a reformer who favors putting an end to slavery
Rebecca Jimerson pays tribute to Harriet Tubman with an impassioned speech of hope, reminding everyone in attendance of the
contribution to American history.The Guardian (Jun 21, 2020)
abolish something is to ban, destroy, or do away with something. It comes from the Latin verb
abolere, meaning "to destroy," which is where we get
obliterate. Prior to the Civil War,
abolitionists were Americans opposed to slavery and dedicated to making it illegal.
a song of devotion or loyalty
While the National Football League finally blesses many players’ desire to kneel during the national
, Trump still curses it.New York Times (Jun 20, 2020)
law determining the fundamental principles of a government
However, a dozen marchers turned up and walked with signs that said “remember your oath” and “defend the
= black lives matter.”Washington Post (Jun 20, 2020)
Constitution is the legal document that created the United States of America, laying out the framework of laws upon which the society would be built. Other important words sharing the Latin root are
constituent, meaning "parts forming a larger body" but in this context referring to voters, and
statute, meaning "law."
the body of enfranchised citizens; those qualified to vote
It should be noted that Monmouth did not interview a representative sample of Democratic voters nationwide, let alone the general
.New York Times (Jun 19, 2020)
grant voting rights
One hundred years ago, the 19th Amendment
millions of women across the United States following a seven-decade campaign.Salon (Jun 9, 2020)
Franchise is a French word meaning "freedom." To
enfranchise someone is to give them freedom, and in modern usage specifically the freedom to vote or permission to run a particular business like a sports team or a fast food restaurant.
The spectacle is overlaid with displays of patriotism and
, games that begin with the unfurling of giant American flags and fly overs by military jets.New York Times (Dec 12, 2019)
jingoism is patriotism taken too far: the desire for one's country to be supreme at any cost, often involving military force.
a muzzle-loading shoulder gun with a long barrel
It’s startling to realize that Colt was born in 1814, just before British troops carrying flintlock
burned the White House.New York Times (May 26, 2020)
the doctrine that your country's interests are superior
Under the Trump administration, fantasies of authoritarian control coupled with a ruthless appropriation of power are fed by an iniquitous political system that weaponizes the tools of white
, racism, and class divisions.Salon (Jun 20, 2020)
Nationalism might not sound bad, since we're talking about patriotic words and loving one's country. But historically,
nationalism often overlaps with fascism: with strongman leaders, racial or ethnic intolerance, and militarism.
inspired by love for your country
Patrios is Greek for "of one's fathers." This led to the Latin
patriota, meaning "fellow-countryman," as in someone who shares the same fatherland.
a form of government whose head of state is not a monarch
When Texas won its independence from Mexico in 1836, slavery was written into the new
constitution.Fox News (Jun 19, 2020)
republic offers a hint at its definition: a country ruled democratically, by the people, without a king or other ruler. A Latin word, it referred to "affairs of state" or "the state" in ancient Rome in the
republican period, during which Rome was a democracy. The Roman
republic ended in 27 B.C.E., when the Senate granted Gaius Octavius sweeping powers, making him the first emperor.
the overthrow of a government by those who are governed
a legal right to vote
Cheryl Hill said that she was inspired by a Smithsonian exhibit she saw on the 100th anniversary of women’s
, and wanted the feeling of voting at a polling place.Washington Post (Jun 16, 2020)
Suffragium means "voting" or "the right to vote" in Latin, and after a journey through French it arrived in English. The
suffragettes were American women who campaigned, advocated, and demonstrated for women's enfranchisement beginning in the mid-nineteenth century. Their fight concluded on August 26, 1920, with the passage of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution.