Globalwarmist, Assangist, Birther

12 04 2011

Three new words being used around and about. Only time will reveal  how successfully they penetrate the lexicon. Linguistically, they follow something of a pattern: each denoting someone who is or does something specific, like teacher, doctor, builder or horticulturalist, anarchist or linguist.

Globalwarmist -a person who subscribes to the belief that global warming, caused by humans’ heavy carbon footprint, is threatening Earth in serious and perhaps irreversible ways. Although the contexts in which I have seen this word being used so far impart a neutral stance, I suspect that globalwarmist may assume some negative connotations, depending on who uses it, to whom, and in what context. If globalwarming is perceived as a new religion of sorts, then a globalwarmist would take on the meaning of a particular kind of zealot.  Used in a sentence: They’re both globalwarmists so you can imagine what they talk about at breakfast.

Assangist –  a person who believes in/follows/subscribes to the belief system/political credo of Julian Assange and Wikileaks, essentially the hacker’s doctrine, that all information wants to be free. At this stage in the uncovering process,  and appreciating that it’s as yet early days, I wonder why so far so much of the leaked information is that which supports the thinking of the enemies of the West. Doesn’t everyone have secrets?  Used  in a sentence: They went to the public lecture but the debate was dominated by Assangists.

Birther – a term used for an apparently growing (?) number of American citizens, among them Donald Trump (he with the hair), who suspect that President Obama may not have been born in the USA as claimed and therefore would not have been eligible for the Presidency.  There’s a quality to this rumour that smells intensely like an urban myth – the apocryphal that never seems to satisfy attempts at authentification. Conspiracy theories are thick on the ground, especially when distrust of government prevails. Used in a sentence: Birthers started out as the lunatic fringe but who knows where they’ll end up.

image courtesy of Gage Skidmore

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