Itâ€™s rather less legitimate to label Mr. Cameron a â€œpestilent toad,â€ because, well. He seems pretty clean. But more to the point, calling him a pestilent toad doesnâ€™t really do much other than call him a name. One may argue that he spreads the pestilence of intolerance and that his antipathy toward gays is positively amphibian, but you have to explain it and it seems the long way around, sort of like suggesting how â€œunnaturalâ€ really refers to philosophical concepts pioneered by Aquinas. It might be better to keep things simple, or if not simple, then immediately relatable to the subject on hand.
Now, ironically, should Mr. Cameron ever attempt to sue me for libel, my defense would be marginally better if I did refer to him as a pestilent toad than an ignorant bigot, because I could claim â€œpestilent toadâ€ as an example of hyperbole, since I donâ€™t really believe heâ€™s an actual pestilent toad, whereas I suspect he may be an actual ignorant bigot. But this goes back to the whole â€œpublic figureâ€ thing.
I’ve written before that I like John Scalzi as an author. Every book of his I’ve read I’ve loved. He’s not just an author, he’s a thinker. And he’s got a rather unique sense of humor.
But it’s stuff like this that makes his blog a gem, too. If you aren’t reading Whatever, you should be.