Misuse and Abuse of Language in Politic
Misuse and Abuse of Language in Politics
Language is considered a powerful tool in the field of politics and politicians have had an antiquity of misuse of the English language. The main agenda of most politicians is for self-affirmation to sway and owe their followers to support them. Politicians attempt to make lies sound truthful and to give solidity to their political phrases and terms. The language of politics is based on killing and winning in totality without considering any recollection. Although their use of manipulative language is sometimes agreeable, it’s however not commendable when the politicians’ intentions are profound and ill (Orwell, 67). Despite their ideologies and personal stances, they are still statesmen who are more interest to witness the well-being of the entire nation. Instead of using scheming language to obtain power, they should be protecting their citizens from political influence.
George Orwell examines the present state of modern English in his essay, Politics, and the English language. Orwell scrutinizes the common cause of language abuse and misuse while also outlining the possible outcomes and possibilities of abusing the English language. The author points out how ambiguity and incompetence characterize political writings in the form of English prose. He claims that root of abuse language can be traced to the growing use and reliance on metaphors for communication purposes. It is unfortunate that some of the metaphors used have lost their meaning, and they are only used as a communication aid. This is because, among metaphor users, most of them are mainly not interested in the conversation while others are not aware of what they are saying. The reader or listener of such conversations is unable to comprehend the meaning and, therefore, most end up losing interest (Mills, 236). Authors may use certain words and phrases with the notion that the reader will interpret the concept, but sometimes the reader has an entirely different meaning to the same concept. This is a clear indication that modern prose and Orwell believes that this can only be averted if everybody stays on guard to monitor the language abuse and misuse.
Orwell points out how the “political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respect while giving an appearance of solidarity to pure wind.” Politics of Amnesia have transpired for the last few years as politicians no longer mind what happens or what emerges after they make their assertions in public. Political campaigns are the root course of abuse and misuse of English language. A politician will always attempt to woo their supporters to vote for them despite their abuse of language (Abrams, 23). Their success is based on false promises and they mostly use metaphors and other literary terms that have lost meaning. They always explore the present possible means to woe for votes from their supporters but end up misusing and abusing the English language.
Among the most outstanding modern day term for the abuse and misuse of the English language are neologisms. They are mainly phrases and words that are commonly applied in our daily lives but are yet to be integrated into the mainstream English language. However, it is based on the evolving nature of the English language with time. Politicians have continuously created new words to describe a particular concept or idea that was previously expressed in other phrases to suit their need for addressing a particular situation. However, this can also span to the creation of entirely new words or coming up with the new meaning of already existing words. For example, during the 2012 U.S. general election campaign, several phrases of neologisms evolved. Any politician who always changed his political stance to suit his supporters and also maintain their personal goals and objectives were referred to as “mittheads.” The term “republicants” was used to mean the Republican Party members who were not in a position to comprehend the meaning of their party initials GOP. However, the act where a contender proposed a policy that adversely affected his or her electability was referred to as moon-basing (Moore, 409). This was all in the quest of competition between the two competing parties, the Democrats, and the Republicans. Each party meant to tarnish the name of the other party in the name of winning support from the voters.
Apparently, politicians have taken into doublespeak by twisting words to connote a meaning entirely different from the actual meaning. They are subject to using words that do not mean what they say to lie in ways that sound honest. Politicians have continuously been blamed of hate speech that is a euphemism that means speech or policy that everyone is against and, therefore, each individual advocated for its elimination. However, they are styled in a manner that that promotes hate and maybe written by individuals who meant no hate. Political correctness is another doublespeak term that is used to imply how masses conform to the recognized principles or else receive punishment for past sentiments (Abrams, 24). These terms are used by deceitful individuals who might utilize this moment to practice trickery activities. However, the central idea may seem acceptable but the given description means the opposite of what one contemplates.
Politicians regularly employ political jargons and idioms to address a political issue in a faster and coded manner. However, it is not easy to comprehend what the phrase or terminology connotes. Many are the times that one cannot resist listening to what political leaders have to say to woo supporters to vote for them. They, therefore, refer themselves as fiscal conservatives and social moderators (Watson). The jargon fiscal conservative is mostly used by many potential political aspirants to question government’s expenditure on the tax payer’s money. Most of them use this idiom to show the citizens that the current government officials have been embezzling public funds, and they, therefore, should not be awarded another term in office. Instead, they request voters to test their governance skills by voting them (Reeves, 6). They also refer themselves as social moderates to represent their neutral position during the controversial discussion that pertain race, gender and other matters such as abortion and endorsement of gays. Their intermediate points help them to woo supporters from several political grounds.
However, politicians also logical, emotional and ethical appeals to woo the support of the voters. Politicians use ethos to prove, maintain and better their characters from the face of the public and voters. For example, politicians regularly use phrases such as “I believe” and “my record has shown” to applause their characters among voters. The element of pathos may also be used to depict the emotions of the contender as they persuade the voters quickly by utilizing personal stories that he or she has managed to help others or put things together (Orwell, 89). Politicians also employ the use of logos to present their reasoning by how their tone varies to prove legitimacy and instill hopes to the voters.
Politicians manipulate their language for the personal interest which is wooing the support and votes from the citizens. However, politicians use various literary styles to tarnish the face of their political rivals. Some are very keen to observe and question the activities of their competitors hoping that supporters will consider that and, therefore, vote for them. There have always been political battles between the ruling party and the opposition party (Znamenski, 537). However, most incidences of language misuse and abuse are conspicuous during campaigns as the politicians try to woo voters to forsaken to their woes and thus elect them. Politicians use various literary styles to make lies look truthful. They, therefore, uses different political terms and phrases in the wrong context to express and present their opinions concerning a given areas of focus.
However, the politicians fail to consider that they are also statesmen, and they should, therefore, uphold the growth and development of the entire nation. Their fake promises affect the whole society if they fail to deliver their assurances. Instead, their successes achievements should be used to judge the ability to lead the community. The best fix to the downfall of English fall on individual responsibility where everyone should play his part to ensure the English language is guarded against self –made terms and phrases (Reich, 45). Orwell advocates that it’s more commendable to use the simplest words to express a concept or policy instead of using jargons and metaphors that are only suitable for their context and irrelevant to the external society.
Abrams, Douglas E. “George Orwell’s Classic Essay on Writing:’The Best Style ‘Handbook’’for Lawyers and Judges (Part I).” (2013): 23-25.
Mills, Dan. “On Language, Theology, and Utopia by Francis Lodwick (review).”Utopian Studies 25.1 (2014): 235-238.
Moore, Andrew. “On the state of scientific English and how to improve it–Part 1.” Bioessays 35.5 (2013): 409-409.
Orwell, George. Politics and the English language. Penguin UK, 2013.
Orwell, George. Why I write. Penguin UK, 2014.
Reeves, Alistair. “Time to make it shorter: Plain English in our context.”Medical Writing 24.1 (2015): 4-8.
Znamenski, Andrei A. “From” National Socialists” to” Nazi”: History, Politics, and the English Language.” The Independent Review 19.4 (2015): 537.
Watson, Don. Watson’s dictionary of weasel words. Random House Australia, 2011.
Reich, Pavel. “Exploring the Potential of Integrating George Orwell’s Language Theories into English Courses Designed for Students of Political Science.” (2014).
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