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Discussion on: Replacing master in git

mosfetish profile image

Words do change meaning over time, and that's a very important point, but they also have different contexts, and the contexts in which master is and has been used over time are far greater in number than the master/slave context.

We have masters in many fields. sports and occupations. We use the word master in many situations, both social and technical, that have nothing to do with or have never had anything to do with the very narrow context of one person (master) owning another (the slave).

Add them up. How many uses of master are in use in language that have no relation whatsoever to the ownership of one person by another? I'm guessing it's 1000 to 1. Further, master is not derived from the master/slave context. Master exists independent of it.

And our minds should be able to operate independent of it, too. I find it wholly offensive that people are treated with such disdain that they must have their eyes protected from a combination of six letters that in the vast majority of contexts has nothing to do with master/slave.

One other point. This movement to simply remove words from the language is using the same strategy that government censors use to suppress free discussion. It's easier to simply eradicate words (or combinations of words) than it is to argue against the ideas they represent. The easy route is simply to ban. The more productive, and more moral route, is to challenge and discuss.

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