposed to. Unless one of them, under the signature line, says “Provider.” On paper, I scratch out “Provider” and write in “Physician.”
I don’t know how to do that on the computer, so my staff has to print it out, make the change, have me sign it, scan it back in, then return it electronically. All because I refuse to sign my name as a “Provider.” They occasionally complain about what they call unnecessary work. I don’t listen. I’m not signing it until they fix it. And today I just learned that I’m not being as unreasonable as my staff thinks I am. From last week’s American Journal of Medicine:
…here is the irony of “providers.” The term was first introduced by the Nazis in the 1930s when trying to debase German physicians of Jewish descent. There were 1253 pediatricians in Hitler’s Reich, and almost half were considered Jewish by the Nuremberg Laws of 1935. When the Nazis ascended to power in 1933, the German Society of Pediatrics asked these physicians to resign. By 1938 the government simply revoked their licenses, so that instead of being called “Arzt” (ie, “doctors”) they were demoted to “Krankenbehandler,” that is, mere “practitioners” or “health care providers.” The term “Krankenbehandler” ultimately was applied to all German physicians of Jewish descent. Not only did they have to put it on their prescription pads, letterheads, and practice signs, but they also had to display it with a Star of David and the specification that they could only treat Jews. Soon after, mass deportations began. Words have societal implications.Of course, Nazi propaganda went beyond medicine. The Third Reich was a master at mobilizing the German language for political gains. To better equivocate and confuse the public, it created an entire Lingua Tertii Imperii, wherein deportation was turned into “evacuation,” torture into “intensified interrogation,” and executions into “special treatment.” Orwell discussed these issues in “Politics and the English Language” and then further expanded them into the “Newspeak” of Nineteen Eighty-Four. Needless to say, doublespeak is alive and well; consider “collateral damage,” “friendly fire,” and “downsizing.”
Leftists, like the National Socialists of Nazi Germany, the leaders of the United Soviet Socialist Republic, and modern American socialists don’t like reality, and hope to build Heaven on Earth. You may say they’re a dreamer, but they’re not the only one. And dreamers excel in molding language to fit their fantasies. So leftists are really good at this sort of thing — think of “social justice” (which is treating some groups differently than others based on their race), “anti-racism” (which is treating some people differently than others based on their race), and other terms the left uses to describe the way they wish things were, rather than the way things are.
Conservatives, who tend to be more aware of the existence of reality, struggle to understand (much less to actually use) such terminology. Most conservatives think of words as ways to describe reality, not ways to create a new reality.
So I don’t intend to sign my name as a “Provider.” If that earns me a Star 0f David next to my name on my Medicare forms like in the example above, I’ll be proud.
Is this a defiant clash of ideological violence? No, not really. It matters to me, but it probably doesn’t matter to most other people. It’s just one of many little things that bother me.
We need to stand up to the little things. We should start there.
But if we don’t stand up to the little things, then big things will follow. As surely as night follows day.
This is probably insufficient to impress Susan with her recent post, asking conservatives to stop just going along with leftism. But right now, that’s all I got. I should protest more loudly. I really should. After all, leftists are always talking about how Americans have a right to free speech, and protesting is a form of Constitutionally protected speech. After all, Black Lives Matter burned down cities across the country with no repercussions, and the Jan. 6 protestors walked through the Capitol with no repercussions — after all, they’re speaking truth to power. That’s what we do here, right?
Why not? It’s time for me to stand up for myself! Speak truth to power, just like Hillary Clinton says! Yeah! After all, the Constitution protects my right to free speech! Even if it is in the form of protest! Especially then, according to Democrats! That’s why Democrats are protecting the protestors from BLM and Jan 6! Thanks to the sacrifices of these Democrats, I’m now free to speak my mind! So I should speak out for what I believe in! Right?
Eh — maybe not. Maybe I’ll stick to scratching out words I don’t like on medical forms. I’m such a rebel…