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BMJ 2014; 349 doi: (Published 20 August 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g4981

Conservatives and Liberals

The eternal conflict between conservatives (fundamentalists) and liberals (humanists) is, in part, linguistic. The former use literal (denotative) language, while the latter use figurative (connotative) language. Perhaps this conflict is a fallacy of false choices, since both linguistic forms are equally valid, and thus mutually compatible. So let's syncretically reconcile our political and religious differences, by increasing our semantic tolerance of language.

Competing interests: No competing interests

20 August 2014
Hugh Mann
New York, USA