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Opinion

Slurs are demeaning and disrespectful

by Alan Lew

 

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            If we want equality we can’t be oblivious to all the wrongs around us.  The majority of America has moved past the “everyone who is not like me is a second class citizen” mentality, yet they still use words that emphasize that idea.

            I’m not preaching kindness to all, but I feel that if you are trying to berate someone, use words that don’t carry a culture or group with them.  Use words that focus on an individual, not a stereotype or a group of people.

            Offensive words are necessary in everyday life because some deserve it.  Although while intending to offend that person, an individual should not use words that hurt others unintentionally.  Commonly used terms today have historical bases that are really destructive.

            "Nigger" (not "nigga") is a word that has roots in 1800s racism and was used to refer to an African American.  Now it is used as a disrespectful term for a person regardless of ethnicity.  How can we end racism if we still use words that were at the heart of it?  To a user of this word it may seem like just any other insult.  However to someone else it may be deeply offensive because historically it emphasizes an individuals inferiority.

            "Fag" or "faggot" originally meant a bundle of sticks for burning but now refer to gay men.  This was because in the past homosexuality was frowned upon, and, like these sticks, people felt that gays should be burned.  "Fag" is now essentially synonymous with stupid.  In the words of rapper Macklemore, “a word rooted in hate, yet our genre still ignores it, gay is synonymous with the lesser.”

            "Chink" once meant a narrow opening but became a term for people of Chinese descent.  The word is considered to be as offensive to Chinese people as "nigger" is to African Americans.  However, now the word is used as an adjective to describe a person’s eyes.  For example, one might say that another has “chinky eyes."  This is offensive because it implies negativity.

            For some, words are words and are meant to be used.  They see no offense in what they say.  Individuals with this mindset are right to an extent.  It all depends on context; saying something as a joke is different than saying something as an insult.  However, what’s funny to one person may be offensive to another.

            Before using a word, know its roots.  Know what it means, who it was intended for and what the repercussions would be if you used it.  An African American businessman may choose not to hire a person who says "nigger."  A gay teacher may not be as kind to students using "faggot."  An Asian dentist may not give the necessary painkillers to a patient commenting on "chinky eyes."

           

           

            

Overuse of literally drives journalist to literally go on a rant

by Hans Oberschelp

 

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            “It's literally 1000 degrees outside.” “He literally makes me want to a punch kitten.” “I literally blew my brains out.”

            If literally still held the meaning it used to, upon hearing any of these things, the average person would freak out. But today it seems more and more the word literally implies just the exact opposite of its original meaning.

            In fact, in March 2013 the Merriam-Webster dictionary added a second definition of literally, “in effect: virtually.” Last time I checked virtually meant absolutely positively not literally, but maybe I checked too long ago, because the day has finally come where English is out of words to express non-sarcasm. It is literally impossible to create a serious sounding sentence.

            Literally isn't the first word to degrade into another variation of very much so. Really evolved from it's original implication of being real to become a word commonly thrown around (and often repeated) for emphasis. The 80s were particularly cruel to totally devolving it from its original meaning of entirely and fully to a surfer dude catch phrase.

            But in both these cases synonymous words could fill in for really and totally when they lost their effect. In totally's case completely was a fine substitute, and in really's case... all that was left was literally.

            Which brings us to the problem that there is literally not a single effective substitute for literally. Actually works all right, but it is too uncommonly used to fill in the gap left by literally quickly enough. Seriously is a little better, but it too is on track to fade into overuse, with phrases like, “It is seriously freeing outside” already common.

            Imagine for a moment that a bomb is about to go off under your friend's house. How do you, in one sentence message him that he must evacuate or he will literally explode? Okay, so that example is pretty farfetched, but it is quite frustrating to express sincerity without adding an “I'm not kidding!” or an “I'm dead serious.” How else will you be able to capture the drama of the time when you got lost in the forest and you were literally starving, or the hilarity of Lady Gaga's costume made literally out of meat?

            “Literally” was literally the last commonly used English word to demand seriousness. Now we have nothing, and English is doomed to degrade into sarcasm. If we are to avoid this fate, we must reverse the new use of “literally”, or hastily find a replacement.

 

The Lincoln Log's Top 10 Best and Worst Memes

by the Lincoln Log Staff

 

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Top 10 Internet Memes That Should Make a Comeback (In No Particular Order)

 

1. Lex Luthor took forty cakes: He took forty cakes. That's as many as four tens. And that's terrible. What better a way to express your hatred for something than to compare it to Lex Luthor? Also, the sheer redundancy of the line makes it even better, and that's terrible. Terribly great, that is.

2. 60s Spiderman: Ah Spiderman, what would the internet be without you? Thousands of frames of this classic TV series are just waiting to be captioned. From sexy posing on railroad tracks to burning down buildings, turning the heroic superhero into an arrogant jerk is still hilarious, and 60s Spiderman needs to rise back to its glory days.

3. Grumpy Cat: Grumpy cat is everywhere, ruining all the things you thought were fun and interesting. Honestly, we would be sick and tired of him if he wasn't so darn cute. And so we endure more grumpy cat captions and drown in his adorableness.

4. Every Futurama Meme: Something about Futurama makes it incredibly quotable. Not Sure if Trolling or Just Stupid, I Don't Want to Live on this Planet Anymore, and Shut Up and Take My Money are great reaction faces. Tried and true, Futurama memes are the definitive way to express your feelings through pictures of cartoons.

5. Troll Science: Troll science is a paradox. It gives infinite ways to get rich, acquire infinite power, and get to space that you know are impossible, but feel so close to working. After all, can you really explain why shining a flashlight out the back of your car doesn't send you traveling at the speed of light?

6. All your base are belong to us: Engrish has never been funnier. There isn't any particular time when it is appropriate to use this meme, but on the off times that it is used, it's funny. It doesn't make any sense, but that's sort of the point isn't it.

7. Foul Bachelor Frog/ Foul Bachelorette Frog/ Lazy College Senior: These three memes bring out the worst in society. One one level, we feel superior to the revolting actions of these characters, but at the same time, lets be honest, you've looked at a caption to Lazy College Senior and thought, “Oh god. I do that!”

8. Rickrolling: Rickrolling never got old. Phishing for unsuspecting victims with misleading thumbnails and then shoving Rick Astley down their throats is still a ton of fun. So why did people stop rickrolling? We don't know. So lets unstop right now.

9. Courage Wolf: Inspirational? Ludicrous? We don't know but courage wolf is fantastic for simultaneously pumping you up and giving you an impossible confident character to look up to/ laugh at. Courage Wolf is never gonna give you up! Never gonna let you down! Never gonna run around and desert you! Never gonna make you cry!

10. Doge: Such creativity. Much options. So conflict. Wow.

 

 

Top 10 Internet Memes That Should Go Away Forever (In No Particular Order)

 

1. Keep Calm and X: We aren't even sure what happened here. For some awful reason our of nowhere everyone and their grandma started spamming this on forums, slapping it on t-shirts, and even saying it in real life! People put whatever they wanted in for X: things that weren't even puns and didn't even rhyme. It was never funny.

2. Malicious advice mallard: Malicious Advice Mallard is a total ripoff. Remember the OG advice animal, Advice Dog? It was the exact same thing! Is Malicious Advice Mallard meant to fool poor souls into actually taking the advice, mistaking it for Actual Advice Mallard? That's just mean!

3. Confession Bear: Confession Bear was all fun and games when it was still used to post silly relatable confessions, but then it started being used to post felonies to anons on the internet. And that's creepy.

4. Rage Comics: In their infancy, rage comics were pretty funny. You could use them to share interesting stories in a creative way. Then people started using them to complain about everything that annoyed them. And then people started wearing troll face t-shirts.

5. Cool Story Bro, Tell It Again/ Cool Story Babe, Now Make Me a Sandwich: This meme had so much potential! When it was sarcastically used to trick somebody into thinking you were interested, it was novel. Then people started adding “tell it again” to the end, ruining the sarcasm. Then people started directing it at females and telling said females to make sandwiches. By that time this meme has died in a pit. 

6. Dolan: This meme is long dead, but we put it on this list praying and hoping that it will stay that way forever. The disfigured Donald telling disfigured Gooby “pls” and making rape jokes never made any sense. It was just creepy.

7. Ermahgerd: What was wrong with "derp?" It was funny, flexible, and didn't specifically target people making the same face and speaking with a lisp.

8. Am I the Only One Around Here Who X: Similar to Keep Calm and X, you are better off just writing what you feel about in a well structured, original paragraph. This done to death meme doesn't do anything but give people a vehicle to force their minority opinions with no evidence.

9. Le Whatever: What is even the point of this? Is tacking "le" in front of every word funny and French? Are the French funny? Le sigh.

10. Doge: Wow. Much overuse. So pointless. Such stupid.