Language of the left

I was talking with a friend tonight about how the use of clique-y language can be alienating to people, even if it is unintentional. This is especially true of the left I think. Many terms that we use have strong grounding in the history of movements and politics, but to an “outsider”, someone new to activism or politics etc., these terms can present extra barriers.

The term NGO is a prime example. Just this past week I have used this term with a couple of friends, and they’ve had to stop me and ask “NGO? What’s that?”. I remember the same thing happening to me when I started to become active, and I remember lamenting at the time how this language and these terms were so confusing and alienating. Seems I’ve falling into the same trap.

Time for me to pick up my game…