This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.

Tuesday, 3 December 2019

Thing To Be Today: excoriating.

There's a lot of abuse being flung about nowadays.

Although a lot of insulting language is perpetrated by those least-anonymous of characters, the celebrities or influencers (the difference between them is the route taken by the money), a vast amount of abuse is anonymous and on-line.

Perhaps one root of the problem might be the idea, also an internet-promulgated one, that everyone's opinion is of equal value. 

Or even of any value at all.

Sadly very little of this stuff is excoriating. The original meaning of excoriating is to do with stripping the skin off an animal, and you have to do that with a sharp, carefully applied knife. 

Bellowing POSH! or POPULIST! or RACIST! may cause genuine damage, but it proves nothing except a contempt for intelligent enquiry.

An argument isn't a quarrel.

So, be logical, measured, and, if you must, excoriating.

It's the very best way to get under an opponent's  skin.

Thing To Do Today: be excoriating. This word comes from the Latin excoriāre, to strip or flay, from corium, hide.

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