Vail Daily columnist Richard Carnes: Grossly misused adjective
April 22, 2013
There are certain adjectives that evoke an immediate mental impression.
Words like fantastic, astonishing and intellectual are good examples.
How about the word sophisticated? Its definition – “intellectually appealing or aware of and able to interpret complex issues” – would perhaps conjure thoughts of advanced education, polished, hi-tech or refined.
So why in the wide, wide world of common decency does the media seem to apply it whenever a bomb explodes via a cell phone trigger system, as opposed to some idiot pushing a button on his vest?
There is absolutely nothing whatsoever sophisticated about an uneducated buffoon who cares more about the perverted fantasy thoughts between his ears than the reality of an 8-year-old little boy innocently standing around the finish line of an annual foot race.
If there is another person involved, or perhaps another phone number on the single cell phone dialed in order to explode another bomb, the word sophisticated still never comes to mind.
Nope, not even in the slightest.
Coordinating attacks at an agreed upon time frame takes no more brain capacity than resetting clocks around the house for daylight savings time or the uncanny ability of putting one foot in front of the other to move from point A to point B without falling.
While a fan of uniform (aka common sense) background checks for gun purchases, the incident in Boston drives home the point that all of the gun regulations in the world cannot prevent an idiot using basically the same tools KFC utilizes to keep their 11 herbs and spices tasty from killing hundreds of innocent human beings, if they possess a warped enough determination.
Yet on the other hand, if every single runner, spectator and Bostonian hanging around the race was packing an AK-47, it would not have made a damned bit of difference, either.
Let’s not kid ourselves about the sophistication and presumed intelligence, or lack thereof, of terrorists of all stripes, as even so-called geniuses can do incredibly stupid things (Ted Kaczynski, anyone?). Even when done in a so-called sophisticated manner, they’re still about as dumb as a thief bragging on Facebook, complete with pictures, of his or her latest heist.
As for these bumbling bozos in Boston whose method of killing innocents the media mindlessly calling sophisticated for the first three days, I just wish those embracing superstitious ideologies that justify the use of violence would simply offer compelling arguments to promote their belief system in a positive manner instead.
But, sigh, we all know that will sadly not occur anytime soon, and we will instead be exposed for the next few months to wild conspiracy theories and Tea Party members blaming wimpy liberals, wimpy liberals blaming the gun culture of the GOP, the GOP blaming Obama (of course it’s his fault), certain religious groups blaming other particular religious group – wash, rinse, repeat.
But hey, at least none of the media will refer to any of them as sophisticated.
Richard Carnes, of Edwards , writes weekly. He can be reached at poor