What's in a word anyway? Hat. Apple. Color. Jew. Palestine. Homosexual.
We define the world using words. When we think about concepts whether it is Torah or secular ideas we most often must do so in terms of words. The choice of words we use colors our understanding of a given situation. Propaganda consists not only of defining what a word means or choosing the right words to frame its message but at its most successful redefines and recontextualizes the subject under discussion so that it is impossible to think of it except in their terms.
Two examples. Palestinian. Homosexual.
What the two have in common is that they redefine a subject with the use of a single word that carries with it an entire worldview with devastating effect on Jews who have done an utterly poor job of defending against it.
Palestinian creates a false national identity and is the linchpin of the transition from the true narrative in which the surrounding Arab states for reasons of ethnic and religion hatred refused to allow Jews to live there in peace to the propaganda narrative of the dispossession of an entire Palestinian people from their homeland by the Jewish colonists. Once this was accomplished and came into use as a propaganda tool, the struggle shifted hopelessly from a story of Jews defending their country to Jews stealing a country until the Jews came to believe it themselves.
Homosexual creates a false identity by making a particular perversion itself an identity thus recreating a person who performs homosexual acts or is tempted to commit them into a homosexual. One is an aspect of a man's character. The second defines a man by that weakness in him. Once a tendency becomes an identity it becomes inescapable. We can tell a man who has a desire for other men to control his tendencies. But once he has defined himself as a homosexual, he can respond; I was born this way, I can't change.
Chazal tell us of the power of a word. Life and death hang on the tongue. The world was created with a word. The world too can be uncreated with them. Mightier than atomic bombs the right words in the right place turn day to night and darkness to light. They redefine the reality of those who use and accept them. The danger of allowing someone else with an agenda to define reality for you is that you will find it increasingly difficult to reject that reality. Once you use 'Palestine' or 'Homosexual,' you find the words increasingly hard to divorce from the propaganda narrative that accompanies them. When we accept the definitions of our enemies then we often find we have lost the argument before it has even begun.