How Niggardly of You

In the ever escalating war to castrate the English language of any relevance, usefulness or accuracy comes this little treat:

The County of Los Angeles has requested that equipment vendors avoid using the industry term “Master/Slave” in product descriptions and labelling.

To the tech geeks out there this is nothing new. Master/slave refers to when one device controls another and is used in lots of hardware documentation. As is the idea of male/female plugs.

How fucking retarded.

And yes – I do mean retarded. As in slow to wit. As in not realizing the greater worldview of a single concept. Not as in someone with actual mental cognition difficulty or other differently abled disability.

I mean fucking retarded.

I’m all for ditching the term Orientals or coloreds. Or referring to the mid-East as Mid-East Asia.

But this total ignorance of the English language – as well as the ignorance of technical concepts and procedures – and a blindness to that ignorance is just so goddamned stupid.

2 thoughts on “How Niggardly of You

  1. Jay

    I disagree, especially when the very richness of the glorious English language already has myriad ways in which to express the computer hard drive master/slave concept of dependency. Try Primary and Secondary and many other combinations. And this is not about just being PC, bloody hell. Language expresses culture and if we are “evolving” not only through our genes but also through memes, it is indeed a positive development when we wish to get rid of the concept of slavery even if applied to machines. Hey, someday these machine may be sentient, yeah? But I understand your frustration… I also happen to be a linguist… Cheerio! Jay

    COMMENT:
    Well, if you ask me, this is terrible. If you look closely, you will see a reason behind it. Only people with huge feelings of guilt would try to pull off something like that. There’s such thing as political correctness, when you don’t go calling a mentally handicapped person a retard, but master/slave? Who gets offended by that, anyway? Machines? Programs? Give me a break. And I should point out that slavery of black people might have been abolished, but modern-day capitalist slavery is just as sinister. (I don’t know if there’s any point in mentioning varios S&M practices 🙂

  2. philtre

    Oh, and primary and secondary doesn’t explain the relationship in question. I should know, since I’m in IT. If you change the term master/slave to something like boss/subordinate, they’ll just try to change that as well in about a hundred years.

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