“Vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based,” and “science-based.”
The nation’s top public health agency was informed at a meeting with senior officials overseeing the CDC budget Thursday that in lieu of “science-based” or “evidence-based,” agency officials are to say the “CDC bases its recommendations on science in consideration with community standards and wishes.”
Some terms were not given alternatives.
According to an analyst speaking on condition of anonymity, Alison Kelly, a senior leader in the CDC’s Office of Financial Services, led the meeting.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) disputes this story.
It claims that reporting particular vocabulary has been banned is a “complete mischaracterization.”
An HHS spokesman said in a statement:
“HHS will continue to use the best scientific evidence available to improve the health of all Americans. HHS also strongly encourages the use of outcome and evidence data in program evaluations and budget decisions.”
But other CDC officials have confirmed a forbidden word list.
What is not a mischaracterization is that since Donald Trump took office, there has been a concerted campaign to reverse any vestige of former President Barack Obama’s legacy, from climate change, education, civil rights, to foreign policy.
One area the present administration has struggled with is how to refer to Americans’ sexual orientation, gender identity, and abortion rights.
Instead of just accepting the way its predecessor left it, the Trump administration is changing federal policies and how it collects information about lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people.
For example, HHS dropped questions about sexual orientation and gender identity in two surveys of the elderly.
It also removed information about LGBT Americans from its website.
The department’s Administration for Children and Families archived a page outlining federal services available to LGBT people and their families, including adoption methods, and information about how sex trafficking victims can receive help.
Two years ago, the state of Florida banned the terms “climate change” and “global warming” in official documents and statements.
An April piece in Politico reported current supervisors at the Energy Department’s international climate office ordering staff to refrain from using the phrases “climate change,” “emissions reduction” or “Paris Agreement” in written memos, briefings, or other written communication.
English author George Orwell is either rolling in his grave or laughing at us from the afterlife.
Image credit: Mother Jones