What happens if you type “bigotry” into Google? Something that conservatives are pitching a huge bitch about. Yet more faux outrage.
For some reason, Betsy Rothstein at The Daily Caller happened to type “bigotry” into Google. She was not happy with what came back:
Read the sample sentence. Uh-huh. That’s what did it, that’s what is making conservative heads explode tonight. But, as is their wont, they are taking it out on the messenger, blaming Google. But Google is just using a sample from the Oxford Dictionaries. You can see exactly the same sample sentence at the Oxford Dictionaries website.
It’s interesting, though, that typing just “bigotry” doesn’t bring that page up. Go ahead and try it. You have to add “definition” — as I did in the image — to get the same result as The Daily Caller did. It just makes me wonder if someone was fishing for something to be up in arms about.
If one truly wanted to understand the word “bigotry,” they only have to go to the Online Etymology Dictionary. There, they would find the — rather muddled — origins of the word.
“Bigotry” dates back to the 16th century French word for sanctimoniousness, “bigoterie.” That’s the clear part. It starts to get iffy beyond that, as the origin of “bigot” is a bit harder to chase down. One theory is that it comes from a derogatory term for the Normans, from their use of the Germanic oath, bi God. The Oxford Dictionary writes this off as absurd but can’t offer much of an alternative.
Another school of thought is that “bigot” goes back to a name of a Visigoth tribe in Gaul. This is also doubtful, on phonetic grounds. The only plausible theory left is that the word may be based on the Spanish word for mustache, “bigote.” In the end, we just don’t know for sure. But, in the sense in which we now know it, “bigot” came into use to describe a religious hypocrite in the 16th century. It evolved to include any kind of hypocrisy or sanctimoniousness. (I love it when I can use one of my avocations in my work.)
All that information is available with two clicks of a mouse. You don’t have to be a word-lover like me to find the origins of words. But you do have to be intellectually curious, something a great many conservatives find elitist. Because they do, they will go on using words inappropriately and getting angry because words mean certain things. If only dictionaries were held in as high esteem as Bibles in their world.