Time magazine has published their annual poll of words they’d like to see banned from usage today. Previous winners have included such odious neologisms as YOLO and twerk, which people definitely don’t use anymore anywhere. This year’s crop of words are likewise an array of the insipid, banal, and “basic,” which, coincidentally, also appears on the list, alongside other worthwhile candidates for banishment, “I can’t even”, “sorry not sorry”, “kale”, “om nom nom nom”, and “disrupt.”
Interestingly enough, most of the hated words here seem to apply to those commonly associated with two of the most hated groups online: tech bros, and young women.
Speaking of hating women, the word that happens to be leading at the moment by a large margin, is “feminist.”
They equivocate a bit in the explanation:
feminist: You have nothing against feminism itself, but when did it become a thing that every celebrity had to state their position on whether this word applies to them, like some politician declaring a party? Let’s stick to the issues and quit throwing this label around like ticker tape at a Susan B. Anthony parade.
This is exactly the type of logic behind people saying “I’m not a feminist, but…” that has driven much of the discussion about feminism this year. Sadly, and predictably, the word has, in fact, been tarnished, not by feminists themselves, but instead by the people who explicitly set out to attach a negative connotation to it in the first place.
It’s just a goofy ass internet poll that means nothing, but the results are telling all the same. And it’s a good reminder that, if nothing else, continuing to use the word feminism is important, if only for how much it irks the people who hate it.
RELATED: About a month ago I proposed a few terms in common use on the internet that I would like to see shot off into space and landed on a comet.