Monday, November 14, 2011

The Need for Common Definitions

The brief clip below is a response by Bruce Lieske of ACT! for America at the OSCE (Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe) meeting at the Hofburg in Vienna last week.

Many thanks to Vlad Tepes for uploading this video:


doxRaven said...

We might need common definitions but we ain't gonna get them.
The exploitation of ambiguity of definitions of words is part of the political battle - there are no Queensberry Rules, this is not a gentlemen's game.

Memes are a different matter - GoV has posted on the issue.

Anonymous said...

Beware of definitions. They can trip you up and restrict you. The Army definition of "stereotype,' for instance, was quite different than the sociological definition I learned in college. The Army the battle to define "Unconventional Warfare" went on for some time (it may still be ongoing). The one accepted restricted the use of the term to specific instances, sometimes cutting out "by definition" some of the traditional meanings of the term. When we use terms such as racism, terrorism, islamophobia and so on, the words themselves often bring emotional weight. I think better than using an emotionally charged word with a recognized "definition" is to use use precise, unambiguous terms when framing an argument and to craft them specifically for each instance. Sure, more work for us, but we use the language with more precision, avoid painting ourselves into corners, and we take away the emotional reaction to charged words.


Anonymous said...

Wotan, I beg to differ.

When terms such as Islamophobia are used to villify honest, hard-working citizens; when a judge uses the term in his legal reasoning just because he happens to disagree with the defendant's position, then we have a problem.

Austria's minister of justice actually admitted the lack of legal definitions for the terms racism and Islamophobia.

By ignoring this, the state is playing into the hands of the OIC, acquiescing to Islamic blasphemy laws.

Thanks, but no thanks.


Anonymous said...

That ain't the way I heerd it.

The cockney-speaking guy was driving through rural England when he saw a hitchhiker along the side of the road who was, ah, a bit "physically challenge". The hitchiker had

- three eyes
- no arms
- only one leg.

So he decided to be kind, and pulled over. He threw open the door, looked the guy up and down and said,

"Eye, eye, eye! You look like an 'armless sort; 'Op in!"