Seattle Workers Told Not To Use Offensive Terms Like “Citizen” Or “Brown Bag”

brown-bag-lunch2Seattle_sealWe have previously followed government officials who are ordering the removal of basic words that they deem offensive. Thus, we saw how “hold down the fort” have been declared unacceptable by Obama Administration officials as racist. In Seattle, the language police have added terms like “citizen” and “brown bag” as racist or offensive. They are to be banned from public documents and discussions by order of the Seattle officials in the city’s Office of Civil Rights. By the way, they might want to start with the city council, which routinely holds “brown bag” lunches.


We have seen media organizations ban the use of “illegal aliens” or “illegal immigrant” to describe people here illegally. Indeed, you cannot use “illegal” but rather “undocumented” in publications or statements in major media outlets. However, now even the term “citizen” is unacceptable as offensive even though it describes a legal status. It is also found in the United States Constitution. It is not clear whether the Office of Civil Rights will now substitute words in such passages as:

Article 1: “No Person shall be a Representative who shall not have attained to the Age of twenty five Years, and been seven Years a Citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State in which he shall be chosen. . . . No Person shall be a Senator who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty Years, and been nine Years a Citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State for which he shall be chosen.”

Article 2, Section 1:“No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.”

Fourteenth Amendment: Section 1. “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States . . . “

I am not sure what we will do with showings of movies like “Citizen Kane” at the public library. “Documented Worker Kane” or “Resident Kane” just doesn’t seem to capture the spirit.

Then there is “brown bag.” This term originated with . . . wait for it . . . the use of bags that are brown. That’s right, paper bags have been brown. People have taken their lunches in brown paper bags for decades. However, the office of Civil Rights found someone offended by that term because “the phrase brown bag does bring up associations with the past when a brown bag was actually used, I understand, to determine if people’s skin color was light enough to allow admission to an event or to come into a party that was being held in a private home.”

I find this perfectly insane but Elliott Bronstein of the Office for Civil Rights assures everyone that “Luckily, we’ve got options” and can use other words instead. For example, the office is telling workers that instead of using “brown bag” city employees should use the terms “lunch-and-learn” or “sack lunch.” Lunch-and-Learn? I am not even sure what that is.

300px-Sack_of_Rome_by_the_Visigoths_on_24_August_410_by_JN_Sylvestre_1890As for sack, it is not an option for me. I find it offensive. I am half Italian and I am still smarting over the sacking of Rome not once but repeatedly in 3990 BC (Gauls), 410 (Visigoths), 455 (Geiseric), 546 (Ostrogoths), 846 (Saracens), 1084 (Normans) and 1527 (Holy Roman mutineers). When ever I hear “sack” I am instinctively thrown into a panic and try to flee to a catacomb. I cannot pass a “sack a suds” without instinctively looking for Visogoths. Indeed, due to the prior sackings, I find the use of “gall” and “normal” offensive as too close to those people in 3990 BC and 1084.

What I do not understand is how in a period of economic difficulty with people without jobs and basic services, we still have people spending their time trying to outlaw “brown bag” and “citizen” from common usage. That is what I find offensive.

Source: KOMO

61 thoughts on “Seattle Workers Told Not To Use Offensive Terms Like “Citizen” Or “Brown Bag””

  1. The local culture in my neck of the woods regarding brown bagging means BYOB.

  2. @pete:

    OH, that video was sooo blase and banal that now I just hate Seattle. LoL. Sooo, I did an Irish Poem about them:

    See: Addle???

    There once was a place called Seattle,
    Whose cage, the P.C. crowd did rattle!
    They said that “Brown Bag”,
    Was a code word for “fag,”
    And “citizens” made folks think “cattle.”

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

  3. from the link

    As part of a settlement reached with a Pennsylvania family that claimed to have suffered health and environmental impacts due to natural gas development operations near their farm, four gas companies insisted on a gag order that prohibits the 7- and 10-year-old children not only from talking about their specific settlement, but from mentioning fracking at all. Ever.

  4. @nicks:

    Yes, I know. A few days ago I posted one proposal from San Antonio trying to punish people for “word or deed”. My point above was, that sans any real or immediate issues, the need for “movements” to perpetuate their own existence will send them off into all manner of ridiculous goose chases. This is true for left,right, libertarian, progressive, or whatever movements.

    In Texas, for example, the Pro-Abortion people are sooo hot for a fund-raising and/or propagating issue, that they are going apedoody over the prohibition on post-20 week abortions. My goodness, what may be a fishy looking reptile fetus at 1 month, is a friggin real live baby at 28 weeks. I am against abortion period, unless for health, but I can at least see the argument when the fetus is relatively un-humany looking. But 28 weeks??? Or later??? That’s just friggin baby murdering.

    But, the abortion movement needs an issue. Plus, like all other extremists, they push the “slippery slope” argument way past any common sense point. Sooo, you get those horrible pictures, of people carrying on for the right to murder babies. There was one hysterical screaming fat broad the cops carried out, who probably will cause a couple of cop worker’s comp claims.

    Seattle, above, is just another example of a group trying to justify their own existence. What some people will do to keep from having to get a real job!

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

  5. Squeeky, This is NO JOKE for these folks. They are the sensitivity police and they are armed w/ the power of the govt. they have usurped. They are deadly serious.

  6. It’s a violation of the 1st Amendment of the Constitution. A Constitutional lawyer needs to be involved here. So the council now becomes a dictator?
    A joke is a joke, but I think this has gone beyond that.

  7. From above:, “. . .use a broader term, like resident, when its being used in a way that could apply to people who are not citizens (like legal immigrants, tourists, temporary workers, resident students with visas, etc.) That seems totally reasonable.”

    Huh??? In a larger sense this is more of what I call “The Movement is the Message”. (Hat Tip to M McCluhan!) Because sooo much of what goes on anymore seems to be “movement driven” to me. Like with Trayvon Martin. You had a “civil rights” movement which glommed on to a non-story for its own purposes, to help propagate itself. Then, when the Zimmerman was a racist line wore thin, it mutated into an “anti SYG” message. Just whatever it takes to keep the movement alive.

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

  8. I’m not a lawyer or a Constitutional scholar but I HAVE read the Constitution. Perhaps one of you more erudite scholars could point me to the place in the Constitution where we are guaranteed freedom from being OFFENDED?

  9. raff, I believe we must all remind ourselves @ times w/ what the road to hell is paved.

  10. Reads like the cretins operating the levers of power within the Seattle Office of Civil Rights have a lot of extra time on their hands in trying to bend the citizen’s serf’s of Seattle to their politically correct word-game whims.

    What a wonderful expenditure of Seattle’s finite tax dollars.

    Perhaps it is time to disband the Seattle Office of Civil Rights.

  11. Fill the brown small sandwich bag with poop. Set upright just outside the front door beyond the sweep of the storm door as it opens. Pour lighter fluid on the bag, Lite it, ring the doorbell, and go observe with a camera as the owner comes out and stomps the fire out. Note the poop on him and his stoop. Brown Baggers R Us.

  12. Dear Sir: I am deeply offended by your cavalier use of the outdated temporal measurement “BC”. The term “before Christ” needs to be purged from your discourse and each history volume in the universe and replaced by the more appropriate and less offensive “BCE”, an abbreviated form of “before the common era”. This will become more critical on the “discovery” of “alien” life forms, for whom, presumably, any reference to “time” on our planet or “religion” would be highly insnesitive to their culture(s).

  13. This shows that sometimes the slippery slope is real (rather than flawed logic). I am reminded of the witticism that goes: first they came for x and by the time they came for me know one was left.

  14. This is typical of the Seattle government; making politcs and strange political statements while spinning their wheels and chasing their tails at the same time. It’s surprising anything gets done there. The city hasn’t had a good mayor in over a generation.

  15. I realize it’s not the same city being gently mocked, but the show “Portlandia” sheds some light on the peoples’ republic mentality at play in the great northwest. 5 out of 5 stars; funny show.

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