It appears as through the Obama administration is really ramping up the use of the phrase “federal family.” Everybody’s favorite federal agency, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), has decided that we’re now all part of one big fucked up federal family:
“Under the direction of President Obama and Secretary Janet Napolitano, the entire federal family is leaning forward to support our state, tribal and territorial partners along the East Coast,” a FEMA news release declared Friday as Irene churned toward landfall.
The G-word — “government” — has been nearly banished, with FEMA instead referring to federal, state and local “partners” as well as “offices” and “personnel.”
“’Government’ is such a dirty word right now,” says Florida State University communication professor Davis Houck. “Part of what the federal government does and any elected official does is change the terms of the language game into terms that are favorable to them.”
“Family” can evoke favorable thoughts of motherhood and security.
Although I’m glad that government is starting to get such a bad image attached to it I don’t think renaming it “family” is going to help improve that image. The government’s image is poor because what they’ve done has been nothing but an endless series of bad decisions.
Honestly if my family was forcefully stealing from other people, killing neighbors outside of self-defense, making life difficult for productive members of the family to alleviate the pain of unproductive members, and constantly trying to control family members by enacting new rules regulating every form of behavior and thought I’d want a divorce. Of course the last time members of the federal family tried to file for divorce they were subjected to constant physical beatings until they finally submitted and withdrew their filings.