Words are not defined by dictionaries or professors, or officials, but by how people use them, how they are put into context, through the timeless evolution of meanings. Words can have many different faces, many of which can be powerful or quite weak, others can have a friendly face or a mean one. Sometimes there are words that can start out having a friendly face, but with time society can turn them into a mean face that betrays its former self, words like this exist all across modern social interaction, some can be more prominent than others and promote an ignorant atmosphere as to which we are forced to live in. The word gay is no exception, many people apply this word incorrectly to every situation and it builds a homophobic atmosphere and creates a barrier for open homosexuality to become an acceptable concept. Unfortunately, I was one of those individuals that contributed to the ignorant use of this word. I have learned that it is an inappropriate way to apply this word, and our generation should not be viewed as one that demotes open homosexuality through speech, but rather one that accepts it and looks toward a brighter social future.
The evolution of the word gay has been quite an interesting journey from its original meaning from hundreds of years ago to today 's meaning. The original definition of the word was an adjective used to describe something bright, colorful or even showy (Oxford English Dictionary); differing from what people think about today as a synonym for homosexual. Gay wasn 't used to replace homosexual as a noun until the twentieth century (Oxford English Dictionary). That was when politics and news corporations used the word to label the homosexual community as gay. In recent events, for example, ...
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...ople have stopped saying the wrong meaning of the word, they can help the cause by not being a bystander. “If you hear someone use the term incorrectly, you should correct them instead of just letting it slip past you, its the only way people can spread awareness of what comes out of your mouth” (Silverstein T.). Its just that easy to solve, all it takes is a little motivation. In a more equal world, the word gay doesn 't mean stupid, dumb or out of favor; it isn 't even a meaning anymore, it is just a representation. A representation of a group of people, homosexuals that can live in peace without the shadow of judgement our homophobia hanging over their head, just as it should be. Then hopefully gay will become a positive word instead of a negative one, just as it has become for me and many others that realize that this word is and never should have been a bad one.
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