Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Slang and political journalism

Oh, wow. Ta-Nehisi Coates goes all out:

Slang goes out of style for a very good reason--at some point the words or terms of the day fail to properly describe a new day, a new situation, a new time. The reason why people who aren't a part of group sound stupid using slang, is because they often don't understand the words they're using on any deep level--they're just parroting what sounds cool. Ditto for all these cats running with this team of rivals notion. When you repeat that line--something which Obama is more than happy to see reporters do--what you're basically saying is "I quit. I refuse to respect my subject enough to think about what he specifically represents."

The best thing about the human brain is that it's original. None of us think the same. When thinkers amd writers refuse to employ that originality, when they opt against telling us what is particular, what is specific, what is unique about this moment in time, when they decide to go with the easiest received wisdom at hand, as opposed to deliberating, as opposed to banging their heads on the wall until they arrive at something new, than they are not writers or thinkers any more, but henchmen in the employ of propagandists. I say that as an Obama fan. Stop fucking pushing the cliches this dude is feeding you. Wake the fuck up and think for yourself. This is exactly how we got into Iraq. This isn't a damn game.

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