Who says we're not getting too politically correct?
Here are some excerpts from the Quarterly Review of Doublespeak:
A reader reports that when the patient died, the attending
doctor recorded the following on the patient's chart: "Patient
failed to fulfill his wellness potential."
Another doctor reports that in a recent issue of the American
Journal of Family Practice, fleas were called "hematophagous
The letter from the Air Force colonel in charge of safety said
that rocket boosters weighing more than 300,000 pounds "have an
explosive force upon surface impact that is sufficient to exceed
the accepted overpressure threshold of physiological damage for
exposed personnel." In other words, if a 300,000-pound booster
rocket falls on someone, he or she is not likely to survive.
A reader reports that the Army calls them "vertically deployed
anti-personnel devices." You probably call them bombs.
At McClellan Air Force base in Sacramento, California, civilian
mechanics were placed on "non-duty, non-pay status."
That is, they were fired.
A personal ad from an unidentified newspaper announces that a
"formerly single man" seeks a single or married woman.
After taking the trip of a lifetime, our reader sent his
twelve rolls of film to Kodak for developing (or "processing,"
as Kodak likes to call it) only to receive the following notice:
"We must report that during the handling of your twelve 35mm
Kodachrome slide orders, the films were involved in an unusual
laboratory experience." The use of the passive is a particularly
nice touch, don't you think? Nobody did anything to the films;
they just had a bad experience. Of course our reader can always
go back to Tibet and take his pictures all over again, using
the twelve replacement rolls Kodak so generously sent him.
The description on the package of Stouffer's Veal Tortellini
with Tomato Sauce says it contains "exquisite egg pasta."
The list of ingredients, however, includes "cooked noodle
In St. Louis there is an oriental rug store that advertises
The Minnesota Board of Education voted to consider requiring
all students to do some "volunteer work" as a prerequisite to
high school graduation.
Senator Orrin Hatch said that "capital punishment is our
society's recognition of the sanctity of human life."
Scott L. Pickard, spokesperson for the Massachusetts Department
of Public Works, calls them "ground-mounted confirmatory route
markers." You probably call them road signs, but then you don't
work in a government agency.
It's not "elderly" or "senior citizens" anymore. Now it's
"chronologically experienced citizens."
According to the FAA, the propeller blade didn't break off, it
was just a case of "uncontained blade liberation."