by Thaddeus G. McCotter
In 2001, I served in the Michigan State Senate. One morning our then-governor, John Engler, met with our Republican caucus to promote his idea of consolidating several state entities within a single department by executive order. Characteristic of his transformational tenure, Engler was endeavoring to further streamline the Michigan bureaucracy to provide more efficient and effective services, promote accountability within state government, and save taxpayers’ money.
When the governor finished his convincing pitch for the Department of History, Arts, and Culture, I raised my hand: “Governor, you know the new department’s acronym will be hack (HAC)?”
In the awkward silence, Engler impassively studied me for a moment then left. The intent stares I received from my senate colleagues told me two things: one, they thought I was a jackanapes; and, two, when the governor got done with me, they wanted to make sure they could identify my body.
Later, the governor was pleased to announce the formation of the new Michigan Department of History, Arts, and Libraries. I do not know if the governor was a science fiction fan, but I do know he possessed the impish wit to christen his new creation with the acronym of the murderous HAL 9000 in “2001: A Space Odyssey.” (Ultimately, on July 14, 2009, in a move akin to Dave Bowman disconnecting HAL, then-Governor Jennifer Granholm eliminated the Department of HAL by disconnecting its constituent parts and housing them elsewhere within state government.)
I was reminded of this acronym incident recently when asked why, when discussing the Left’s cult of “diversity, inclusion, and equity,” I prefer to use the acronym DIE, rather than the regressives’ preferred DEI.
There are four main reasons.
The first is chronology. As Alexandria Love asks and answers at the Berrett-Koehler Publishers website: “But wait, where did the Equity come from? And has it always been there? In recent years, Diversity and Inclusion initiatives are bolstered by the addition of the concept of ‘Equity.’” Ergo, chronologically, the Left’s promotion of diversity predates inclusion which predates equity—DIE, QED.
The second reason is the Left knows that chronologically and logically “inclusion” should be the second item in their trinity. This is why the Left has deliberately chosen to reorder the acronym from DIE to DEI—“diversity, equity, and inclusion.” Per Love, who reorders the three aims, but then reverts back to a more chronological—and logical—ordering when explaining their relation to each other:
Thus [sic] we arrive at the current incarnation of this essential tool that features equal (and equitable) attention on diversity, equity, and inclusion. A single piece of the puzzle missing would create an incomplete picture. Diversity is the chorus of different voices in the conversation. Inclusion is uplifting, validating, and hearing each and every voice. Equity is the manner in which we amplify voices.
So, why does the Left feel compelled to tweak its cult’s acronym? It would be political death if the Left had to message its noxious cult with the ominous but apt acronym DIE. Instead, the Left which is pimping a new “civil religion” and burning those deemed heretics at the cancel culture stake, demands their cult be referred to with the acronym DEI, which is Latin for . . . “God.”
This leads to the third reason. For those of you who think this is quibbling, consider yourself enlightened. The Left believes it can change human nature. The weaponization of language, be it in the service of “narratives,” redefinitions, or censorship is one the primary tools they use to achieve their ultimate aim of transmogrifying free sovereign citizens into serfs of the state. This is why genocidal Communist China claims it is a “democracy.” As we know, one cannot have an actual democracy without liberty; and, no matter how much you redefine the language, you can’t erase the inhumane reality of the Beijing regime.
So, we reach the fourth reason: We must never cede language to the Left—especially when they’ve weaponized it against Americans and our free republic.
After all, seeking to confine our free republic within what they call “our democracy™,” the Left must supplant our foundational principles of “liberty and equality” with theirs of “in diversity, inclusion, and equity.” And, because the Left is bent upon making everything political, we are consequently compelled to defend against their every assault on faith, family, community, and country—the permanent things that unite a free people in the bonds of commodious citizenship. The DIE cult reviles these virtuous, voluntary unions and lusts to redefine, demean, deconstruct, and destroy them.
Therefore, from the bottom of our liberty-loving hearts with all sincerity and due charity, let us offer the Left this acronym: FU.
– – –
The Hon. Thaddeus McCotter is the former chairman of the Republican House Policy Committee, current itinerant guitarist, American Greatness contributor, and Monday co-host of the “John Batchelor Show.”