Fun Facts

Roget’s online thesaurus pulled its bullshit definition of “Arab” Monday after the ADC et al protested it. The thesaurus had given “Arab” the definitions “beggar,” as well as 16 other false synonyms like “homeless person” and “welfare bum.” Barbara Ann Kipfer, editor of the third edition of the Thesaurus, said: “We’re simply going to take it out… The last thing you want with a thesaurus is to offend anyone.”

No, Babs, the last thing you want with a thesaurus is to give the wrong definition/synonym for a word.

Link via Maud.

One thought on “Fun Facts

  1. I’m a little bummed out (or “Arabed out”?) that Roget’s Thesaurus pulled the derogatory entries for “Arab.” That’s useful information. How am I supposed to know if someone is harassing me? If you call me a “welfare bum,” I might get upset, but if I knew that you meant “Arab,” then I’d have to think about it, which would give you just enough time to run off.

    Now I’m beginning to wonder if Michael Guido, the mayor of Dearborn, Michigan (home to the largest Arab population outside any Arab-speaking country), was wrongly accused of racism when he won election back in the 80s on the “What to do about the Arab problem” platform–maybe he was just concerned with the plight of the homeless in Henry Ford’s hometown? I’ll have to write him a letter of apology.

    Speaking of apologies, the following groups, wrongly accused of being Arab, deserve one: beggars, bag ladies, derelicts, tramps, vagrants, stiffs, hobos, grifters, lepers, scumbags, pariahs, slimeballs, ragamuffins, tatterdemalions (those poor sons-of-bitches), bimbos, hussies, moochers, mudlarks, whippersnappers, and hucksters.

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