Ethics Alarms hates euphemisms, which are usually not intended as delicate ways of describing something controversial, but rather an unethical effort to hide its true nature. Affirmative action…pro-life… pro-choice….all cowardly, all designed to deceive and avoid accountability for one’s actions and views.
Today’s quiz involves a brand new euphemism, cooked up by the Obama administration to describe warfare in Libya that the administration doesn’t want to admit is warfare: kinetic military action!
Which euphemism is more unethical?
“Enhanced interrogation” for torture (The Bush Administration)
“Kinetic military action” for warfare (The Obama Administration)
Here is how to reach your decision: rank A and B in each of three categories…misrepresentation, cowardice, and degree of disrespect and contempt for the intelligence of the American public. First place is worth one point; second gets none. If you rate the category a tie, each gets one-half a point.
Good luck. By the way: there is no wrong answer, since both euphemisms are disgraceful. But let’s see if there is any consensus. I’ll reveal my answer later.