There is something that I have been wanting to do for a long time: Talk about the “S-word.” This has been on my mind because the ramifications are too important to ignore.
While there are some people who openly talk about it as a good thing, there are far too many who avoid mention of this topic if at all possible. If they do mention it, it is generally in hushed tones, as though it was a “dirty topic,” never to be mentioned in polite society.
Aside from that, however, there are people who speak loudly against “The S-word,” using it as a pejorative.
Parents who think of themselves as respectable, God-fearing American patriots, fear exposure of their children to “The S-word” in school, by teachers who do not share their values. Fear of “The S-word” may even cause some parents to homeschool their children, or put them in private, parochial schools where no mention of “The S-word” will be made in their children’s presence.
For a great many Americans, “The S-word” is probably in fact the “dirtiest” word in the English language. Heaven forbid that they children grow up liking it, perhaps even engaging in various indiscriminate acts of “The S-word” with large numbers of people, even including strangers. It is something to be avoided at all costs, in their view, much like a plague. In fact, given a choice between Covid-19 and “The S-word,” I suppose that a certain, large faction of the American public would rather let themselves and their family be infected with Covid.
Despite the efforts of so many parents, the younger generations are much more fond of “The S-word” than their alert, “S-word” hating elders, much to their chagrin. In fact, “The S-word is much more popular in many other nations, if not the great majority of other nations, than it is in the United States. As with many other topics, the United States is something of an outlier with it comes to “the S-word,” in fact, in the public disdain shown for such a natural phenomenon.
Yet, it’s a word that shapes the lives of even Americans in many ways, and United States society itself along with it. No matter how a large portion of society attempts to deny it, “The S-word” is a fact of life throughout the world, which manifests in many different ways. Without it, in fact, there probably would be no United States, or any other, society, leading me to this point where I find it necessary to talk about it in this way, to make my point.
If you have not guessed it already, “The S-word” that I am talking about is “socialism.” This word, which I find to represent good social organization and practice, and about which I can find nothing bad, has come to represent some kind of boogeyman to conservatives – a ploy to scare people into voting against their own interests and instead, vote for the agenda of the corporate ownership class. According to the propagandists for the wealthy, “The S-word” is the dirtiest word in the English language, when in fact, it is no such thing.
Instead of scaring people with “The S-word,” I believe that it’s time to guard against a truly dirty word – perhaps the truly dirtiest word in the English language – which is “The F-word,” the letter “F” standing for “fascism.” The battle against fascism is the true culture war of our times, one which “The S-word” – socialism – will be needed to help us prevail over fascism.