Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Is it the Democrat Or Democratic Party

When the Democrat party is referred to in the media or by other commentators, it's often referred to as the Democratic party. In a bi-partisan manner, both parties are democratic but one by name is the Democrat party. Is one manner of saying it correct and one manner incorrect?

Even if one is not a stickler for words, this presents an interesting question. Going to dictionary.com, and looking up the definition for democrat, it's:

* Democrat: a member of the Democratic party.

By the same token, the definition for democratic is:

* Democratic: a. of, pertaining to, or characteristic of the Democratic party.

This is a not so subtle difference. A democrat is a member of the Democrat party, and democratic is exhibiting the characteristics of the Democratic party. More than that, democratic is "pertaining to or of the nature of democracy or a democracy."

What is the unintentional point that is being made when the reference is made this manner? It seems that on some level the Democrat Party is being raised to a level of "democratic" superiority, while the Republican Party is somehow less so.

To be clear, I am sure that in the majority of cases the choice of words or phrases are done in a entirely innocent manner, in that the term democratic rolls off of the tongue a lot more smoothly than democrat. Additionally, when one hears respected or long time political analysts using the term, it have to correct. Right?

The point, although it might be trivial, is that terms and labels ought to be used correctly.

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