Challenge the language of hatred
What role does name-calling
play in the path to genocide?
Name calling in the
Case Study: "You're so gay"
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Words are powerful. With them we can heal or harm. Holocaust Memorial Day 2012 asks you to Speak Up, Speak Out and to carefully consider the way you use language in person, on line or when speaking about other people.
It may seem like an exaggeration to say that name-calling leads to genocide. But it's not so far-fetched. Dehumanising others, and that's what happens when a derogatory term is used against someone, is a key stage of the path to genocide - a path that none of us wish to take. So if we stamp out name-calling in the playground, in neighbourhoods and online, we can ensure this is a journey that we never start.
Many people consider tackling the issues of equality and fairness to be the province of anti-discrimination law, of advocacy groups, or of government, to be addressed by discrete, often marginal programmes of activity directed at particular groups. But the greatest impacts on the opportunities open to individuals are made by everyday decisions in every part of society, most of which apply equally to everyone.
Equality and Human Rights Commission, 2010