Friday, June 15, 2018


Words change in meaning. Divisive used to mean dividing people unnecessarily, or creating dissension.  Admittedly, that would always have to be subjective.  Even when applying that precise a value, one would have to acknowledge that the person or group being divisive doesn't see themselves that way. They see themselves as being right - as reformers, or remnant believers, or fighters for principle. Each could see the others as the truly divisive ones.

Still, we seem to have drifted to a meaning of "won't do as we tell them." Submitting evidence of the other being the primary initiator or primary offender is not even given a covering statement. It is a word now used to conjure rather than describe or explain.

Perhaps it was ever thus, and I was less observant.


Texan99 said...

Right, divisive as in "doesn't agree with us, the good guys." But it reminds me of a funny skit, Paula Poundstone I think, about stewardesses fomenting tribalism in an airplane by constantly commenting on what can be seen from the right windows or the left windows. After a while, the passengers on the left are thinking, "We hate the passengers on the right. They ruin everything."

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Irrelevant comment. My younger brother knew Paula in Sudbury, and was friends with her younger sister Peggy.