a little political wordplay

someone showed me a glenn beck clip a few days/weeks ago so that we could scoff at his total disregard for what is actually news and roll our eyes in displeasure as he spouted nonsense.

he said something that made me really want to write him a letter though:

“you notice the democrats are always trying to tell you it’s just a democracy now, leaving out the republican part!”

i’m a linguist, and a fan of word etymology, and from my days as a scholar of latin, i wanted to tell him he was making a very stupid point.

first: let’s define terms.

REPUBLIC: from the latin res publica, things or wealth of the people, aka “a public affair”. in a republic, the ruler is not a monarch, and the people have some say in the law of the land. in general, a republic is governed by representatives of the people, rather than the people themselves.

DEMOCRACY: from the greek demos kratia, or people power. in a pure democracy, the people get to decide what goes down, and majority rules.

the U.S. is a democratic republic, which means that we are ruled by representatives that we pick. what glenn beck wanted to say was that democrats are trying to edge the republicans out of the name of our nation. this is very funny to me, and let me see if i can explain why.

glenn beck is a republican who believes that the government should not have as much power as individual people. yet the name of his political party would say that representatives of people, and not the people themselves, should the ones who rule things.

shouldn’t he try to rename his party then, or at least rebrand the words? i mean, by definition, republicans are people who think the people should have less say.


anyway, i don’t like glenn beck at all — i don’t like incendiary pundits whether they’re calling me names or calling other people names. and this is why i don’t get my news from privately-funded companies.


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