Time for the folks at Merriam Webster to let us know what we are going to put in our scrapbooks as this year's Word. And the winner is:
Wait for it.
No. It's not "wait for it," that's just to build tension.
2018's Word of the Year is Justice. And that seems to make sense to me. Whether we are talking about the pursuit or the lack thereof, it certainly has been on a lot of people's minds. On this little corner of Al Gore's Internet, there have been twenty specific mentions of justice, dating back all the way to 2009. So it would appear that I am ahead of the curve, appreciation-wise. As a matter of numerical fact, this entry will put me at twenty-one, so I feel pretty good about this level of justice acknowledgement.
And it turns out that justice is pretty important. It is fully one third of the things for which Superman tends to show up. There are warriors who use justice as their modifier. We have a Department of Justice that seems to be in a state of flux currently. It's also something that seems to be obstructed from time to time. This is not something that eating more bran can fix, however. Finding ways to get a more freely-flowing stream of justice is in most everyone's interest. In many ways, 2018 was a year in which justice was sorely lacking from our cultural landscape.
It should be noted that the folks at Merriam Webster decide on their annual word in part by the number of inquiries made to their web site about spelling and definition. If you're curious, they define it as "the maintenance or administration of what is just especially by the impartial adjustment of conflicting claims or the assignment of merited rewards or punishments." If you would like to break into small groups at this time and discuss "what is just," remember that you have just twelve months to be back here when we will hopefully have an answer.