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George Carlin?

George Carlin, where are you now that we need you? There was a time when there were seven words you couldn’t say on the air. Funny how times have changed. Now, there’s a new set of seven words as the CDC jockeys for funds in the new year. The original seven are used freely, not only in movies, but in polite company and in politics every day.

Since when are the words “fetus, diversity, science-based and evidence-based” dirty words, as well as “transgender, entitlement and vulnerable”?

Oh, dear George, where are you, now that we need you? His social commentary would have been a blast.

Miriam Goldstein, Medina



I was horrified to learn that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has agreed to limit its vocabulary, its ability to communicate important information to all Americans and its First Amendment rights to free speech.

How is our nation harmed by the use of words such as “fetus, vulnerable and evidence-based”? The demand for “1984” style Newspeak is as dangerous as any epidemic. I ask that the CDC and other agencies of the Health and Human Services department facing similar bans reconsider their decision to bow to this ban, or at least voice their reasons for “only following orders.”

Faith Thunemann, Bellevue


How about ‘quackery’

As medically- and public-health-trained professionals, we were certain that we were being spoofed when we heard that the CDC had been banned from using certain words in preparing its budget for next year. Alas, it is true.

Examples include “evidence-based” and “science-based.” Fortunately, we have been able to discern that there are a number of other useful words that the CDC can use for this project. These include: wishful thinking, hearsay, phlogiston, alchemy, divination, Magic 8 Ball, séance, witchcraft, fake news, sorcery, transmutation, quackery, ballyhoo, Ouija Board, smoke and mirrors and bigly, among others.

The CDC is the paragon of excellence for a public health organization in the world. It is our hope that anyone believing that the progress of science is for the greater good in the United States will loudly object to this astonishing censorship of science and insist that this sort of censorship be rejected in any public or governmental matter.

Anita Peñuelas and Michael Martin, Seattle



I suggest that in all of its news releases, CDC could use “(insert banned term here)” and include a link to the article on this subject in the list of references. Thus, for example, “Our work on birth defects caused by the Zika virus includes research on the developing (insert banned term here).”

Michael Marsh, Seattle


Used in sentences …

An evidence-based news report reveals the the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been banned from using seven long-standard terms in budget documents. The taboo list, notable for its diversity, is to be applied agencywide and transgender.

CDC officials who rely on science-based work to develop policy were reported to be incredulous. The Trump administration is now vulnerable to yet another downgrade in its capacity for fact-based analysis and sound judgment — to well below that of a fetus.

Sandy Marvinney, Seattle


‘Mind control’

How can anyone with a modicum of common sense see the latest directive forbidding the CDC from using such words as science-based, evidence-based, vulnerable and diversity in official documents for next year’s budget as anything but a misguided attempt at mind control?

By forbidding the nation’s top public-health agency from including certain words in its documents, the administration is denying the public’s right to even hear words they don’t like.

Jerome Chroman, Seattle


7 other suggestions

Add the “War on Words” to the latest Orwellian governmental move.

And here’s a second list of forbidden words that’s sure to follow: Fact. Integrity. Knowledge. Collusion. Proof. Ethical. And last but not least — Truth.

Ron Dickson, Seattle