Sheeple

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Early Dynastic period 2370 - 2900 BC


Sheeple is a term of disparagement, a portmanteau created by combining the words "sheep" and "people"; a reference to herd mentality. It is often used to denote persons who acquiesce to authority, and thus undermine their own human individuality.
The implication of sheeple is that as a collective, people believe whatever they are told, especially if told so by authority figures, without processing it to be sure that it is an accurate representation of the real world around them. The term is generally used in a political and religious sense.

 

Acceptance of government intrusion and regulation is another hallmark of the "sheeple" according to those who use the epithet. The Guardian reported that an Alaskan reacted to news of a survey that said that "four out of five Americans . . . would give up some freedoms for greater security" by labeling this majority as "sheeple".[3] In a column entitled A Nation of Sheeple, columnist Walter E. Williams writes that "Americans sheepishly accepted all sorts of Transportation Security Administration nonsense. In the nam Some on anti-authoritarian left use it to mean people who accept any kind of authority figures or appointed leaders.

The term also has been applied to zealously religious people and perhaps its particular application to Christianity is a combination of the fact that Christians are the majority religion in the Americas and Europe where the term is commonly used, and the fact that Christianity often uses pastoral imagery to describe themselves, such as "shepherd", pasture and "flock".

 

[edit] References

  1. ^ "Word of the Week: Sheeple" at Macmillan Dictionary.
  2. ^ Duncan Campbell, "Goodbye to where America was", June 18, 2002.
  3. ^ "A Nation of Sheeple", Capitalism Magazine, October 19, 2005.

 

 

 

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