The death of George Floyd sparked a wave of riots and looting that has plagued cities across the country. Buildings have been burned. People have been assaulted and killed. Stores have been looted. But, according to latest addition to the Associated Press Stylebook Newspeak Dictionary, you shouldn’t be using the word “riot” anymore.
“A riot is a wild or violent disturbance of the peace involving a group of people. The term riot suggests uncontrolled chaos and pandemonium,” explained the AP Stylebook’s official Twitter account on Wednesday. “Focusing on rioting and property destruction rather than underlying grievance has been used in the past to stigmatize broad swaths of people protesting against lynching, police brutality or for racial justice, going back to the urban uprisings of the 1960s.”
Because of this alleged problem, the AP is now saying that the word “unrest” should be used instead of “riot” because—and I’m not joking here—it is less “emotional.”