Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Can We Permanently Ban "Boots On The Ground"?

I think it's been a while since I've gone off on a language rant here, but is everyone else (other than the usual suspects within The Beltway and The Media) as sick to death of this never-ending use of "boots on the ground" as I am?  The attached clipping in which John Kerry, Bob Menendez, and Bob Corker all employ the overused military jargon is from Maureen Dowd's column in The New York Times yesterday, but it could just as easily have come from any other story about Syria, or the mouth of any "expert" I've heard on NPR or the PBS NewsHour in the past decade discussing our current or future quagmires.

The lazy use of this metaphor for ground forces -- for actual young humans placed in harm's way by politicians -- seems to flow most freely out of the mouths of old men in dark suits trying to look manly in front of old men in brass-encrusted uniforms, but can we please stop it? 

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