As the next step towards the inevitable living out the script of the movie Idiocracy, the Mayor of Duluth, Minnesota, has banned the use of the word ‘Chief’ in job titles. Mayor, Emily Larson, has been wasting Council time and resources discussing this non-issue.
Although it doesn’t require a change to the city charter, Larson said Wayne Parson, the city’s chief financial officer, also will receive a new title: finance director.
Larson said she’s still not sure about exactly how or whether to change the titles of the city’s police and fire chiefs.
“When you get to public safety, that language is very built into the framework of associations and peer-to-peer efforts and connections,” she explained.
But Larson said Duluth Police Chief Mike Tusken and Fire Chief Shawn Krizaj are not opposed to the idea of title changes.
“So just finding the right language, our chiefs are interested in that and ready for that, but it is not something that we have really settled on at this point,” she said.
When asked to explain the misgivings people have regarding the use of the term “chief,” Larson responded: “It is language that is offensive to people who are indigenous and actually offensive to a lot of people, especially when there is other language available.”
Alicia Kozlowski, a community relations officer for the city who is also a member of the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, said, “Oftentimes the word ‘chief’ is used as, I would say, a racial epithet, and it turns into a microaggression.”
Even though outside criticism has not been directed at the city for its use of the term “chief” in job titles, Kozlowski defended the idea of making a proactive change.
Obviously, with a minimal amount of thinking applied before starting this ridiculous discussion they would have realised that the word ‘chief’ did not come from the Native Americans but was brought to the new world from the old.
Chief is an Old French word meaning principal, first, leader, or most important.
It is also related to chef, so that should also probably be deleted from the lexicon.
Please update your vocabulary (again, sigh) to Vocab 2020 2.0 rev 27.
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