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Jun 21, 2020
This week’s theme
Words made with combining forms

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Words coined after metals

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AWADmail Issue 938

A Compendium of Feedback on the Words in A.Word.A.Day and Other Tidbits about Words and Language

Sponsor’s Message: Coronavirus got you down? Feeling cooped up? Going stir crazy? WISE UP! -- is the perfect cure for cabin fever -- it’s a Wicked/Smart Party Card Game that asks tons of devilishly difficult questions that’ll give you know-it-alls plenty of life lessons in humility, history, sports, science, literature, and geography. And wit. For example: Everyone knows the First and Second Amendments -- what’s the Third? Sleeping Beauty’s real name? How long is a furlong? But beware, there’s also a slew of “challenge” cards that chuck Darwinian physical and mental wrenches into the works, e.g., “Throw this card on the floor and pick it up without using your hands.” Just what the doctor ordered, especially for this week’s Email of the Week Winner, Ben Wilbur (see below), and hunkered-down brainiacs everywhere. WISE UP! NOW.

From: Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)
Subject: Interesting stories from the Net

A Grammar Lesson for Justice Alito
The Web of Language

AP Changes Writing Style to Capitalize “b” in Black
The New York Times

Bookmark Alignment Chart: Which One Are You?

From: Kerry Pettis (gmak65 gmail.com)
Subject: Lithophones

I had never heard of musical rocks until 2018 when a Colorado archeologist made the connection with stones found near the Great Sand Dunes National Park here in Colorado. She had puzzled about the stones for a long time until someone sent her a video (similar to the Vietnamese one you posted) of lithophones being played and she had an aha moment. I LOVE that ancient people had a connection to music just as we do today.

Kerry Pettis, Broomfield, Colorado

"The only rock band in the world"
From: Rich Ball (richball comcast.net)
Subject: “The Only Rock Band in the World”

Some 45 years ago I found the accompanying poster folded into a book in a seminary library where we were researching for a film project. I took a picture of it.

Dating from 1903 it shows three musicians in front of a “Monster” stone marimba with the claim that it represents the only rock band in the world. “Marvelous ringing rocks... dug out of the mighty Skiddaw Mountain, England.” A framed print has hung in my office ever since and it still brings smiles.

Rich Ball, Oak Park, Illinois

From: Bruce Reaves (reavesb earthlink.net)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--lithophone

I figured lithophone would mean “hard of hearing”.

Bruce Reaves, Gibsonville, North Carolina

From: Kimberly Breeze (kwbreeze gmail.com)
Subject: jade organ

Some years ago on a grand tour of China I had the opportunity to hear music played on a “jade organ”: a few dozen largish slices of various colors of jade suspended from three tiers of a wooden frame. They were struck by the player with a variety of mallets of varying size and composition. The sound was eerie and unique, not quite a bell or a gong but ringing and varied in tone and pitch depending on the size and thickness. Chinese music is other worldly enough; with this ancient instrument, only recently reconstructed from a grave painting, it was extrordinary.

Kimberly Breeze, Florence, Italy

From: Sandy Stiles (sandystiles77 gmail.com)
Subject: lithophones

I enjoyed learning about the word, lithophones. We had a wonderful time in Tanzania playing with some tuneful rocks a few years back, and if anyone lives near Hickory Run State Park in PA, please bring your rock hammer and enjoy inventing some songs in the boulder field. The rocks have an amazing tonal clarity!

Sandy Stiles, Owego, New York

Email of the Week -- Brought to you by Wise Up! -- the family that plays together stays together.

From: Ben Wilbur (benwil comcast.net)
Subject: lithophone

This is a word I first encountered in high school, taking an evening course on Richard Wagner’s Ring of the Nibelung opera. The section entitled “Das Rheingold” included a scene where the ring is forged, and the score called for 18 tuned anvils. I’m not sure if it is the largest lithophonic orchestra section, but it must be up there.

Wagner was not the only one to compose for the anvil. If one googles “anvil chorus”, there are several selections, such as Verdi’s Il Trovatore (The Troubadour) (3 min.).

Ben Wilbur, West Hartford, Connecticut

From: Nann Blaine Hilyard (nbhilyard att.net)
Subject: lithophone

When I saw today’s word I thought of Fred Flintstone making a telephone call.

Nann Blaine Hilyard, Northbrook, Illinois

From: Alan Shuchat (ahs613 gmail.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--lithophone

In 1989, in the south of France, my wife and I went to a “concert des pierres”. We weren’t sure what it would be -- a rocks concert? We knew what a rock concert was but not a rocks concert. The percussion turned out to be stones “tuned” to different pitches.

Alan Shuchat, Newton, Massachusetts

From: Allen Thomson (thomsona flash.net)
Subject: Lithophone

And I thought it would be something like geophone. But no. Although the thought of playing the planet like a musical instrument is intriguing.

Allen Thomson, San Antonio, Texas

From: Brenda J Gannam (gannamconsulting earthlink.net)
Subject: aischrolatreia

When I was a post-graduate student of Arabic in Cairo, we used to give each other nicknames in Arabic. Mine was Umm al-wisaakha, which roughly translates to “mother of filth” or “source of filth” because of my propensity to tell bawdy or off-color jokes -- a trait which my colleagues much enjoyed, all the while teasing me about it.

Brenda J. Gannam, Brooklyn, New York

From: Jerry Delamater (comjhd hofstra.edu)
Subject: symbols

H. sapiens is the species that invents symbols in which to invest passion and authority, then forgets that symbols are inventions. -Joyce Carol Oates, writer (b. 16 Jun 1938)

Joyce Carol Oates’s wonderful comment should be the basis for any discussion about the American flag and the national anthem. It should be emphasized that pledging allegiance to the flag is a symbolic action, and no one should be forced to do it (as the 1943 SCOTUS decision WV v Barnette affirmed), nor should anyone be chastised for kneeling during the singing of The Star-Spangled Banner.

Jerry Delamater, New Haven, Connecticut

From: Sharon Cregier (scregier pei.sympatico.ca)
Subject: henotheism

The world’s most popular religion? Self-worship.

Sharon Cregier, Kings Point, Canada

From: Sally M. Chetwynd (brasscastlearts gmail.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--hyponym

“In fact, the word prunes at this time was used as a hyponym for all and any dried fruit.” Sue-Belinda Meehan; Ask Sue-Belinda; Townsville Bulletin; (Australia); Dec 15, 2014.

Just as “corn” has been used historically as a hyponym for all and any grain.

Sally M. Chetwynd, Wakefield, Massachusetts

From: Martin Stephen Frommer (msf2547 aol.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--geratology

Is this the correct spelling? What about gerontology?

Martin Stephen Frommer, PhD, New York, New York

The two are synonymous, though some draw a distinction between the two. See here.
-Anu Garg

Words Coined Using This Week’s Combining Forms

Lithonym: When Jesus declared that his follower Simon would be called Peter, was he creating a lithonym?
-Bill Stephany, Burlington, Vermont (wstephan uvm.edu)

Hypology: noun: An understudy example: Broadway back up performer. verb: My college career.
-Paul G Ross, Pembroke Pines, Florida (paul.g.ross.gszh statefarm.com)

Lithonym: A word coined by someone who is stoned.
Geralatreia: the tendency of a nation in decline to place or retain cranky old men in its positions of leadership.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

Geratophone: Any of the sounds associated with the foibles of old age, e.g., the incessant clicking of the turn signal that one has forgotten to turn off after passing another car.
-John Schoonover, Sayre, Pennsylvania (schoonoj gmail.com)

Aischrology: The study of Trump’s administration (or his whole life, for that matter).
-Lee Entrekin, Old Fort, North Carolina (harpo mindspring.com)
-Nancy Kopp, Neillsville, Wisconsin (porchprincess yahoo.com)

Lithotheism: Belief that stones are gods. If we were Lithotheists, stone structures would be heresy.
-Enita Torres, Houston, Texas (enitatorres gmail.com)

Aischronym: Why Svetlana Alliluyeva had to change her name.
Geratophone: The snap, crackle, and pop when old people move too quickly.
Henology: The course of learning that leads to expertise but limits one’s point of view.
Lithotheism: Unshakeable belief in god, alt. idolatry.
Hypolatreia: The primary firing offense in the current administration.
-Dave Conant, French Lick, Indiana (davefb123 gmail.com)

Lithophone: A stone musical instrument.
Litholatreia: The worship of stone, see Stonehenge.
Lithotheism: A religion that worships stone. See Baetylus, The Makapansgat pebble.
Lithonym: Having one’s name carved in stone. See also runes, steles, and tombstones.
Lithology: The study of stones.
Aischrophone: Awful noise. Usage: My daughter’s ranting was aischrophonic.
Aischrolatreia: The worship of horrible sounds. See heavy metal.
Aischrotheism: A religion that believes in ugly noises. See The Holy Church of the Screech Owl.
Aischronym: Names that are not allowed by California law. Usage: Elon Musk’s choice of name for his baby, X Æ A-Xii, was rejected by the State of California based on rule 47b which states, “Parents may not saddle their offspring with aischonyms.”
Aischrology: The study of the ugly and shameful, Usage: Aischrology has become another victim of the Feminist Movement as almost all scientists in the field were male, which created suspicions of their classifications of what was considered ugly or shameful.
Henophone: An ancient musical instrument that produced only one sound. Different henophones each had their own sound, so it required several players to gather together in order to make music.
Henolatreia: While not true worship, henolatreia is practiced by some autistic persons who seek out a certain sound that gives them comfort.
Henotheism: One known cult believes in a specific tone that they claim lets them communicate with aliens and also heightens orgasms.
Henonym: Being known by one name, such as Enya, Beyonce, Iman, Sting, Cher, Madonna, Bono, etc.
Henology: The study of people with a single name. One may minor in henology at the Tisch School of the Arts.
Hypophone: The sounds that are under recordings. Some CSI labs scrutinize the hypophones under cell phone messages and 911 calls to further their investigations.
Hypolatreia: The worship of the underdog.
Hypotheism: The religion based on the Bible verse: “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”
Hyponym: The name given an undercover agent.
Hypology: The study of everything below the Earth’s crust.
Geratophone: One of many sounds of old age, some spoken such as oof and eh? And some emitted such as knee creaks, slurping, and flatulence.
Geratolatreia: The worship of ancient things, a common occurrence among antiquarian book dealers, lovers of Old English and other extinct languages, antique shop owners, and women commonly referred to as gold diggers.
Geratotheism: A common element in the Abrahamic religions.
Geratonym: The practice of including the name of a deceased relative when naming a child.
Geratology: The scientific study of old age, the process of aging, and the particular problems of old people.
-Nancy R. Griffith, Sacramento, California (rahijasaad hotmail.com)

Geratophone: A person whose use of defunct slang terms reveals their advanced age.
Geratolatreia: Gimme that ol’ time religion!
Geratotheism: Ditto; it’s good enough for me.
Geratonym: A name popular in your grandparents’ generation but out of fashion today.
Geratology: The careful observance of the elderly by those somewhat their junior in a futile attempt to avoid becoming old and annoying themselves.
Lithophone: One who tries to overcome a speech defect by, like Demosthenes, speaking with pebbles in the mouth.
Litholatreia: The practice of using hallucinogenic or other psychoactive substances during, or as a component of, worship.
Lithotheism: The compulsion to pick up attractive stones and take them home, no matter how heavy they make your suitcase. A probably incurable condition.
Lithonym: Any name having to do with stone, e.g., Ebeneezer, Peter, Hermes, Mason, Kamen, Stanford, Penninah, Lei, etc.
Lithology: The study of the stones one has brought home; in particular, an attempt to answer the existential question of what to do with them now.
Aischrophone: 1) One who realizes to have just said something utterly stupid or offensive, with no possibility of retracting it; 2) any involuntary and embarrassing bodily noise.
Aischrolatreia: Worship of things deemed shameful or ugly. Obviously, what constitutes these attributes varies widely from time to time and culture to culture; see aischrology.
Aischrotheism: Belief in a god that is not the same god the person who has called you an aischrotheist believes in.
Aischronym: A name that, through association with a repugnant person of the same name, becomes so abhorrent that anyone afflicted with it changes it to something else. Except for aischrolatreists, of course, who dote on shameful and ugly names.
Aischrology: Branch of ethnology concerned with cultural standards of beauty, decency, shame, etc. A seminal examination of the subject may be found in Rod Serling’s “Eye of the Beholder”.
Henophone: A single telephone for an entire household. Now considered woefully inadequate.
Henolatreaia: Excessive interest in one thing, typically a food or a topic of conversation, to the exclusion of anything else of its kind. In extreme cases, henolatreaia can lead to malnutrition and/or loss of dinner companions.
Henotheism: The belief that one thing at a time, and that done well, is worth more than riches, as many can tell; unitasking; cf multitasking.
Henonymism: A rare condition in which a parent decides to give all of their children the same name; see George Foreman.
Henology: Broadly, the study of one subject or discipline; more specifically, in academia, the conviction that one’s particular field or subfield (or subsubfield) is the only one worth studying.
Hypophony: The peculiar tendency of cellular telephones to seek the lowest level of a pile of books, newspapers, dirty sweatshirts, and the like. Recent studies suggest that this is most likely to occur when their ringers are turned off, rendering them fiendishly difficult to locate.
Hypolatreia: The appreciation and cultivation of all things understated, unassuming, and unpretentious, coupled with a strong aversion to anything that might be construed as highfalutin’. Although mild forms of hypolatreia are generally considered harmless, in extreme cases inverse snobbery may set in.
Hypotheism: The (discredited) belief that the Pledge of Allegiance has always contained the words “under God”.
Hyponym: Any name that is a common diminutive or variation of another name. In English, for example, hyponyms for the name Elizabeth include Eliza, Liz(zie), Betty, Betsy, Bess(ie), and Beth, clearly different personalities on the Myer-Briggs Type Indicator. Hyponyms are invaluable for allowing an individual to choose the variant of their given name that best suits their desired persona. An abrupt change of hyponym, as when a Bessie decides overnight to become a Liz, may reflect a profound upheaval in a person’s state of mind. Hyponymania, the frequent changing of one’s hyponym, is symptomatic of an identity crisis. (Although unusual, ahyponymia, the failure to choose any hyponym, is not included among the disorders listed in the APA’s DSM-5.)
Hypology: Any study undertaken by a snob or snobs to examine -- and then ridicule -- something they believe to be beneath them.
Aischrolith: A stone one has brought home in direct violation of signs warning against the taking of any stones or shells from a natural area.
-Carolyn Currie, Chicago, Illinois (curriecp gmail.com)

From: Leonard Schweitzer (lenschweitzer charter.net)
Subject: gender word study

Has it occurred to you, to anybody, that malfeasance performed by a henchman of a corrupt leader is always male gender. Why is there no female equivalent of an evildoer’s follower? Is there no similar characterization, such as henchwoman or, neutrally, henchperson or, for that matter, someone of indeterminate sex, henchLGBT.

Leonard Schweitzer, Fort Worth, Texas

Not sure. Could it be more than 90% of offenders are male?
-Anu Garg

From: Alex McCrae (ajmccrae277 gmail.com)
Subject: aischrolatreia and lithophone

After letting the meaning of our combined-forms, tongue-twister-of-a-word, aischrolatreia, sink in, I harkened back to the formative lean years of the then-much-maligned, and in my view, much-misunderstood American writer, Henry Miller. During his early expat Paris years (1930-1939) he and writer Anais Nin became intimates... abiding kindred creative spirits, living amongst a motley mix of established and aspiring writers, artists, and performers, all riding the wave of the new modernist movement in the arts. Here, I’ve depicted Henry and his dearest, Anais, perhaps post-coitus (oh behave!), Henry jotting down some titillating lines for a novel in progress, perchance. Both Miller and Nin found a ready market for their rapidly churned out erotica, what the critics of the day deemed “obscene”... pure smut. Reflecting on the total oeuvres of both Miller and Nin, one might argue that they might fit the profile of lives inordinately preoccupied and focused on “aischrolatreia”. Miller’s infamous raunchy tomes like his early “Tropic” books*, were, as the dated saying goes... “banned in Boston”... and major literary markets around the globe, for many years, deemed “obscene” in the eyes of the official US gatekeepers of literary moral rectitude and basic common decency. The admittedly hackneyed notion... “Obscenity is in the eye of the beholder” may obtain here. *Miller was on a roll with the arrival of his rhyming trio of controversial, erotically-charged novels... Nexus, Plexus, and Sexus... all published by the out-there, adult-content-centric Grove Press.

Here, I’ve pictured a Cro-Magnon man, playing what he would have regarded as “music”, on one of the earliest-on-record lithophones. Perhaps the ancient precursor to our modern day xylophone/vibraphone? Eat your heart out, late-great jazzman Lionel Hampton. Ha! Necessity often being the mother of invention, our stone-age percussionist is using long bones for mallets, whilst a musically inclined bird, akin to today’s woodpeckers, hammers away as his accompanist. The rudimentary instrument’s varied-sized, aligned slats would likely be fashioned from slabs of stone, akin to slate. Froggy is also gettin’ into the groove, shaking his turtle shell rattle, filled with tiny pebbles. Possibly our Homo sapiens ancestors’ first maracas?

Alex McCrae, Van Nuys, California

Anagrams of this week’s words

1. lithophone
2. aischrolatreia
3. henotheism
4. hyponym
5. geratology
1. ooh, the rhythm!
2. erotomania
3. philosophy
4. see clearly
5. into aging
     This week’s theme: Words made with combining forms
1. lithophone
2. aischrolatreia
3. henotheism
4. hyponym
5. geratology
1. stone chimes
2. my worship of the highly obscene
3. monotheism
4. animal with a shrimp, adder; tree with oak
5. gerontology
-Dharam Khalsa, Burlington, North Carolina (dharamkk2 gmail.com) -Robert Jordan, Lampang, Thailand (alfiesdad ymail.com)


Boasts cave man to skeptical mate,
“Behold! I’m about to create,
from nothing but stone,
a fine lithophone!”
She sighs, rolls her eyes,”I can’t wait!”
-Anne Thomas, Sedona, Arizona (antom earthlink.net)

He never felt so all alone
While playing on his lithophone.
The unusual beat
Was such a wasted feat,
Still he kept beating on a stone.
-Lois Mowat, Orinda, California (lmowat1810 gmail.com)

Such music cannot fail to cheer
Anyone who is present to hear
The wonderful tone
Of the strange lithophone
Even those with a so-called tin ear.
-Sara Hutchinson, New Castle, Delaware (sarahutch2003 yahoo.com)

The caveman took pride in his drum,
As simple a drum as they come.
Though nothing but stone,
This lithophone’s tone
Had made him a rock star to some.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

They say, can’t get blood from a stone,
but it seems that you can get a tone.
If you strike two together
they won’t play Stormy Weather
but it is music from a lithophone.
-Zelda Dvoretzky, Haifa, Israel (zeldahaifa gmail.com)

It is not hard to see in one’s mind
Beatles, on a shore shipwrecked confined,
Create a lithophone
Out of scattered loose stone
And perform for the heavenly kind.
-Shyamal Mukherji, Mumbai, India (mukherjis hotmail.com)

Now the caveman all on his own,
Had invented the lithophone.
Though he used his own head,
And the stone knocked him dead,
It did make such a lovely tone.
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

My family let out a big groan
When I took out my old lithophone.
They said that they missed
Brahms, Chopin, and Liszt,
For these aren’t played with a stone.
-Janice Power, Cleveland, Ohio (powerjanice782 gmail.com)

Wrote Stormy, “With knockers of silicone,
I drummed on his head like a lithophone.
The sound was quite hollow;
This orange Apollo
Then suckled them like a vanilla cone.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

Says she to her mate, “Yesterday
I discovered your porn hideaway!
I had no idea
your aischrolatreia
would lead to such moral decay!”
-Anne Thomas, Sedona, Arizona (antom earthlink.net)

They dropped by his dorm on their date,
And taken aback by its state,
She thought, “Mama Mia!
Such aischrolatreia!”
His prospects were not looking great.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

His limericks are not always clean.
Some are raunchy, some verge on obscene.
His aischrolatreia
prepared him to be a
scribe on the walls of a latrine.
-Zelda Dvoretzky, Haifa, Israel (zeldahaifa gmail.com)

A young student of music who liked to drone
On a sleek instrument made of granite stone
Would play through the night,
Giving neighbors a fright,
Until some irate guy stole his lithophone.
-Judith Marks-White, Westport, Connecticut (joodthmw gmail.com)

Said the priest, “For your aischrolatreia,
Build furniture bought from IKEA.
Such torture’s hellfire;
It purges desire
Way better than Ave Maria.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

The great god Pan won the election
As the animal party’s selection.
“Henotheism now,”
He said with a bow.
“Rights for all gods is now best direction.”
-Sara Hutchinson, New Castle, Delaware (sarahutch2003 yahoo.com)

I once met a free-thinking mystic
Inclined to the henotheistic.
“To one God I’ll pray,
But I’ll also say
That may be just way too simplistic.”
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

The ancients were polytheistic --
Creating tales wild and mystic.
Created a schism
And lots of folks just went ballistic!
-Bindy Bitterman, Chicago, Illinois (bindy eurekaevanston.com)

When he heard the word henotheism,
The rooster felt tense pessimism.
“Female worship? What poop!
I’m the lord of the coop!”
Then he crowed -- a defense mechanism.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

When words for my verses I choose,
A hyponym’s what I might use.
I’ll be quite specific,
And mention “Pacific”
When speaking of nice ocean views.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

Idiocracy, rule by the dim,
Is of government one hyponym.
But there isn’t a word
For the kind so absurd
That its president sighs: I love Kim.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

If it means that I’m old and declining,
I’ll sit back and enjoy without whining.
You can’t fool biology,
So hello, geratology!
It’s a great sunny day -- and I’m shining!
-Bindy Bitterman, Chicago, Illinois (bindy eurekaevanston.com)

At my age I seem now to be
Well-versed in geratology.
Each morning I awake
To a new pain or ache
To add to my chronology.
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

In a case of applied geratology,
“Briefing books are a bore, much too college-y,”
Says Donald. “Real men
Ignore paper and pen;
When you’re perfect, you make no apology.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


Telethon volunteers are bored un-lithophone rings. (un-less a phone)
-Phil Graham, Tulsa, Oklahoma (pgraham1946 cox.net)

When you’re in a redwood forest let your aischrolatreia two.
-Phil Graham, Tulsa, Oklahoma (pgraham1946 cox.net)

Regardless of what Trump does, his minions keep hyponym.
-Phil Graham, Tulsa, Oklahoma (pgraham1946 cox.net)

The course description of Geratology 101 said it offered a perspective on the impact of Seinfeld on American culture and language, yatta yatta.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

From: Alex McCrae (ajmccrae277 gmail.com)
Subject: Trump’s Foibles & Follies

"I'm the least racist person you'll ever meet."
Trump revealed his true white-supremacist colors back in August of 2017, in his addressing the media shortly after the combustive August 11-12th “Unite the Right” neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, VA, where major violence had erupted between the marching, tiki-torch-toting, Jew-hating, invective-spewing white nationalists and counter-protesters. Sadly, one non-violent activist, Heather Heyer (32) lost her life in the fray, while 28 others were injured when James Alex Fields, Jr., a neo-Nazi/white supremacist, wantonly plowed his car into peaceful counter-protestors denouncing the neo-Nazi rally, leaving that city and the nation in a state of shock and collective grief.

Trump’s response to the press was “there were good people on both sides.” In other words (his words), there were good neo-Nazis and good counter-protesters “on both sides”. What’s the big deal? The rally was sparked by the City of Charlottesville declaring that they would be removing the statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee from their city park. The announcement ignited the ire of the “Unite the Right” bigot fringe. In the wake of the murder-by-cops of George Floyd, the #Black Lives Matter movement for racial equality has come to the forefront, and with its rise, a timely reassessment of institutional racism and police brutality that had lingered and been perpetuated to this very day.

There’s now a call for changing the names of all ten US military bases named after deceased Confederate generals, including Ft. (Braxton) Bragg, Ft. (John Bell) Hood, Ft. (Henry) Benning, and Ft. (George) Pickett. NASCAR, the quintessential “good-old-boy” Southern institution, has just banned all Confederate flags and images thereof, from all their events. The popular country-crossover-group, Lady Antebellum, has changed their name to Lady “A”. Of course, “The Great Divider”, Trump, opposes what he would claim are attempts to erase our true American “heritage”; albeit, part of that heritage being rebellious, slave-owning racist (mostly) Southerners, whose prime imperative, mid-19th-century, was to leave the Union, while still retaining their racist, slave-master way of life, and plantation mentality. Can we say “The Civil War”, boys and girls?

Alex McCrae, Van Nuys, California

Be kind to thy father, for when thou wert young, / Who loved thee so fondly as he? / He caught the first accents that fell from thy tongue, / And joined in thy innocent glee. -Margaret Courtney, poet (1822-1862)

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