Rob's arguments for the ban were cogent and anguished over; it wasn't something he did lightly with a lah-dee-dah attitude. In his words, he worried over it "for at least a year."
As the owner, publish, editor of Op-ed News and man of many hats, all he was asking was that instead of writers using what he considers "hate-evoking words," they use their imaginations and expand on their ideas, by writing entire sentences, rather than take the lazy way out and throwing them into a catchword.
The entire discussion reminded me of one of the first writing assignments we had in my Journalism-101 class. We had to write a news story without using one adjective.
One, to get us used to the idea that we were writing news stories, and two, adjectives are opinion. Opinion mixed in narrative news is a huge no-no.
Well, it was then. Now the lines between the two have become muddied and blurred, and I long for that kind of ethical reporting.
Keeping opinion out of writing doesn't apply here, that's what we do; we're up front about it, but that doesn't mean we're excused from thinking outside the box of catchphrases and catchwords.
Would there have been so much discussion if Rob -- instead of saying "banned" words -- had said "editorial discretion" or "editorial judgement?"
Be honest. Everyone who writes here or elsewhere, self-edits. I do it all the time. I never write the word "f*ck" out loud to glare in the reader's face.
I say "effing;" "freakin';" "fooking," a la a cockney accent; "fricking;" and rarely the "F" word. And, I would never even think of using the also banned "N" word.
Hell, I even hesitate to use the adjective "niggardly" -- an absolutely legitimate word dating back to Middle English -- for fear that it and/or I will be misunderstood.
All of that is self-editing.
Rob's point is that "Zionism," "Zionist," "Islamicism," and "Islamicist" are "too often used too loosely as a veiled way to express racist, hate messages."
(If you have a racist, hate-filled message, there are plenty of right wing sites out there for you, including Bill O'Reilly's.)