Onomasiology (n) – the study of choosing words to best express a concept.
The left has proven far more adept than the right at renaming unpopular ideas to make them palatable in conversation. Racial quotas become “Affirmative Action.” Terrorism becomes “man-caused disaster.” Contraception becomes “women’s health issue.”
To kill one’s child becomes “choice” or “abort.”
The left’s rule of rhetoric can be thusly stated: When specifics are uncomfortable, hide them within generalities. The goal is misdirection. The listener’s brain does not have to process slicing a baby into pieces to kill her, having it replaced instead with visions of parents making an unspecified choice.
Shame on the rest of us for playing along.
The English language prefers the specific to the general. This is true in creative and technical writing. In law, specific terms are deemed controlling over general terms. Only in the sophistry of politics can horrid images be hidden behind flowers and the speaker applauded for facing the issue and not avoiding it.
The word “abort” standing alone does not describe the procedure of killing your daughter. A mission can be aborted. A game can be aborted. The word abortion has a homonymic history of also meaning a physical deformity. “Abortion” is an inappropriate descriptor of tearing your son limb from limb until he dies. So why use that word, other than to avoid the real topic?
“Choice” is by far the heavyweight champion of political diversion. How the rest of us let it come so far in the lexicon of debate escapes me. The word choice is so broad it involves itself in the most mundane of daily forks in the road – boxers or briefs; work or play; shaken or stirred. Choice itself is never a problem. What specifically is being chosen – killing an innocent child – is the problem. No one is anti-choice as a general principle. We should all be anti-that choice specifically.
Words mean things, and it’s time for the political right to enlist the correct words. We can’t let the left pretend there is a polite way of talking about this. Never again should we allow in conversation the concept of violently killing a baby to be represented by intentional distractions like ‘choice’ and ‘abortion.’
It’s time to “stop and challenge.” Stop the conversation and challenge the misnomer. Don’t continue the conversation without this fight. When one mentions the “right to choose” ask them, “Choose what?” The initial response may be that you are taking the conversations off the rails or being facetious. Continue. Insist upon a response. The agitated answer you will get is, “Choose an abortion.” Respond that it’s too broad a term because a mission or a game can be aborted. Then insist, “Describe what you are choosing to do so I know exactly what you are talking about.” Make them say it.
This is the place in the conversation where you can take control of the description, because proponents of child killing will never, ever, describe it. They can’t face what they favor. You can then describe the insertion of a saw into the womb to cut a baby to pieces. They won’t.
You will be accused of anything from being intentionally inflammatory to crude and inappropriate (particularly if you are at a dinner table). This is what is most perplexing about the left: They can’t bear to hear someone speak of stabbing a child to death but actually letting people do it doesn’t bother them.
If the left is going to allow the mass killing of innocent children, make them say it.