If you could permanently ban a word from general usage, which one would it be? Why?
Photographers, artists, poets: show us NO.
I don’t have just one word that I would ban from general use. I have a sentence that I would ban. It is the most over-used sentence in the English language. It means nothing and people use it over and over. It is the sentence, “It is what it is.”
The sentence “It is what it is” is used by people as a filler when they have nothing else to say. They use it to indicate defeat in a situation, to close a situation, to simply state the obvious. The sentence means nothing in particular. It is such a general statement that no one can quibble with it. Of course a situation “is what it is.” It is a truism. It means nothing. It is an empty statement.
People use this statement when they don’t know what else to say in a particular instance. They may have lost an argument or have lost a court case on television. They really have no comeback except to say, “It is what it is.” They feel they need to have the last word and they need to say something so they use this sentence.
This is the sentence I would ban from general use. No one needs to use this sentence any more. It means nothing. Take it out of your lexicon. It’s gone.