Language is an incredibly powerful tool – Captain Rogers’ WWII-era sensibilities notwithstanding…
Seriously – if you’ve ever spoken with me (or read pretty much anything I’ve ever written) – you know damned well that the only time I watch my mouth is if someone puts a mirror in front of me while I’m talking.
Still… words are powerful things.
Storytellers agonize over words. We change the words we’ve written almost every time we read them and continue to do so in our heads even when the piece is a “finished product” because sometimes there’s a better word. Sometimes the tone of a whole statement changes… a whole scene… based on the words used to tell the tale.
But let’s steer out of the crazy storyteller brain for a minute… because, even in the “real world,” words are powerful tools that, unfortunately, a lot of folks use pretty carelessly.
Take, for example, the inspiration for this particular post:
Job postings at The Day Job™
As you know, The Day Job™ resides in the world of Academia.
I work in education, yes, but I don’t teach in the classroom. In fact, as far as my job description is concerned, I don’t teach at all.
(This is the part where I give my boss a dirty look because he keeps trying to convince me I should be in the classroom – and I don’t think he reads this, so I can get away with glaring 😠 🤣)
Here’s the thing… for over twenty years, now, I’ve worked in the same place. I’ve done a couple of different jobs in that time but there’s one thing that’s never changed…
I’m helping students. I’m helping people change their lives.
Does twenty years doing basically the same thing say “career” to anyone else?
Well… academia apparently runs by its own rules.
Faculty (teaching) positions are advertised as “Career Opportunities” but Classified (non-teaching) positions are “Employment Opportunities.”
Going back to that power of language thing…
Job postings at The Day Job™ – where we’re all supposed to have the same mission (helping students succeed) – are written to fall back on the bullshit rhetoric about how jobs are somehow less than careers… how you have to push to advance and win the rat-race or else you’ll be “stuck in a job.”
Making the non-teachers somehow less before they even start the hiring process… I mean… what the actual fuck?
Twenty-one years (and counting) helping change lives and it’s not a career?
My career is old enough to buy its own drinks, thankyouverymuch.
Maybe it’s unintentional… a case of “oh, we didn’t realize…”
Yeah. I’m sure that’s it. I mean… it’s not like the whole state-wide system umbrella The Day Job™ sits under is actively training everyone in microaggressions and biases or anything. 🙄
Bottom line, friends: words are weapons.
If you don’t know how to use them properly, someone’s going to get hurt.
If you do know how to use them but are careless with them, someone’s going to get hurt.
It doesn’t matter if the pen or the sword is mightier… both can change lives, save lives, and destroy lives.
Until next time, friends…
By all means – say what you mean… but think about the meaning of what you’re saying, too.