Death of the Media
There are big changes at the AP! They’ve decided that Homophobia and Ethnic-Cleansing are words to not use:
“Ethnic cleansing is a euphemism for pretty violent activities, a phobia is a psychiatric or medical term for a severe mental disorder. Those terms have been used quite a bit in the past, and we don’t feel that’s quite accurate,” said AP Deputy Standards Editor Dave Minthorn… “Homophobia especially — it’s just off the mark. It’s ascribing a mental disability to someone, and suggests a knowledge that we don’t have. It seems inaccurate. Instead, we would use something more neutral: anti-gay, or some such, if we had reason to believe that was the case.”
Got that? So the noun (phobia) and the suffix (-phobia) are interchangeable in their minds.
Here’s a quick lesson to help them sharpen their skills:
The anti-gay boss fires the gay guy, the homophobe kills him.
We hope that clears up any ambiguity, Mr. AP.
Anyway, the new AP Style Book comes out in 2013.