These are heady days in Oxford. It is with great infrequency that any word, however obscure, finds its meaning within the unabridged dictionary changed. It is rarer still when one of the OED’s long-standing stars meets with such a radical transformation; but the Oxford English Board of Definition and Meaning has determined that, due to popular colloquial usage, the word “truth” is to be redefined for the upcoming edition of the Oxford English Dictionary.
Grammarians and bibliophiles alike are excited for the abstract noun’s anticipated makeover, and talks of future Festus Veritas have begun to echo throughout the cobbled streets of the medieval city.
The Board of Definition and Meaning, a group consisting of several university academics, has stated with regard to the redefinition, “Due to the drastic and fundamental new understanding of the word ‘truth,’ as it is now used in our everyday spoken language, by television and radio newscasters, government leaders, and through written legislation, what previously was understood to mean something close to ‘objective fact’ will be changed to mean ‘that which the majority population believes.’”
This, of course, has enormous implications with regard to how we shall come to understand the world in which we live. It would appear, with the revelation of the more appropriate definition, that now: Fox News is fair and balanced, President Obama is a socialist Muslim from outer space, and that unionized labor is a legitimate threat to American productivity; among divers other examples to be examined upon the official redefinition.
There is no word yet on how this will affect truth’s credibility.