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The Negative Influence of Language

The Negative Influence of Language

I have been thinking very carefully these past few days since the monsterous assisintaion of Jo Cox, MP about language and our use of it. The referendum campaign has been a very emotive one on both sides. Where there is emotion there are positive and negative factors.

We are fortunate to live in a country where people can express their views freely in whatever manner seems most appropriate. However, with free speech also comes responsibility. It is surely not acceptable to make racist or any other form of derogatory statement based on hatred and pass it off as fact or belief.

It is not only here in the UK we see language being perverted to suit the ideology of this group or that. It surely is not a healthy way to co-exist. As a psychotherapist, I see clients who prove the phrase “words hurt” every day. Be that through bullying or past trauma or whatever.

For years I have said that we should watch what we say and speak with the insight that what we say has the potential to be me misconstrued. I wonder if there are politicians and members of the public who over the past several days have given pause to the idea that what they have said has been misconstrued and acted upon in the most heinous of ways.

Words have power, please use them responsibly.

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