The POLITICO Guide To Grammar & Genocide: A Practical Holocaust Compendium


Oh my god, truly terrible publicationThe POLITICO has created a H/holocaust style guide. Like an actual collection of words published on that serve to outline when it is okay to invoke lower case-h holocaust and when it is okay to go all WWII insidery and just GO FOR IT and use the capital H. "When is a holocaust not the Holocaust?" is the actual lede of this non-specific genocide of an article.

Alan Grayson used the word "holocaust" the other day to describe a bunch of people dying from a lack of health care. BUT UM, isn't this offensive to dead people who DIED in the famous Holocaust?? Maybe! Please everyone take out your POLITICO Guide to Genocide & Grammar and turn to Chapter 1: Proper Nouns Are Anti-Semitic ("Hitler" Is A Proper Noun):

The text of Grayson’s statement, e-mailed to reporters, showed the word beginning with a lower-case “h,” not as a proper noun referring to the systematic execution of Jews by Nazis.

For some Jewish lawmakers, there’s a big and appropriate distinction. For others, the word is so loaded that the generic term is as offensive as the specific one. There also appears to be a generational split, with older Jews more likely to cringe at the term.

Great thank you. Oh but can we quote some old Jewish guy, to corroborate this, for Authenticity?

Older Jews seem uncomfortable with any rhetorical use, arguing it is hard to make a distinction between a holocaust — total devastation, particularly by fire — and the Holocaust.

“To me, there’s only one Holocaust, and I think excessive use of that word has the effect of trivializing the Holocaust,” said Rep. Eliot Engel, 62, who represents the Bronx neighborhood where Grayson grew up. “I know that wasn’t Congressman Grayson’s intention at all. I wish he would not use that word.”


[POLITICO Guide to Genocide & Grammar]


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