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MICHAEL MACHERA: Wikipedia Joins The Woke War On Words


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Michael Machera Contributor
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The war on language is real, and it’s being fought on multiple fronts, one of which is on the pages of Wikipedia. Wikipedia is one of the most important sources of information for anyone from school kids to baby boomers, and the left is cognizant of this fact. To put it simply, the left owns Wikipedia.

As of a couple weeks ago, “surrogacy” was defined by Wikipedia as follows:

“Surrogacy is an arrangement […] whereby an assigned female at birth agrees to delivery/labour on behalf of another couple or person, who will become the child’s parent after birth.” (RELATED: ROY MAYNARD: Amateur Historians Turn The Tide Against Woke Academics)

You didn’t read that wrong. Wikipedia used “assigned female at birth” instead of “woman” to describe this delicate medical procedure.

Needless to say, the woke language greatly interferes with one’s ability to understand what is even being communicated. First, one has to decipher the noun-phrase, “person assigned female at birth.” An earnest, non-political person may be trying to disentangle that for a moment before realizing what is referred to here is a *woman*.

When one hears “assigned female at birth,” it evokes a medical procedure in itself. After all, “assigned” denotes an action, not merely being born. Who is “assigning” the gender? The doctor? God? Especially in the context of an explanation of surrogacy, this is confusing.

Now Wikipedia has swapped the phrase “assigned female at birth” for simply “woman” in its entry for “surrogacy,” without noting a change was made. Fortunately, I have receipts (i.e. screenshots) of their earlier entry (a sidebar summary), as the internet archive strangely has no record of the earlier version. There must be some internal debate: Wikipedia’s editing process is notoriously opaque. They are switching back and forth between “assigned female at birth” and “woman,” undecided on just how woke they would like to be.

In Wikipedia’s entry for “cisgender,” they repeat the woke terminology, “assigned at birth”:

“A cisgender […] person has a gender identity that matches their sex assigned at birth. A person whose sex was assigned male at birth and identifies as a boy or a man, or someone whose sex was assigned female at birth and identifies as a girl or a woman, is considered cisgender.”

It’s to the point that woke word-choice obfuscates what people are actually trying to communicate. One suspects that even trans people would not insist on the “assigned at birth” terminology. Instead, this is the work of an activist class bent on bothering as many people as possible.

Wikipedia is perceived as just like an encyclopedia. Its encyclopedic breadth of knowledge makes Wikipedia seem not particularly controversial. Indeed, on noncontroversial topics, it can be a reliable source. It is, however, used as a political weapon at every opportunity. (RELATED: MICHAEL MACHERA: Trump’s ‘DeSanctimonious’ Jab Is Actually Perfect)

Wikipedia also has an insidious manner of labeling news outlets according to a disingenuous political spectrum. Wikipedia refers to the Daily Caller as “right-wing” news and opinion. Other websites with a right of center readership fare even worse. The Federalist is hit with the “misinformation” label — quite unjustly. Politico, meanwhile, is characterized as “leaning left of center” and “moderate” by Wikipedia. So you see, Politico leans ever-so-gently to the left, whereas the Daily Caller is RIGHT-WING.

The apportioning of political space always seems to be done by a leftist arbiter; in this case Wikipedia. Because the left controls Wikipedia, they leverage it to make biased evaluations of news websites’ credibility, labeling them with pejoratives and other calumny.

We see that Wikipedia was apparently on the precipice of replacing the word “woman” with “assigned female at birth,” even in their medical entries. They pulled back — but why? Perhaps they anticipated the pushback. If that’s the case, we should continue to push back against Wikipedia for their bizarre woke terminology and their unjust labeling of their political enemies.

Michael Machera writes book reviews and opinion at Follow him at @mistersir__

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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