Wednesday, August 22, 2012

What does labeling get us?

I've noticed that people like labels. If there is a label for it, somebody will shout it out. As if saying the label explains everything you could possibly need to know about the thing being named. But is that true?
What if the use of the label only serves to limit the scope of possibility of the thing? How many times do people shout out labels in a positive manner? With that jubilant tone of recognition and familiarity, instead of the sharp report of fear and accusation? How many times when a label resounds in the conversation does it bring harmony and agreement?
My opinion on the matter is this; Labels are lazy. Words are normally used to communicate, but labels are used to decrease and cut off communication. Labels announce judgement and finality, as if uttering the word was magically covering everything about the subject into a neat little line, that is now fit to be discarded. Labels are used to decrease the value of the subject. By limiting the description, a label effectively limits the furtherance of idea. Kills it right there, before the idea could convince anybody, that it wasn't as scary as it's label. 

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