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The right words for illness and sick

In brief: It was once called simply blind, deaf, then replaced by the blind, the deaf, and then the visually impaired. On the initiative of the sick themselves, today, we are going back to the factual facts about the state of health. Simple, blind, deaf-like words are once again permissible, even more appropriate than evasive euphemisms. And it's not just that fashion goes in circles - the main reason is surprisingly the effort to preserve the greatest dignity of the sick.

The change comes as usual in English. Anglo-French have weakness for euphemism. In the chain of euphemisms, they have gone so far as to begin to call the people with disabilities "people with disabilities". But when the enthusiasm of replacing short words like "blind", "deaf" descriptions unsuitable for infamy, people have realized that the euphemistic description actually carries out judgments about abilities, which is even worse than the simple statement of the disease. Beethoven was deaf, Maresjev was legless, but he did not have the reduced ability (not at least compared to ordinary people). In an effort to address this, "disability" was further replaced by the coverword "challenge" as in untranslatable "mentally challenged". Then the term "differently able" appeared, perhaps translated as "otherwise adapted", perhaps because of the fact that fashion psychiatric diagnoses (autism, pseudomonas "child hyperactivity with attention deficit disorder", Asperger syndrome ...) did not have to be considered disease. But the Beethoven insisted they were only deaf, and if they were "otherwise adapted", not because of their deafness. They have adapted their disability according to their possibilities, they know best what they are and are unable and feel embarrassed when others pretend to be true what is not true. The story of the English euphemisms for the handicapped I was watching only marginally to be "in" in grammar, so I think a little, but that's how it was. Of course, these topics have certainly been written in the United States, for that matter, for some strange "social group studies", so the refinement of literature for those interested should not be an emergency.

Most recently, in the professional labeling of diseases, it has been neglected to see whether the words are used as pejorativa and that their actual importance has been taken into account. Perhaps "crippled" is back in. (Do not confuse with the creten, which is the most staggering euphemism I know.) In English there are whole guidelines on how to use the words "impairment" ⊃ "disability" ⊃ "handicap". In Czech, the situation is less pronounced. Cover concepts of "physically / mentally handicapped" are still descriptive and do not imply any trials, although for their greatest glory, a deeper factual description of the disability is considered to be inaccurate. In fact, the only word that can be furious about is sickness / sick, which is replaced by the preferred pattern of disease / illness after the English model. I write this text a little too to show that I know about it, even if I do not intend to avoid the ill-used words illness, sick, hospital. Otherwise, I welcome the development towards etymological accuracy. I hope it will also lead to the emancipation of other short, etymologically correct nosyms and ethnonymes, which have been mistakenly censored as mere insults.

| 19.12.2010